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Conjoint Associations of Adherence to Physical Activity and Dietary Guidelines With Cardiometabolic Health: The Framingham Heart Study

Maura E. WalkerMaximillian T. BourdillonNicole L. SpartanoGail T. RogersPaul F. JacquesRamachandran S. Vasan and Vanessa Xanthakis

2021https://doi.org/10.1161/JAHA.120.019800Journal of the American Heart Association. ;0:e019800

Abstract

Background

The conjoint associations of adherence to the recent physical activity and dietary guidelines with the metabolic syndrome (MetS) are incompletely understood.

Methods and Results

We evaluated 2379 FHS (Framingham Heart Study) Third Generation participants (mean age, 47 years; 54.4% women) attending examination cycle 2. We examined the cross‐sectional relations of adherence to the 2018 Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans (binary; moderate‐to‐vigorous physical activity ≥150 versus <150 min/wk) and 2015 Dietary Guidelines for Americans (binary; 2015 Dietary Guidelines for Americans Adherence Index ≥median versus <median [score, 62.1/100]) with prevalence of the MetS using generalized linear models. We also related adherence to guidelines with the incidence of MetS prospectively, using Cox proportional hazards regression with discrete time intervals. Adherence rates to the 2018 Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans (odds ratio [OR], 0.49; 95% CI, 0.40–0.60) and 2015 Dietary Guidelines for Americans (OR, 0.67; 95% CI, 0.51–0.90) were individually associated with lower odds of prevalent MetS, whereas conjoint adherence to both guidelines was associated with the lowest odds of MetS (OR, 0.35; 95% CI, 0.26–0.47) compared with the referent group (nonadherence to both guidelines). Adherence rates to the 2018 Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans (hazard ratio [HR], 0.66; 95% CI, 0.50–0.88) and 2015 Dietary Guidelines for Americans (HR, 0.68; 95% CI, 0.51–0.90) were associated with lower risk of MetS, prospectively. In addition, we observed a 52% lower risk of MetS in individuals who adhered to both guidelines compared with the referent group.

Conclusions

Maintaining both regular physical activity and a healthy diet in midlife may be required for optimal cardiometabolic health in later life.