Sedentary behavior has emerged as a new risk factor for health. The elderly spend most of their waking time in sedentary activities. Despite the fact that several studies have demonstrated the impact of sedentary behavior on the health of older adults, few studies have been done with an older Taiwanese population. We systematically reviewed epidemiologic evidence for associations between sedentary behavior and multiple health outcomes in older adults in order to provide crucial information for clinical research and practice. We searched the PUBMED database for observational studies published from January 2007 to December 2016, and found 19 eligible articles. The results showed that greater sedentary time was related to an increased risk of mortality from all causes in older adults. Some studies showed consistent results and indicated a relationship between sedentary behavior and metabolic syndrome, overweight/obesity, and diabetes; the findings relative to cancer remain insufficient to draw conclusions. This systematic review supported the relationship between sedentary behavior and mortality in older adults. Further research on this topic should utilize a nationally representative sample, a large-scale prospective cohort study, and adjustment for multiple confounders. Furthermore, investigations of an ecologic model with different domains of sedentary behavior and data collection with a combination of subjective and objective measures of sedentary behavior are recommended.
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