Travel mode, transportation-related physical activity, and risk of overweight in Taiwanese adults

Yung Liao*, Hsiu Hua Tsai, Ho Seng Wang, Ching Ping Lin, Min Chen Wu, Jui Fu Chen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Whether active travel and public transportation, as opposed to private vehicle use, are related to physical activity levels and the risk of overweight in Asian countries is unclear. Thus, this study examined the associations of transportation-related physical activity involving three modes of travel and the risk of overweight among Taiwanese adults. Methods: Data from 51,949 Taiwanese adults were used. The examined variables were objectively-measured height and body mass, self-reported main mode of travel (private vehicle, public transport, active travel), and time spent walking and cycling for transportation using the International Physical Activity Questionnaire-long version. Logistic regression modeling was performed. Results: After adjustment for potential confounders, public transportation and active travel were found to be significantly associated with a higher probability of engaging in 150 min/wk of transportation-related physical activity (odds ratio (OR)=2.35, 95% confidence interval (CI): 2.21, 2.49; OR=6.31, 95% CI: 5.95, 6.69) and a lower risk of overweight (OR=0.84, 95% CI: 0.79, 0.90; OR=0.83, 95% CI: 0.78, 0.88) compared with traveling by private motor vehicle. Similar patterns were observed in men and women. Conclusions: Using public transport might be as effective as active transportation to accumulate transport-related physical activity to achieve health-enhancing level and to be associated with lower odds of being overweight in Taiwanese adults. Encouraging public transportation use could promote physical activity and be considered a promising method of preventing overweight in both men and women.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)220-225
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Transport and Health
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2016 Jun 1


  • Adults
  • Overweight
  • Physical activity
  • Travel mode

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Safety, Risk, Reliability and Quality
  • Transportation
  • Pollution
  • Safety Research
  • Health Policy
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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