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Table 3 Characteristics of the MDCS population at baseline investigation (1991–1996)

From: Midlife physical activity is associated with lower incidence of vascular dementia but not Alzheimer’s disease

  All Low physical activity group Intermediate physical activity group High physical activity group
n = 20,639 n = 6882 n = 6882 n = 6875
Characteristics at baseline Median (IQR) or n (%) Median (IQR) or n (%) Median (IQR) or n (%) Median (IQR) or n (%)
Age at baseline, years 57.5 (51.0–63.8) 57.0 (50.9–63.7) 57.1 (50.8–63.4) 58.3 (51.6–64.2)***
Women 12,460 (60) 4205 (61) 4335 (63)* 3920 (57)***
Education
 Primary/elementary school (≤ 8 years) 8159 (40) 3041 (44) 2515 (37)*** 2603 (38)***
 Secondary school/high school (9–12 years) 7449 (36) 2387 (35) 2568 (37) 2494 (36)
 Higher education/university (≥ 13 years) 5001 (24) 1443 (21) 1793 (26) 1765 (26)
 Smoking, ever 12,573 (61) 40,239 (62) 4151 (60) 4183 (61)
 Systolic blood pressure, mmHg 140 (126–152) 140 (128–152) 140 (126–150)** 140 (126–152)
 Diastolic blood pressure, mmHg 85 (80–90) 85 (80–90) 85 (80–90)** 85 (80–90)**
 Body mass index, kg/m2 25.2 (22.9–27.7) 25.6 (23.2–28.3) 25.0 (22.8–27.5)*** 25.0 (22.9–27.4)***
 Alcohol, g/day 7.6 (1.9–15.6) 6.8 (1.3–15.3) 7.8 (2.3–15.7)*** 8.1 (2.3–15.9)***
 Physically heavy work 7659 (38) 2613 (39) 2444 (36)** 2602 (38)
 Physical activity score combined 13,300 (8460–19,785) 6720 (4589–8460) 13,304 (11602–15,076)*** 23,320 (19790–29,050)***
 Cardiovascular disease 543 (2.6) 205 (3.0) 166 (2.4)* 172 (2.5)
 Diabetes mellitus 790 (3.8) 305 (4.4) 235 (3.4)** 250 (3.6)*
 Blood pressure-lowering medication 3568 (17) 1323 (19) 1177 (17)** 1068 (16)***
 Lipid-lowering medication 629 (3.0) 207 (3.0) 205 (3.0) 217 (3.2)
APOE-ε4 carriersa 3306 (30) 1146 (31) 1055 (30) 1105 (30)
Dementia diagnoses at follow-up N events (incidence rate/1000 person-years)
 All-cause dementia 1375 (4.7) 455 (4.8) 460 (4.7) 460 (4.7)
 Vascular dementia 300 (1.0) 112 (1.2) 101 (1.0) 87 (0.9)
 Alzheimer’s dementia 834 (2.9) 266 (2.8) 271 (2.8) 297 (3.0)
 Age at dementia diagnosis 80.0 (75.7–83.7) 79.7 (75.8–83.2) 80.2 (75.7–84.1) 80.3 (75.8–84.1)
  1. Characteristics of the MDCS population at baseline investigation (1991–1996) for the total cohort, and by physical activity tertiles. Blood pressure and body mass index were measured at the baseline investigation in the Malmo Diet and Cancer Study. Cardiovascular disease (coronary disease or stroke) and diabetes mellitus (type 1 or 2) were derived from hospital registries at baseline. Dementia diagnoses were derived from registries and validated in e-charts. All other data was self-reported, derived from the baseline questionnaire. Group differences between participants in the lowest physical activity group compared to intermediate and high respectively were estimated with Mann-Whitney U test (numeric variables) and Pearson’s χ2 test (categorical variables). Only significant differences are noted in the table
  2. ***p < 0.001, **p < 0.01, *p < 0.05
  3. aData on 10,971 participants (53% of the study cohort)