Studies have indicated that sufficient physical activity levels and balanced dietary behavior are independently related to physical function in older populations; however, their joint association with physical function remain unclear. This study examined the independent and combined associations of sufficient physical activity and balanced selection of foods with lower limb strength among 122 older Taiwanese adults living in community (mean age: 69.9 ± 5.0 years). The assessments included accelerometer-measured moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA) and self-reported selection of foods. Lower limb strength performance was measured using the five times sit-to-stand test. Binary logistic regression analyses were performed to estimate the associations in question before and after adjusting for potential confounders. The results showed that in the adjusted model, lower limb strength had no significant independent association with either meeting the recommended level of MVPA or balanced selection of foods. Compared to older adults who neither met the recommended MVPA level nor reported a balanced selection of foods, those who conformed to both these criteria were more likely to have better lower limb strength (odds ratio = 6.28, 95% confidence interval = 1.36–29.01) after adjusting for covariates. Health promotion initiatives addressing disability prevention for older adults need to consider promoting both MVPA and food selection.
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