Lower Extremity Function Original Study| Volume 20, ISSUE 10, P1206-1212.e3, October 2019

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Sedentary Behavior, Physical Activity, and All-Cause Mortality: Dose-Response and Intensity Weighted Time-Use Meta-analysis



      Previous studies have placed those with excessive sedentary behavior at increased risk of all-cause mortality. There is evidence of interdependency of sedentary behavior with physical activity, and its elucidation will have implications for guidelines and practice. This study investigated if sedentary behavior–related mortality risk can be offset by moderate- to vigorous-intensity physical activity (MVPA) considered in a time-use fashion.


      PubMed was searched (from its inception till May 2018) for studies or meta-analyses that used data harmonized for MVPA. Of the 17 data-custodians located, 7 provided data on sitting time or TV viewing time, or both. A dose-response meta-analysis modeling log relative risks of all-cause mortality against uncompensated sedentary behavior metabolic equivalent hours (USMh) was run using the robust error meta-regression method. (Registration: CRD42017062439)


      Individual subject data held by data custodians on this topic.


      General adults.


      Sedentary time, MVPA.


      Five harmonized cohorts of sitting time (258,688 participants) and 4 of TV viewing time (156,593 participants) demonstrated that sedentary behavior was significantly associated with mortality, but this risk was attenuated with increasing energy expenditure through MVPA modeled in a time-use fashion. The average increment in mortality per USMh spent on sitting was 1% [relative risk (RR) 1.01, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.00, 1.02; P = .01] and that per USMh spent on TV viewing was 7% (RR 1.07, 95% CI 1.04, 1.10; P < .001). The thresholds for risk started at 7 USMh for sitting and 3 USMh for TV viewing.


      Our findings suggest that overall daily sitting time energy expenditure of 7 MET-hours (or TV viewing of 3 MET-hours) in excess of that expended on MVPA is independently related to all-cause mortality. These findings support the view that sitting is strongly influenced by consideration of concurrent MVPA in its impact on adverse health consequences and that the USMh is a more practical metric of sedentary behavior.


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