(HealthDay News) – For older women, increased sedentary time is associated with increased mortality risk after multivariate adjustment, according to a study published in the February issue of the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.

Rebecca Seguin, PhD, from Cornell University in Ithaca, NY, and colleagues examined the correlation between sedentary time and total, cardiovascular disease, coronary heart disease, and cancer mortality in a cohort of 92,234 women aged 50–79 years at baseline (1993–1998). The women were from the Women’s Health Initiative Observational Study and were followed up through September 2010. Self-reported sedentary time was assessed by questionnaire and classified into four categories. The correlations were assessed after adjustment for confounders.

During a mean follow-up period of 12 years, the researchers found that in a multivariate model, women reporting the highest sedentary time had significantly increased risk of all-cause mortality (hazard ratio, 1.12; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.05–1.21), compared with women who reported the least sedentary time. The hazard ratios comparing the highest vs. lowest sedentary time were 1.13 (95% CI, 0.99–1.29) for cardiovascular disease mortality; 1.27 (95% CI, 1.04–1.55) for coronary heart disease mortality; and 1.21 (95% CI, 1.07–1.37) for cancer mortality. Linear tests for trend were significant for all mortality outcomes.

“With consideration to prior studies with similar populations of focus, recommendations from health care providers as well as public health messaging that specifically discourage extended daily sedentary behaviors by aging individuals appear well supported,” the authors write.

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