Email updates

Keep up to date with the latest news and content from IJBNPA and BioMed Central.

Open Access Highly Accessed Research

Objectively measured light-intensity lifestyle activity and sedentary time are independently associated with metabolic syndrome: a cross-sectional study of Japanese adults

Junghoon Kim12, Kai Tanabe1, Noriko Yokoyama1, Hirofumi Zempo1 and Shinya Kuno1*

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Sports Medicine, Graduate School of Comprehensive Human Sciences, University of Tsukuba, 305-8577, Tsukuba, Ibaraki, Japan

2 Japan Society for the Promotion of Science, Tokyo, Japan

For all author emails, please log on.

International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity 2013, 10:30  doi:10.1186/1479-5868-10-30

Published: 4 March 2013

Abstract

Background

Reducing sedentary time and increasing lifestyle activities, including light-intensity activity, may be an option to help prevent metabolic syndrome (MetS). The purpose of the present study was to examine whether objectively measured light-intensity lifestyle activity and sedentary time is associated with MetS, independent of moderate–vigorous intensity physical activity (MVPA).

Methods

The participants in this cross-sectional study were 483 middle-aged Japanese adults, aged 30–64 years. The participants were divided into those with or without MetS according to the Japanese criteria for MetS. A triaxial accelerometer was used to measure light-intensity lifestyle activity [1.6–2.9 metabolic equivalents (METs)] and sedentary time (≤1.5 METs). Logistic regression was used to predict MetS from the levels of light-intensity lifestyle activity and sedentary time with age, sex, smoking, calorie intake, accelerometer wear time, and MVPA as covariates.

Results

The odds ratios (OR) for MetS in the highest and middle tertiles of light-intensity lifestyle activity were 0.44 [95% confidence interval (CI): 0.24 to 0.81] and 0.51 (95% CI: 0.29 to 0.89) relative to the lowest tertile, after adjustment for age, sex, smoking, calorie intake, accelerometer wear time and MVPA (Ptrend = 0.012). Sedentary time was also associated with the risk of MetS (Ptrend = 0.018). Among participants in the highest tertile of sedentary time, the risk of MetS was 2.27-times greater than that in the lowest tertile (95% CI: 1.25 to 4.11). The risk of MetS was not significantly increased in subjects in the middle tertile of sedentary time.

Conclusions

We found that light-intensity lifestyle activity and sedentary time were significantly associated with the risk of MetS, independent of MVPA. The results of our study suggest that public health messages and guidelines should be refined to include increases in light-intensity lifestyle activity and/or decreases in sedentary time, alongside promoting MVPA, to prevent MetS.

Keywords:
Lifestyle activity; Light-intensity activity; Metabolic syndrome; Sedentary time