Overestimation of physical activity level is associated with lower BMI: A cross-sectional analysis

Watkinson, Clare, van Sluijs, Esther M. F., Sutton, Stephen, Hardeman, Wendy ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-6498-9407, Corder, Kirsten and Griffin, Simon J. (2010) Overestimation of physical activity level is associated with lower BMI: A cross-sectional analysis. International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity, 7. ISSN 1479-5868

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Background: Poor recognition of physical inactivity may be an important barrier to healthy behaviour change, but little is known about this phenomenon. We aimed to characterize a high-risk population according to the discrepancies between objective and self-rated physical activity (PA), defined as awareness.  Methods: An exploratory cross-sectional analysis of PA awareness using baseline data collected from 365 ProActive participants between 2001 and 2003 in East Anglia, England. Self-rated PA was defined as 'active' or 'inactive' (assessed via questionnaire). Objective PA was defined according to achievement of guideline activity levels (≥30 minutes or <30 minutes spent at least moderate intensity PA, assessed by heart rate monitoring). Four awareness groups were created: 'Realistic Actives', 'Realistic Inactives', 'Overestimators' and 'Underestimators'. Logistic regression was used to assess associations between awareness group and 17 personal, social and biological correlates.  Results: 63.3% of participants (N = 231) were inactive according to objective measurement. Of these, 45.9% rated themselves as active ('Overestimators'). In a multiple logistic regression model adjusted for age and smoking, males (OR = 2.11, 95% CI = 1.12, 3.98), those with lower BMI (OR = 0.89, 95% CI = 0.84, 0.95), younger age at completion of full-time education (OR = 0.83, 95% CI = 0.74, 0.93) and higher general health perception (OR = 1.02 CI = 1.00, 1.04) were more likely to overestimate their PA.  Conclusions: Overestimation of PA is associated with favourable indicators of relative slimness and general health. Feedback about PA levels could help reverse misperceptions.

Item Type: Article
Faculty \ School: Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences > School of Health Sciences
UEA Research Groups: Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences > Research Groups > Health Promotion
Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences > Research Centres > Lifespan Health
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Depositing User: Pure Connector
Date Deposited: 19 Nov 2015 08:19
Last Modified: 19 Oct 2023 01:31
URI: https://ueaeprints.uea.ac.uk/id/eprint/55430
DOI: 10.1186/1479-5868-7-68

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