Nevin Manimala Statistics

How sedentary are Canadian adults? It depends on the measure

Health Rep. 2022 Oct 19;33(10):14-27. doi: 10.25318/82-003-x202201000002-eng.


INTRODUCTION: The new Canadian 24-Hour Movement Guidelines for Adults aged 18-64 years and Adults aged 65 years and older recommend that adults limit daily sedentary time to eight hours or less, including three hours or less of recreational screen time. The eight-hour recommendation was centred between the evidence from research using self-reported sitting time (threshold: seven hours or less per day) and accelerometer-measured sedentary time (threshold: nine hours or less per day). The purpose of this study is to compare the percentages of Canadians meeting three different sedentary thresholds (three hours or less per day of screen time, seven hours or less per day of self-reported sitting time and nine hours or less per day of accelerometer-measured sedentary time).

METHODS: This analysis is based on 2,511 adults (aged 18 to 79 years) from Cycle 3 of the Canadian Health Measures Survey, in 2012 and 2013. Screen time and sitting time were assessed via self-report, and average daily sedentary time was assessed using a hip-worn Actical accelerometer.

RESULTS: Adults self-reported an average daily screen time of 3.2 hours (95% confidence interval [CI]: 3.0 to 3.5) and an average daily sitting time of 5.7 hours (95% CI: 5.4 to 6.0). According to accelerometry data, adults accumulated an average of 9.8 hours per day (95% CI: 9.7 to 9.9) of sedentary time. Adherence varied, with 57.7% meeting the self-reported recreational screen time threshold of three hours or less per day, 71.7% meeting the self-reported sitting time threshold of seven hours or less per day and 26.5% meeting the accelerometer-measured sedentary time threshold of nine hours or less per day.

INTERPRETATION: The percentage of Canadian adults meeting the three different sedentary behaviour thresholds varied widely. The findings in this article highlight the difference in sedentary time between what Canadians report versus what is measured by an accelerometer.

PMID:36287575 | DOI:10.25318/82-003-x202201000002-eng

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