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Prenatal and childhood growth and physical performance in old age - findings from the Helsinki Birth Cohort Study

Prenatal and childhood growth and physical performance in old age - findings from the Helsinki Birth Cohort Study
Prenatal and childhood growth and physical performance in old age - findings from the Helsinki Birth Cohort Study
Health in adulthood is in part a consequence of development and growth taking place during sensitive periods in early life. It has not been explored previously whether early growth is associated with physical performance in old age from a life course perspective taking into account health-related behavior, biological risk factors, and early life experiences. At a mean age of 71 years, physical performance was assessed using the Senior Fitness Test (SFT) in 1078 individuals belonging to the Helsinki Birth Cohort Study. We used multiple linear regression analysis to assess the association between the SFT physical fitness scores and individual life course measurements. Several adult characteristics were associated with physical performance including socioeconomic status, lifestyle factors, and adult anthropometry. Higher birth weight and length were associated with better physical performance, even after adjusting for potential confounders (all p values <0.05). The strongest individual association between life course measurements and physical performance in old age was found for adult body fat percentage. However, prenatal growth was independently associated with physical performance seven decades later. These findings suggest that physical performance in old age is at least partly programmed in early life.
physical performance, senior fitness test, prenatal growth, birth weight, aging, physical fitness
0161-9152
1-11
Eriksson, J.G.
eda300d2-b247-479f-95b9-f12d2c72e92b
Osmond, C.
2677bf85-494f-4a78-adf8-580e1b8acb81
Perala, M.M.
2eb306a3-7103-4877-81c9-858afc568af9
Salonen, M.K.
376ccd5d-a164-40aa-b0d6-5117ce2e7e56
Simonen, M.
5b4fd33c-15a1-4f8c-a164-9236bbbc0596
Pohjolainen, P.
40edd956-aa70-4f2d-9d8b-5bf4a7a557b3
Kajantie, E.
d4e32f85-9988-4b83-b353-012210ea0151
Rantanen, T.
9bc8e012-9255-4eb5-8c70-6e619917513e
von Bonsdorff, M.B.
87109bb7-0b2f-4db5-8b66-459142573ca3
Eriksson, J.G.
eda300d2-b247-479f-95b9-f12d2c72e92b
Osmond, C.
2677bf85-494f-4a78-adf8-580e1b8acb81
Perala, M.M.
2eb306a3-7103-4877-81c9-858afc568af9
Salonen, M.K.
376ccd5d-a164-40aa-b0d6-5117ce2e7e56
Simonen, M.
5b4fd33c-15a1-4f8c-a164-9236bbbc0596
Pohjolainen, P.
40edd956-aa70-4f2d-9d8b-5bf4a7a557b3
Kajantie, E.
d4e32f85-9988-4b83-b353-012210ea0151
Rantanen, T.
9bc8e012-9255-4eb5-8c70-6e619917513e
von Bonsdorff, M.B.
87109bb7-0b2f-4db5-8b66-459142573ca3

Eriksson, J.G., Osmond, C., Perala, M.M., Salonen, M.K., Simonen, M., Pohjolainen, P., Kajantie, E., Rantanen, T. and von Bonsdorff, M.B. (2015) Prenatal and childhood growth and physical performance in old age - findings from the Helsinki Birth Cohort Study. Age, 37 (108), 1-11. (doi:10.1007/s11357-015-9846-1). (PMID:26499818)

Record type: Article

Abstract

Health in adulthood is in part a consequence of development and growth taking place during sensitive periods in early life. It has not been explored previously whether early growth is associated with physical performance in old age from a life course perspective taking into account health-related behavior, biological risk factors, and early life experiences. At a mean age of 71 years, physical performance was assessed using the Senior Fitness Test (SFT) in 1078 individuals belonging to the Helsinki Birth Cohort Study. We used multiple linear regression analysis to assess the association between the SFT physical fitness scores and individual life course measurements. Several adult characteristics were associated with physical performance including socioeconomic status, lifestyle factors, and adult anthropometry. Higher birth weight and length were associated with better physical performance, even after adjusting for potential confounders (all p values <0.05). The strongest individual association between life course measurements and physical performance in old age was found for adult body fat percentage. However, prenatal growth was independently associated with physical performance seven decades later. These findings suggest that physical performance in old age is at least partly programmed in early life.

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Accepted/In Press date: 14 October 2015
e-pub ahead of print date: 24 October 2015
Published date: December 2015
Keywords: physical performance, senior fitness test, prenatal growth, birth weight, aging, physical fitness
Organisations: Faculty of Medicine

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 385395
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/385395
ISSN: 0161-9152
PURE UUID: 3d72da3e-1d5b-43aa-9728-7adef0df61e8
ORCID for C. Osmond: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-9054-4655

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Date deposited: 19 Jan 2016 15:10
Last modified: 18 Feb 2021 16:45

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Contributors

Author: J.G. Eriksson
Author: C. Osmond ORCID iD
Author: M.M. Perala
Author: M.K. Salonen
Author: M. Simonen
Author: P. Pohjolainen
Author: E. Kajantie
Author: T. Rantanen
Author: M.B. von Bonsdorff

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