Life-style factors associated with overweight and obesity among Spanish adults

Nutr Hosp. Mar-Apr 2009;24(2):144-51.


Objectives: To assess the relationship between life styles and eating habits with the overweight and obesity prevalence in a Spanish adult population.

Methods: A population-based, cross-sectional study conducted on 2640 subjects older than 15 years, in Cádiz (Spain). Surveys were conducted in subjects' homes to obtain life styles, eating habits, and anthropometric data. Logistic regression has been used to study the association between the life style variables and overweight and obesity.

Results: Prevalence of overweight and obesity in Cadiz is 37% and 17%, respectively; higher in males and increases with age. BMI has an inverse relationship with educational level (PR = 2.3, 1.57-2.38). The highest levels of obesity are associated with daily alcohol consumption (PR = 1.39, 1.29-1.50), greater consumption of television,and sedentary pursuit (PR 1.5, 1.07-1.24). A lower prevalence of obesity is observed among those with active physical activity (10.9% vs 21.6%), with differences between sex. Following a slimming diet is more frequent in the obese and in women but dedicate more hours than men to passive activities. In men is greater the consumption of alcohol, high energy foods and snacks. Overweight and obesity is associated with the male sex (OR = 3.35 2.75-4.07), high consumption of alcohol (OR = 1.38 1.03-1.86) and watching television (OR = 1.52 1.11-2.07), and foods likes bread and cereals (OR = 1.47 1.13-1.91). Exercise activities is a protective factor (OR = 0.76 0.63-0.98).

Conclusions: Life styles factors associated with overweight and obesity present different patterns in men and women and is necessary to understand them to identify areas for behavioural intervention in overweight and obesity patients.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Life Style*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Obesity / epidemiology
  • Overweight / epidemiology*
  • Prevalence
  • Spain / epidemiology
  • Young Adult