Hervé Besson

Medical Research Council (UK), Londinium, England, United Kingdom

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Publications (26)109.28 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Physical inactivity is one of the four leading risk factors for global mortality. Accurate measurement of physical activity (PA) and in particular by physical activity questionnaires (PAQs) remains a challenge. The aim of this paper is to provide an updated systematic review of the reliability and validity characteristics of existing and more recently developed PAQs and to quantitatively compare the performance between existing and newly developed PAQs.A literature search of electronic databases was performed for studies assessing reliability and validity data of PAQs using an objective criterion measurement of PA between January 1997 and December 2011. Articles meeting the inclusion criteria were screened and data were extracted to provide a systematic overview of measurement properties. Due to differences in reported outcomes and criterion methods a quantitative meta-analysis was not possible.In total, 31 studies testing 34 newly developed PAQs, and 65 studies examining 96 existing PAQs were included. Very few PAQs showed good results on both reliability and validity. Median reliability correlation coefficients were 0.62--0.71 for existing, and 0.74--0.76 for new PAQs. Median validity coefficients ranged from 0.30--0.39 for existing, and from 0.25--0.41 for new PAQs.Although the majority of PAQs appear to have acceptable reliability, the validity is moderate at best. Newly developed PAQs do not appear to perform substantially better than existing PAQs in terms of reliability and validity. Future PAQ studies should include measures of absolute validity and the error structure of the instrument.
    International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity 08/2012; 9(1):103. · 3.58 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Evidence on the correlates of objectively measured physical activity and sedentary behaviour in childhood is limited. This study aimed to identify correlates of physical activity and sedentary behaviour among 7-year-old children in England. Physical activity was measured using Actigraph accelerometry in 480 participants as part of the Gateshead Millennium Study during 2006-07. Twenty-two potential correlates across five domains (demographic and biological; psychological, cognitive and emotional; behavioural; social and cultural; physical environmental) were tested for associations with total volume of habitual physical activity, moderate-vigorous intensity physical activity (MVPA) and sedentary behaviour. Multiple linear regression analysis was used. Seven correlates, including four that are potentially modifiable, were significantly associated with total physical activity, MVPA and sedentary behaviour in final models: gender, child weight status, maternal age, child interest in active play, active commuting to school, parenting practice and season. Four of these variables were significantly associated with all three constructs in final models. The final models explained 18, 18 and 24% of variance in total volume of physical activity, MVPA and sedentary behaviour, respectively. A number of potentially modifiable factors are associated with increased physical activity and/or reduced sedentary behaviour in English children. These could be valuable targets of future interventions.
    The European Journal of Public Health 08/2011; 21(4):424-31. · 2.52 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: This study aimed at synthesizing the prospective associations between measured physical activity (PA) and change in adiposity in children, adolescents and adults following from two previous reviews. Search terms were adapted and a systematic literature search was conducted (January 2000-September 2008) and later updated (up to October 2009), considering observational and intervention studies of weight gain that measured both PA and body composition. Sixteen observational studies (six comprising adults) and five trials (one comprising adults) were eligible. For consistency, whenever possible either baseline PA energy expenditure or accelerometer output (counts min(-1) ) and change in per cent body fat were the extracted exposure and outcome measures. Results of observational studies suggest that PA is not strongly prospectively related with adiposity: five studies on children and three on adults reported no association between baseline PA and change in adiposity, one study found a weak positive association and the other studies observed a weak negative association. Negative associations were more frequently observed in studies that analysed the association between change in the exposure and outcome. Intervention studies show generally no effect on either PA or adiposity. In conclusion, despite the well-established health benefits of PA, it may not be a key determinant of excessive gain in adiposity.
    Obesity Reviews 05/2011; 12(5):e119-29. · 6.87 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To examine the association of education with body mass index (BMI) and waist circumference (WC) in the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC). This study included 141,230 male and 336,637 female EPIC-participants, who were recruited between 1992 and 2000. Education, which was assessed by questionnaire, was classified into four categories; BMI and WC, measured by trained personnel in most participating centers, were modeled as continuous dependent variables. Associations were estimated using multilevel mixed effects linear regression models. Compared with the lowest education level, BMI and WC were significantly lower for all three higher education categories, which was consistent for all countries. Women with university degree had a 2.1 kg/m2 lower BMI compared with women with lowest education level. For men, a statistically significant, but less pronounced difference was observed (1.3 kg/m2). The association between WC and education level was also of greater magnitude for women: compared with the lowest education level, average WC of women was lower by 5.2 cm for women in the highest category. For men the difference was 2.9 cm. In this European cohort, there is an inverse association between higher BMI as well as higher WC and lower education level. Public Health Programs that aim to reduce overweight and obesity should primarily focus on the lower educated population.
    BMC Public Health 03/2011; 11:169. · 2.08 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Television viewing (TV), a highly prevalent behaviour, is associated with higher cardiovascular risk independently of physical activity. The relationship with mortality, however, is relatively unknown. We examined the prospective relationship between TV time and all-cause, cardiovascular and cancer mortality in a population-based cohort [The European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC), Norfolk] of 13 197 men and women {age [SD (standard deviation)]: 61.5 ± 9.0 years}. Participants were free from stroke, myocardial infarction and cancer at baseline in 1998-2000 and were followed up for death ascertainment until 2009 (9.5 ± 1.6 years). TV time, total physical activity energy expenditure (PAEE), education level, smoking status, alcohol consumption, anti-hypertensive and lipid-lowering medication use, participant and family history of disease and total energy intake were self-reported; height and weight were measured by standardized procedures. Hazard ratios (HRs) [95% confidence interval (CI)] for mortality were estimated per 1-h/day increase in TV. Each 1-h/day increase in TV time was associated with increased hazard of all-cause (HR = 1.04, 95% CI = 1.01-1.09; 1270 deaths) and cardiovascular (HR = 1.07, 95% CI = 1.01-1.15; 373 deaths), but not cancer mortality (HR = 1.04, 95% CI = 0.98-1.10; 570 deaths). This was independent of gender, age, education, smoking, alcohol, medication, diabetes history, family history of cardiovascular disease and cancer, body mass index (BMI) and PAEE. They were similar when stratified by gender, age, education, BMI and PAEE. The population-attributable fraction for all-cause mortality comparing the highest TV tertile (>3.6 h/day) with the lowest (<2.5 h/day) was 5.4%. These findings suggest that public health recommendations should consider advising a reduction in TV time, a predominant leisure activity in modern society, in addition to advocating physical activity.
    International Journal of Epidemiology 02/2011; 40(1):150-9. · 6.98 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The protective effect of physical activity (PA) on abdominal adiposity is unclear. We examined whether PA independently predicted gains in body weight and abdominal adiposity. In a prospective cohort study [the EPIC (European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition)], we followed 84,511 men and 203,987 women for 5.1 y. PA was assessed by a validated questionnaire, and individuals were categorized into 4 groups (inactive, moderately inactive, moderately active, and active). Body weight and waist circumference were measured at baseline and self-reported at follow-up. We used multilevel mixed-effects linear regression models and stratified our analyses by sex with adjustments for age, smoking status, alcohol consumption, educational level, total energy intake, duration of follow-up, baseline body weight, change in body weight, and waist circumference (when applicable). PA significantly predicted a lower waist circumference (in cm) in men (β = -0.045; 95% CI: -0.057, -0.034) and in women (β = -0.035; 95% CI: -0.056, -0.015) independent of baseline body weight, baseline waist circumference, and other confounding factors. The magnitude of associations was materially unchanged after adjustment for change in body weight. PA was not significantly associated with annual weight gain (in kg) in men (β = -0.008; 95% CI: -0.02, 0.003) and women (β = -0.01; 95% CI: -0.02, 0.0006). The odds of becoming obese were reduced by 7% (P < 0.001) and 10% (P < 0.001) for a one-category difference in baseline PA in men and women, respectively. Our results suggest that a higher level of PA reduces abdominal adiposity independent of baseline and changes in body weight and is thus a useful strategy for preventing chronic diseases and premature deaths.
    American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 02/2011; 93(4):826-35. · 6.50 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Although television viewing time is detrimentally associated with intermediate cardiovascular risk factors, the relationship with incident total (i.e. combined fatal and non-fatal) cardiovascular disease (CVD), non-fatal CVD and coronary heart disease is largely unknown. This study examined whether television viewing time is associated with these three outcomes, independently of physical activity energy expenditure and other confounding variables. A population-based cohort of 12,608 men and women (aged 61.4±9.0), free from stroke, myocardial infarction and cancer at baseline in 1998-2000 were followed up until 2007 (6.9±1.9 years). Participants self-reported education, smoking, alcohol use, antihypertensive, lipid lowering and antidepressant medication, disease history, total energy intake, sleep duration, physical activity and television viewing. BMI, waist circumference, blood pressure, triglycerides, HDL cholesterol and glycated haemoglobin (HbA(1c)) were measured by standardized procedures; a clustered metabolic risk score was constructed. Every one hour/day increase in television viewing was associated with an increased hazard for total (HR = 1.06, 95%CI = 1.03-1.08; 2,620 cases), non-fatal CVD (HR = 1.06, 95%CI = 1.03-1.09; 2,134 cases), and coronary heart disease (HR = 1.08, 95%CI = 1.03-1.13; 940 cases), independent of gender, age, education, smoking, alcohol, medication, diabetes status, CVD family history, sleep duration and physical activity energy expenditure. Energy intake, BMI, waist circumference, blood pressure, triglycerides, HDL cholesterol, HbA(1c) and the clustered metabolic risk score only partially mediated these associations. These results indicate that the most prevalent leisure time (sedentary) behaviour, television viewing, independently contributes to increased CVD risk. Recommendations on reducing television viewing time should be considered.
    PLoS ONE 01/2011; 6(5):e20058. · 3.73 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: A large body of epidemiological evidence suggests an inverse relationship between physical activity and risk of fractures. However, it is unclear how this association varies according to the domain of life in which the activity is undertaken. In this analysis of the European Prospective Investigation of Cancer-Norfolk study, we assessed total and domain-specific physical activity using a validated questionnaire (EPAQ2) in 14,903 participants (6514 men, mean age 62 year) who also underwent quantitative ultrasound of the heel. After a median follow-up of 7.5 years, there were 504 fractures of which 164 were hip fractures. In multivariable linear regression analysis, broadband ultrasound attenuation (BUA) was positively associated with total and leisure-time activities while showing no association with transportation and work activities. Home activities were associated with a lower BUA among younger participants. In multivariable Cox proportional-hazards models, moderate activities at home and in leisure time were associated with lower hip fracture risk among women (hazard ratios [HR] 0.51 and 0.55, p value 0.02 and 0.03, respectively). Among men, leisure-time activities were associated with lower risk of hip fracture (HR=0.58; p for trend<0.001) whereas activities at home were associated with higher risk of any fracture (HR=1.25; p for trend=0.008). Walking for leisure or transport was associated with lower risk of fracture in both men and women. Multivariable fractional polynomial modelling showed a U-shaped association between home activities and fracture risk especially among women. This study suggests that different domains of physical activity may relate differently to fracture risk and these relationships may vary by sex.
    Bone 09/2010; 47(3):693-700. · 3.82 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We sought to determine the effect of an aerobic exercise intervention on clustered metabolic risk and related outcomes in healthy older adults in a single-centre, explanatory randomised controlled trial. Participants from the Hertfordshire Cohort Study (born 1931-1939) were randomly assigned to 36 supervised 1 h sessions on a cycle ergometer over 12 weeks or to a non-intervention control group. Randomisation and group allocation were conducted by the study co-ordinator, using a software programme. Those with prevalent diabetes, unstable ischaemic heart disease or poor mobility were excluded. All data were collected at our clinical research facility in Cambridge. Components of the metabolic syndrome were used to derive a standardised composite metabolic risk score (zMS) as the primary outcome. Trial status: closed to follow-up. We randomised 100 participants (50 to the intervention, 50 to the control group). Mean age was 71.4 (range 67.4-76.3) years. Overall, 96% of participants attended for follow-up measures. There were no serious adverse events. Using an intention-to-treat analysis, we saw a non-significant reduction in zMS in the exercise group compared with controls (0.07 [95% CI -0.03, 0.17], p = 0.19). However, the exercise group had significantly decreased weight, waist circumference and intrahepatic lipid, with increased aerobic fitness and a 68% reduction in prevalence of abnormal glucose metabolism (OR 0.32 [95% CI 0.11-0.92], p = 0.035) compared with controls. Results were similar in per-protocol analyses. Enrolment in a supervised aerobic exercise intervention led to weight loss, increased fitness and improvements in some but not all metabolic outcomes. In appropriately screened older individuals, such interventions appear to be safe. Controlled-trials.com ISRCTN60986572 Medical Research Council.
    Diabetologia 04/2010; 53(4):624-31. · 6.49 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Physical activity has a fundamental role in the prevention and treatment of chronic disease. The precise measurement of physical activity is key to many surveillance and epidemiological studies investigating trends and associations with disease. Public health initiatives aimed at increasing physical activity rely on the measurement of physical activity to monitor their effectiveness. Physical activity is multidimensional, and a complex behaviour to measure; its various domains are often misunderstood. Inappropriate or crude measures of physical activity have serious implications, and are likely to lead to misleading results and underestimate effect size. In this review, key definitions and theoretical aspects, which underpin the measurement of physical activity, are briefly discussed. Methodologies particularly suited for use in epidemiological research are reviewed, with particular reference to their validity, primary outcome measure and considerations when using each in the field. It is acknowledged that the choice of method may be a compromise between accuracy level and feasibility, but the ultimate choice of tool must suit the stated aim of the research. A framework is presented to guide researchers on the selection of the most suitable tool for use in a specific study.
    European journal of cardiovascular prevention and rehabilitation: official journal of the European Society of Cardiology, Working Groups on Epidemiology & Prevention and Cardiac Rehabilitation and Exercise Physiology 03/2010; 17(2):127-39. · 2.51 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Abstract Background Lifetime physical activity energy expenditure (PAEE) is an important determinant of risk for many chronic diseases but remains challenging to measure. Previously reported historical physical activity (PA) questionnaires appear to be reliable, but their validity is less well established. Methods We sought to design and validate an historical adulthood PA questionnaire (HAPAQ) against objective PA measurements from the same individuals. We recruited from a population-based cohort in Cambridgeshire, UK, (Medical Research Council Ely Study) in whom PA measurements, using individually calibrated heart rate monitoring, had been obtained in the past, once between 1994 and 1996 and once between 2000 and 2002. 100 individuals from this cohort attended for interview. Historical PA within the domains of home, work, transport, sport and exercise was recalled using the questionnaire by asking closed questions repeated for several discrete time periods from the age of 20 years old to their current age. The average PAEE from the 2 periods of objective measurements was compared to the self-reported data from the corresponding time periods in the questionnaire. Results Significant correlations were observed between HAPAQ-derived and objectively measured total PAEE for both time periods (Spearman r = 0.44; P < 0.001). Similarly, self-reported time spent in vigorous PA was significantly correlated with objective measurements of vigorous PA (Spearman r = 0.40; P < 0.001). Conclusions HAPAQ demonstrates convergent validity for total PAEE and vigorous PA. This instrument will be useful for ranking individuals according to their past PA in studies of chronic disease aetiology, where activity may be an important underlying factor contributing to disease pathogenesis.
    International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity 01/2010; · 3.58 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Lifetime physical activity energy expenditure (PAEE) is an important determinant of risk for many chronic diseases but remains challenging to measure. Previously reported historical physical activity (PA) questionnaires appear to be reliable, but their validity is less well established. We sought to design and validate an historical adulthood PA questionnaire (HAPAQ) against objective PA measurements from the same individuals. We recruited from a population-based cohort in Cambridgeshire, UK, (Medical Research Council Ely Study) in whom PA measurements, using individually calibrated heart rate monitoring, had been obtained in the past, once between 1994 and 1996 and once between 2000 and 2002. 100 individuals from this cohort attended for interview. Historical PA within the domains of home, work, transport, sport and exercise was recalled using the questionnaire by asking closed questions repeated for several discrete time periods from the age of 20 years old to their current age. The average PAEE from the 2 periods of objective measurements was compared to the self-reported data from the corresponding time periods in the questionnaire. Significant correlations were observed between HAPAQ-derived and objectively measured total PAEE for both time periods (Spearman r = 0.44; P < 0.001). Similarly, self-reported time spent in vigorous PA was significantly correlated with objective measurements of vigorous PA (Spearman r = 0.40; P < 0.001). HAPAQ demonstrates convergent validity for total PAEE and vigorous PA. This instrument will be useful for ranking individuals according to their past PA in studies of chronic disease aetiology, where activity may be an important underlying factor contributing to disease pathogenesis.
    International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity 01/2010; 7:54. · 3.58 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Obese and overweight women may benefit from increased physical activity (PA) during pregnancy. There is limited published data describing objectively measured PA in such women. A longitudinal observational study of PA intensity, type and duration using objective and subjective measurement methods. Fifty five pregnant women with booking body mass index (BMI) ≥ 25 kg/m2 were recruited from a hospital ultrasound clinic in North East England. 26 (47%) were nulliparous and 22 (40%) were obese (BMI ≥ 30 kg/m2). PA was measured by accelerometry and self report questionnaire at 13 weeks, 26 weeks and/or 36 weeks gestation. Outcome measures were daily duration of light, moderate or vigorous activity assessed by accelerometry; calculated overall PA energy expenditure, (PAEE), and PAEE within four domains of activity based on self report. At median 13 weeks gestation, women recorded a median 125 mins/day light activity and 35 mins/day moderate or vigorous activity (MVPA). 65% achieved the minimum recommended 30 mins/day MVPA. This proportion was maintained at 26 weeks (62%) and 36 weeks (71%). Women achieving more than 30 mins/day MVPA in the first trimester showed a significant reduction in duration of MVPA by the third trimester (11 mins/day, p = 0.003). Walking, swimming and floor exercises were the most commonly reported recreational activities but their contribution to estimated energy expenditure was small. Overweight and obese pregnant women can achieve and maintain recommended levels of PA throughout pregnancy. Interventions to promote PA should target changes in habitual activities at work and at home, and in particular walking.
    BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 01/2010; 10:76. · 2.52 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Few questionnaires that assess usual physical activity have been reported to be valid for all different subdimensions of physical activity. The objective was to assess the validity and reliability of the Recent Physical Activity Questionnaire (RPAQ), which assesses usual physical activity (PA) in 4 domains (work, travel, recreation, and domestic life). Total energy expenditure (TEE) was measured for 14 d by using the doubly labeled water technique combined with a measure of resting metabolic rate to yield PA energy expenditure (PAEE) in 25 men and 25 women. Simultaneously, intensity of activity was measured by using combined heart rate and movement sensing for 11 d. Repeatability of the RPAQ was assessed in an independent sample of 71 women and 60 men aged 31-57 y. Estimated TEE and PAEE were significantly associated with criterion measures (TEE: r = 0.67; PAEE: r = 0.39) with mean (+/-SD) biases of -3452 +/- 2025 kJ/d and -13 +/- 24 kJ d(-1) kg(-1). The correlation between self-reported and measured time spent was significant for vigorous PA (r = 0.70) and marginally insignificant for sedentary time (r = 0.27, P = 0.06). The mean biases were relatively small for sedentary time and vigorous PA: 0.7 +/- 2.8 h/d and -12 +/- 24 min/d, respectively. The intraclass correlation coefficient for repeatability of total PAEE (kJ/d) was 0.76 (P < 0.0001). The RPAQ is the first questionnaire with demonstrated validity for ranking individuals according to their time spent at vigorous-intensity activity and overall energy expenditure.
    American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 11/2009; 91(1):106-14. · 6.50 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The present study investigates the cross-sectional relationship between tobacco smoking and body fatness. This cross-sectional study consisted of 469,543 men and women who participated in the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC) study between 1992 and 2000 providing anthropometric measurements and information on smoking. Adjusted multilevel mixed-effects linear regression models were used to assess the association between smoking and body fat mass. The analyses showed that BMI and WC were positively associated with smoking intensity in current smokers but negatively associated with time since quitting in former smokers. When compared to never smokers, average current smokers (17 and 13 cig/day for men and women, respectively) showed a lower BMI. When average former smokers (men and women who had stopped smoking for 16 and 15 years, respectively) were compared to never smokers, higher BMI and WC were observed in men, whereas no significant associations were observed in women. This cross-sectional study suggests that smoking may be associated with body fatness and fat distribution. Although our findings cannot establish cause and effect, they suggest that providing information and support to those who want to stop may help in preventing weight gain and therefore weaken a barrier against stopping smoking.
    Preventive Medicine 09/2009; 49(5):365-73. · 3.50 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Given the lack of consistent evidence of the relationship between Mediterranean dietary patterns and body fat, we assessed the cross-sectional association between adherence to a modified Mediterranean diet, BMI, and waist circumference (WC). A total of 497,308 individuals (70.7% women) aged 25-70 y from 10 European countries participated in this study. Diet was assessed at baseline using detailed validated country-specific questionnaires, and anthropometrical measurements were collected using standardized procedures. The association between the degree of adherence to the modified-Mediterranean Diet Score (mMDS) (including high consumption of vegetables, legumes, fruits and nuts, cereals, fish and seafood, and unsaturated:saturated fatty acids ratio; moderate alcohol intake; and low consumption of meat and meat products and dairy products) and BMI (kg.m(-2)) or WC (cm) was modeled through mixed-effects linear regression, controlling for potential confounders. Overall, the mMDS was not significantly associated with BMI. Higher adherence to the Mediterranean diet was significantly associated with lower WC, for a given BMI, in both men (-0.09; 95% CI -0.14 to -0.04) and women (-0.06; 95% CI -0.10 to -0.01). The association was stronger in men (-0.20; 95% CI -0.23 to -0.17) and women (-0.17; 95% CI -0.21 to -0.13) from Northern European countries. Despite the observed heterogeneity among regions, results of this study suggest that adherence to a modified Mediterranean diet, high in foods of vegetable origin and unsaturated fatty acids, is associated with lower abdominal adiposity measured by WC in European men and women.
    Journal of Nutrition 08/2009; 139(9):1728-37. · 4.20 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: While there are compelling observational data confirming that individuals who exercise are healthier, the efficacy of aerobic exercise interventions to reduce metabolic risk and improve insulin sensitivity in older people has not been fully elucidated. Furthermore, while low birth weight has been shown to predict adverse health outcomes later in life, its influence on the response to aerobic exercise is unknown. Our primary objective is to assess the efficacy of a fully supervised twelve week aerobic exercise intervention in reducing clustered metabolic risk in healthy older adults. A secondary objective is to determine the influence of low birth weight on the response to exercise in this group. We aim to recruit 100 participants born between 1931-1939, from the Hertfordshire Cohort Study and randomly assign them to no intervention or to 36 fully supervised one hour sessions on a cycle ergometer, over twelve weeks. Each participant will undergo detailed anthropometric and metabolic assessment pre- and post-intervention, including muscle biopsy, magnetic resonance imaging and spectroscopy, objective measurement of physical activity and sub-maximal fitness testing. Given the extensive phenotypic characterization, this study will provide valuable insights into the mechanisms underlying the beneficial effects of aerobic exercise as well as the efficacy, feasibility and safety of such interventions in this age group. Current Controlled Trials: ISRCTN60986572.
    BMC Endocrine Disorders 07/2009; 9:15. · 2.65 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Cross-sectional data suggest a strong association between low levels of physical activity and obesity. The EPIC-PANACEA (European Prospective Investigation into Cancer-Physical Activity, Nutrition, Alcohol, Cessation of Smoking, Eating out of home And obesity) project was designed to investigate the associations between physical activity and body mass index (BMI) and waist circumference based on individual data collected across nine European countries. In the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC), 519 931 volunteers were recruited between 1992 and 2000, of whom 405 819 had data on main variables of interest. Height, body weight and waist circumference were measured using standardized procedures. Physical activity was assessed using a validated four-category index reflecting a self-reported usual activity during work and leisure time. The associations between physical activity and BMI and waist circumference were estimated using multilevel mixed effects linear regression models, adjusted for age, total energy intake, smoking status, alcohol consumption and educational level. A total of 125 629 men and 280 190 women with a mean age of 52.9 (s.d. 9.7) and 51.5 (s.d. 10.0) years, respectively were included. The mean BMI was 26.6 kg/m(2) (s.d. 3.6) in men and 25.0 kg/m(2) (s.d. 4.5) in women. Fifty percent of men and 30% of women were categorized as being active or moderately active. A one-category difference in the physical activity index was inversely associated with a difference of 0.18 kg/m(2) in the mean BMI (95% confidence interval, CI, 0.11, 0.24) and 1.04-cm (95% CI 0.82, 1.26) difference in waist circumference in men. The equivalent figures for women were 0.31 kg/m(2) (95% CI 0.23, 0.38) and 0.90 cm (95% CI 0.71, 1.08), respectively. Physical activity is inversely associated with both BMI and waist circumference across nine European countries. Although we cannot interpret the association causally, our results were observed in a large and diverse cohort independently from many potential confounders.
    International journal of obesity (2005) 03/2009; 33(4):497-506. · 5.22 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The purpose of this study was to describe the association of the overall and domain-specific physical activity on all-cause and cardiovascular mortality. A large body of epidemiological evidence suggests a strong and consistent inverse association between physical activity and mortality risk. However, it is unclear how this association varies according to the domain of life in which the activity takes place. In an English population-based cohort of 14,903 participants (mean age = 63 yr), total and domain-specific physical activity was assessed using a validated questionnaire (EPAQ2). After a median follow-up of 7 yr, there were 1128 deaths, with 370 from cardiovascular disease. The relative risks (95% confidence interval) for all-cause mortality due to physical activity undertaken at home, during exercise, at work, for transport, and in total were 0.81 (0.66-0.99), 0.66 (0.54-0.80), 0.84 (0.55-1.30), 0.82 (0.67-1.00), and 0.77 (0.61-0.98), respectively, after adjustment for baseline age, sex, social class, alcohol consumption, smoking status, history of diabetes, history of cancer, and history of cardiovascular disease and stroke. Cardiovascular mortality was inversely associated with physical activity undertaken at home (P for trend = 0.03), during exercise (P for trend = 0.001), and in total (P for trend = 0.007). The results were unchanged after excluding individuals with a history of heart disease, stroke, and cancer at baseline and those who died within the first 2 yr of follow-up. In this study, physical activities at home and during exercise are associated with lower risk of mortality, whereas occupational and transportation-related activities are not. Promoting the potential benefits of physical activity undertaken at home and during exercise may be an important public health message for aging populations.
    Medicine and science in sports and exercise 11/2008; 40(11):1909-15. · 3.71 Impact Factor

Publication Stats

511 Citations
109.28 Total Impact Points

Institutions

  • 2009–2012
    • Medical Research Council (UK)
      Londinium, England, United Kingdom
  • 2011
    • University Medical Center Utrecht
      • Julius Center for Health Sciences and Primary Care
      Utrecht, Utrecht, Netherlands
  • 2010
    • IMS Health
      Parsippany, New Jersey, United Kingdom
  • 2008–2009
    • University of Cambridge
      • • MRC Epidemiology Unit
      • • Institute of Metabolic Science
      Cambridge, ENG, United Kingdom
  • 2006
    • International Agency for Research on Cancer
      Lyons, Rhône-Alpes, France