Abstract 1354: Healthy Lifestyle in Older Age and 7-Year Survival After 80 Years Old
BACKGROUND: Though well studied as single cardiovascular risk factors, how lifestyle-related factors such as smoking, diet, physical activity, and drinking - often clustered together in the same individuals - affect health risks in older age have not been adequately examined.
METHODS: NIH-funded China Longitudinal Healthy Longevity Study began in 1998 with 8,959 adults 80 years or older living in 22 out of 31 provinces in China. Seventy-two percent (6,461, 35.2% octogenarians, 34.5% nonagenarians, and 30.3% centenarians) had complete data in 7 years of follow-up until 2005 with 14.9% still surviving. Healthy lifestyle is classified as having 0, 1, 2, 3, 4 or 5 of the following characteristics: not currently smoking, regular physical activity, moderate drinking, healthful diet (based on frequent consumptions of at least 3 out of four broad food groups - fish, beans, fruits, and vegetables), and having a body weight in the two middle quartiles (body height not measured). The binary outcome of 7-year survival was modeled with multivariable logistic regression.
RESULTS: After adjusting for age, gender, education in years, residence (urban vs. rural), marital status, blood pressure groups (normal, pre-hypertensive, hypertensive), and heart rate groups (=90 beats per minute), odds ratios of survival in 7 years were higher with increasing number of healthy lifestyle factors (see table⇓).
CONCLUSION: Our study provides the first piece of evidence demonstrating a strong positive association between number of healthy lifestyle factors and better survival after age 80. Together with other studies, these findings from the oldest old population in China reveal the benefits - even into very old age - of life-long healthy lifestyle.