Leisure‐time physical activity and sarcopenia among older adults from low‐ and middle‐income countries

Louis Jacob, Razak M. Gyasi, Hans Oh, Lee Smith, Karel Kostev, Guillermo F. López Sánchez, Masoud Rahmati, Josep Maria Haro, Mark A. Tully, Jae Il Shin, Dong Keon Yon, Ai Koyanagi

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Background: There are no data on the association between leisure‐time physical activity (LTPA) and sarcopenia in older adults from low‐ and middle‐income countries (LMICs). This study aimed to investigate the association between LTPA and sarcopenia in individuals aged ≥65 years living in six LMICs.
Methods: Cross‐sectional data from the Study on Global AGEing and Adult Health (China, Ghana, India, Mexico, Russia and South Africa) were analysed. Sarcopenia referred to the presence of both low skeletal muscle mass and weak handgrip strength. LTPA was assessed using the Global Physical Activity Questionnaire and was analysed as a dichotomized variable [high LTPA (>150 min/week of moderate‐to‐vigorous LTPA) or low LTPA (≤150 min/week)]. Multivariable logistic regression analysis was conducted to assess associations.
Results: There were 14 585 individuals included in this study [mean (SD) age 72.6 (11.5) years; 55.0% women]. The prevalence of high LTPA and sarcopenia was 8.9% and 12.0%, respectively. After adjusting for potential confounders, low LTPA was significantly associated with higher odds for sarcopenia [prevalence odds ratio (POR) = 1.85, 95% confidence interval (CI) = 1.29–2.65] compared with high LTPA. Significant associations were found in women (POR = 3.22, 95% CI = 1.82–5.68) but not in men (POR = 1.52, 95% CI = 0.99–2.35).
Conclusions: A positive and significant association between low LTPA and sarcopenia was found among older adults from LMICs. The promotion of LTPA among older adults in LMICs may aid in the prevention of sarcopenia, especially among females, pending future longitudinal research.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1130-1138
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Cachexia, Sarcopenia and Muscle
Issue number2
Early online date5 Mar 2023
Publication statusPublished online - 5 Mar 2023

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This paper uses data from WHO's Study on Global AGEing and Adult Health (SAGE). SAGE is supported by the US National Institute on Aging through Interagency Agreements OGHA 04034785, YA1323‐08‐CN‐0020 and Y1‐AG‐1005‐01 and through Research Grants R01‐AG034479 and R21‐AG034263. Finally, the authors of this manuscript certify that they comply with the ethical guidelines for authorship and publishing in the . Journal of Cachexia, Sarcopenia and Muscle 40

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023 The Authors. Journal of Cachexia, Sarcopenia and Muscle published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of Society on Sarcopenia, Cachexia and Wasting Disorders.


  • Original Article
  • Original Articles
  • epidemiology
  • leisure‐time physical activity
  • low‐ and middle‐income countries
  • older adults
  • sarcopenia
  • leisure-time physical activity
  • low- and middle-income countries
  • Leisure Activities
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Sarcopenia/epidemiology
  • Exercise
  • Female
  • Aged
  • Developing Countries
  • Hand Strength


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