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Article

Role for Physical Fitness in the Association between Age and Cognitive Function in Older Adults: A Mediation Analysis of the SABE Colombia Study

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Faculty of Sport Sciences, University of Extremadura, 10003 Cáceres, Spain
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Epidemiology of Physical Activity and Fitness Across Lifespan Research Group, University of Seville, 41092 Seville, Spain
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Department of Physical Education and Sport, University of Seville, 41092 Seville, Spain
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Faculty of Education, Psychology and Sport Sciences, University of Huelva, Avenida de las Fuerzas Armadas s/n 21007, 21007 Huelva, Spain
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Instituto de Actividad Fisica y Salud, Universidad Autonoma de Chile, 1670 Talca, Chile
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Hospital Universitario San Ignacio–Aging Institute, Pontificia Universidad Javeriana, Bogotá 110111, Colombia
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Navarrabiomed-Universidad Pública de Navarra (UPNA), Complejo Hospitalario de Navarra (CHN), Instituto de Investigación Sanitaria de Navarra (IdiSNA), Pamplona, 31008 Navarra, Spain
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CIBER of Frailty and Healthy Aging (CIBERFES), Instituto de Salud Carlos III, Pamplona, 28029 Navarra, Spain
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(2), 751; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18020751
Received: 16 December 2020 / Revised: 13 January 2021 / Accepted: 14 January 2021 / Published: 17 January 2021
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Physical Fitness in an Aged Population)
Objectives. We investigated the association between physical fitness and cognitive status. Further, we examined whether physical fitness mediates the association between cognitive functioning and aging. Design. Cross-sectional study. Setting. Urban and rural Colombian older adults. Methods. 4416 participants from the SABE study were included in the current analysis. Physical fitness was assessed with the handgrip test and the usual gait speed test. Cognitive status was evaluated through the Folstein Mini-Mental State Examination. A parallel mediation path was used to test the possible mediator role of physical fitness between aging and cognitive functioning. Results. Older adults with lower handgrip strength (HGS) were more likely to have mild-cognitive status than older adults with healthy HGS (OR = 1.53, 95% CI = 1.15; 2.02). In addition, older adults with a slower gait speed were more likely to have mild cognitive impairment (OR = 2.05, 95% CI = 1.54; 2.78). Age had an inverse relationship with cognitive function (β = −0.110, 95% CI = −0.130; −0.100) and it was also inversely associated with HGS (β = −0.003, 95% CI = −0.005; −0.002) and gait speed (β = −0.010, 95% CI = −0.011; −0.009). The indirect effects, which indicate that the effect of age on cognitive function is transmitted through mediators, showed that both gait speed (β = −0.028, 95% CI = −0.036; −0.020) and HGS (β = −0.014, 95% CI = −0.024; −0.005) were independent mediators of the detrimental effect of aging on cognitive function. Conclusions. Physical fitness mediates the effects of aging on cognitive functioning. Our findings suggest that physical activity can be a key factor to prevent cognitive deterioration during aging process. View Full-Text
Keywords: aging; physical function; cognitive status aging; physical function; cognitive status
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MDPI and ACS Style

Pérez-Sousa, M.Á.; del Pozo-Cruz, J.; Olivares, P.R.; Cano-Gutiérrez, C.A.; Izquierdo, M.; Ramírez-Vélez, R. Role for Physical Fitness in the Association between Age and Cognitive Function in Older Adults: A Mediation Analysis of the SABE Colombia Study. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18, 751. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18020751

AMA Style

Pérez-Sousa MÁ, del Pozo-Cruz J, Olivares PR, Cano-Gutiérrez CA, Izquierdo M, Ramírez-Vélez R. Role for Physical Fitness in the Association between Age and Cognitive Function in Older Adults: A Mediation Analysis of the SABE Colombia Study. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 2021; 18(2):751. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18020751

Chicago/Turabian Style

Pérez-Sousa, Miguel Á., Jesús del Pozo-Cruz, Pedro R. Olivares, Carlos A. Cano-Gutiérrez, Mikel Izquierdo, and Robinson Ramírez-Vélez. 2021. "Role for Physical Fitness in the Association between Age and Cognitive Function in Older Adults: A Mediation Analysis of the SABE Colombia Study" International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 18, no. 2: 751. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18020751

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