The effect of selected lifestyle factors and diet on mortality of men with documented physical fitness in the city of Łódź

Janusz Śmigielski 1, 2  ,  
Anna Jeger 3,  
Department of Computer Science and Medical Statistics, Medical University of Lodz, Łódź, Poland
Department of Computer Science and Medical Statistics, Medical University of Lodz, Plac Hallera 1, 90-647, Łódź, Poland
Department of Sports Medicine, Medical University of Lodz, Łódź, Poland
Department of Social Pathologies, Medical University of Lodz, Łódź, Poland
Department of Preventive Medicine, Medical University of Lodz, Łódź, Poland
Int J Occup Med Environ Health 2013;26(4):535–544
Introduction: It is still uncertain if having at least moderate physical fitness is a necessary and sufficient condition for lowering the risk of death. The aforementioned statement constituted the basis for undertaking the study concerning the effect of particular health-related behaviours on the likelihood of survival in subjects with a moderate and high physical fitness. Materials and Methods: The study sample, i.e. 204 men aged 30-59 years living in Łódź, Poland, was selected within the CINDI WHO Programme and examined over the years 1980-1990 and 2003-2004. In each subject approximate values of one week energy expenditures associated with performing physical exercise of at least moderate intensity (> 1000 kcal/week) were estimated. Physical efficiency in the study group was evaluated basing on the results of the submaximal effort test. Information about selected socio-demographic characteristics, consumption of alcohol, cigarette smoking and diet was gathered. The vital status of the examined sample was checked in 2009. The Cox proportional hazards regression model was used to identify factors which influence the survival of examined population. Results: The probability of death was more than fourfold higher in the case of individuals who eat "beef or pork meat", as compared to those who consumed these products rarely or never. On the other hand, the subjects who declared regular consumption of yellow cheese had nearly fourfold lower death probability. Current smoking was found to be a significant negative risk factor while moderate consumption of beer a protective one. The level of physical fitness (VO2max) did not significantly influence mortality. Conclusions: The results of the performed analyses indicate negative effect associated with consumption of beef/pork meat and smoking. Furthermore, the data pertaining to the consumption of yellow cheese as a potent protective factor for men's health requires further verification. The possibility that it is some lifestyle proxy rather than a causal factor can not be excluded.