Leisure-time physical activity and diet quality are not associated in people with chronic spinal cord injury
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STUDY DESIGN: Cross-sectional. OBJECTIVE: To determine the association between leisure-time physical activity (LTPA) and adherence to Eating Well with Canada's Food Guide (CFG) in community-dwelling adults with chronic Spinal Cord Injury (SCI). SETTING: Ontario, Canada. METHODS: Participants were recruited as part of the Study of Health and Activity in People with SCI (SHAPE-SCI). Dietary data were collected using 24-h recalls and analysed for adherence to CFG recommendations by age group and gender. LTPA was assessed using the Physical Activity Recall Assessment for Persons with SCI. Statistical analysis comprised correlations, multiple regression and χ(2). RESULTS: We studied 75 adults (n=61 M; 42.4±11.8 years; 25.5±5.2 kg m(-2)) with chronic (≥1-year post-injury) SCI. Of these, 37% of participants were inactive, 29% were low-active and 33% were high-active. Fewer than 5% of participants were 100% adherent with CFG; 85% were adherent to ≤50%. Activity level and overall adherence to CFG were not correlated (r=-0.052, P=0.666). Although there were no associations between LTPA and vegetables and fruit, grain products, milk and alternatives, or other foods (all P>0.05), high activity was associated with consuming less than the minimum number of recommended servings of meat and alternatives (φ=-0.258, P=0.026). CONCLUSION: Clinicians need to be aware of the poor diet quality, and low levels of physical activity, of people with chronic SCI. They should not assume that those who are more active consume better quality diets than those who are low active or inactive. SPONSORSHIP: Canadian Institutes of Health Research.
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