Well-being, physical activity and long-term conditions: cross-sectional analysis of Health Survey for England 2016

C. Harvey, P. Ratcliffe, M. C. Gulliford*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Objectives: We investigated whether physical activity is associated with greater well-being in people with multiple long-term conditions or limiting long-term illness (LLI). Study design: Cross-sectional analysis of data from the Health Survey for England 2016. Methods: The Warwick–Edinburgh mental well-being score (WEMWBS) was evaluated according to number of days per week with >30 min moderate or vigorous activity. LLI and number of long-term conditions were evaluated as effect modifiers, adjusting for age, sex, smoking, body mass index and education. Marginal effects were estimated for female non-smokers, aged 45–54 years. Results: Data were analyzed for 5952 adults (female, 3275; male, 2677) including 1104 (19%) with non-limiting long-term illness and 1486 (25%) with LLI. There were 2065 (35%) with 1–2 long-term conditions, 461 (8%) with 3–4 and 58 (1%) with 5–6 long-term conditions. Participants with LLI were less likely to engage in physical activity on 5 or more days per week (LLI, 24%; No LLI, 47%) and more likely to be inactive (LLI, 41%; No LLI 13%). The adjusted marginal mean WEMWBS for inactive participants with no long-term illness was 49.0 (95% confidence interval 48.1 to 50.0), compared with 51.1 (50.4–51.8) if active on 5+ days per week. In LLI, the adjusted marginal mean WEMWBS was 41.6 (40.7–42.5) if inactive but 47.6 (46.6–48.6) if active on 5+ days per week. Similar associations were observed for the number of long-term conditions. Conclusions: Physical activity may be associated with greater increments in well-being among people with multiple long-term conditions or LLI than those without.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)368-374
Number of pages7
JournalPublic Health
Volume185
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2020

Keywords

  • Long-term conditions
  • Long-term illness
  • Multiple morbidity
  • Physical activity
  • Well-being

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