To analyze the effects of anthropometric measures change on quality of life (QoL) in elderly, using measured anthropometric data on body mass index (BMI) and waist circumference (WC).
Population-based cohort study investigating a sample of elderly (≥60) assessed in 2009 (n = 1705) and followed up in 2013 (n = 1197). QoL was evaluated in 2013 using the CASP-19. Variables evaluated as exposure including BMI and WC in 2009 (both standardized), categories of anthropometric measures change from 2009 to 2013 (excess weight = BMI ≥ 25.0 kg/m2; large WC = top quartile), and the absolute BMI and WC change in same period. Multivariate linear regressions adjusted for possible confounding factors and mediators were used.
Both BMI and WC at baseline were associated with lower QoL scores, even after adjustment for confounding variables (β BMI = −0.9; 95 % CI −1.5; −0.3 and β WC = −1.0; 95 % CI −1.7; −0.4). Additionally, QoL scores were lower among elderly with excess weight (β = −1.4; 95 % CI −2.9; 0.0) or large WC (β = −3.3; 95 % CI −5.2; −1.4) in both waves than among those whose BMI and WC were always normal, but changes in anthropometric measures did not affect QoL. The presence of chronic diseases was a partial mediator of these associations, especially for effects of BMI change. Anthropometric measures change treated as a continuous variable was not associated with QoL.
Having excess weight and large WC in both waves was associated with lower QoL scores in elderly, but changing the anthropometric measures did not affect this outcome. Maintaining weight and WC within normal limits during aging can help to preserve QoL.