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Be Well

Difficulty sitting, rising may predict early death

Adults who have difficulty sitting and getting up off the floor may be at risk for early death, according to new study by researchers in Brazil.

In the study, researchers rated the ability of more than 2,000 adults aged 51 to 80 on how easy it was for them to sit and then rise from the floor. The researchers used a 0 to 5 scale for each participant and deducted one point for each time the participant had to use support to assist them, such as a hand or a knee.

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Those who scored the lowest on the sitting-rising test, regardless of their age or body mass index, had the highest likelihood of death when the researchers followed up six years after the initial study. However, for each higher point scored, the chance of survival increased by 21 percent, the study found.

The study suggests that physical strength and flexibility are important ways to predict an adult’s chance of living or dying, the researchers wrote.

BOTTOM LINE: Difficulty in easily sitting and standing up off the floor may be a predictor of early death.

CAUTIONS: Researchers could not conclude that the cause of death among those who scored lowest on the sitting-rising test was due to physical constraints and not other underlying medical conditions.

WHERE TO FIND IT:  European
Journal of Preventive Cardiology,
December issue

Technology devices may help achieve weight-loss goal

Weight-loss programs may be more successful with the help of mobile technology devices, a new study suggests.

In the study, researchers assigned 69 adults to participate in a biweekly weight-loss treatment program either with or without mobile technology. The mobile device helped the participants monitor their diet intake and physical activity levels. The participants with the mobile device also received biweekly coaching calls for the first six months.

The researchers followed up with each group every three months for one year and found that the group that used a mobile device along with their program lost 3 percent more weight overall every three months compared with the group that solely used the standard program. Forty-one percent of participants who used the mobile device along with the weight-loss program lost 5 percent of their initial body weight within the first three months, and an average of 8 pounds more than the standard program participants, the study found.

BOTTOM LINE: Mobile technology added to a weight-loss program can be helpful in achieving a desired weight-loss goal.

CAUTIONS: Because of the small number of study participants, the findings may not apply to a wider group. The study does not look at whether the participants in either group were successful in maintaining their weight loss after the initial year of the program.

WHERE TO FIND IT:  Archives of
Internal Medicine, Dec. 10

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