2020, Volume 1, Issue 1
The effects of the body mass index on the physical function and the quality of life in the elderly
Raziye Şavkın1, Gökhan Bayrak2, Nihal Büker1
1School of Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation, Pamukkale University
2Physiotherapy and Rehabilitation Department of Faculty of Health Sciences, Muş Alparslan University
Author for correspondence: Raziye Şavkın; School of Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation, Pamukkale University; email: email@example.com
Background: As in all age groups, the prevalence of overweight and obesity is gradually increasing in the elderly. The aim of this study is to examine the effect of the body mass index (BMI) on the physical function and the overall quality of life in the elderly.
Materials and methods: 265 community-dwelling older adults (131 women and 134 men) were included. BMI, grip strength (hand-held dynamometer), physical performance (Short Physical Performance Battery, SPPB) and overall quality of life (WHOQOL-BREF) were assessed.
Results: 265 older adults were divided into three groups: normal (n=66), overweight (n=116), obese (n=83). SPPS and WHOQOL-BREF psychological health scores of the normal group were statistically significantly higher than in the obese group (p≤0.005). The WHOQOL-BREF physical health score of the normal and the overweight groups was significantly higher than in the obese group (p≤0.005). Grip strength, SPPB and WHOQOL-BREF physical health scores of older men in all groups were better than in women (p≤0.005).
Conclusions: BMI negatively affects the physical function, physical health and the psychological domain of the quality of life in the elderly. In order to avoid or limit the effects of disability secondary to obesity and promote healthy ageing, the elderly should be encouraged to increase their physical activity and maintain healthy weight.
Key words: body mass index, older adult, quality of life, disability, physical functional performance