Combined association between physical inactivity and non-white skin color exacerbates the chance of diabetes during the Covid-19 pandemic: a population-based study in Brazil
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Department of Clinical and Social Nutrition, Federal University of Ouro Preto, Brazil
Federal University of Ouro Preto, Brazil
Graduate Program in Health and Nutrition, Federal University of Ouro Preto, Brazil
Publication date: 2023-04-27
Popul. Med. 2023;5(Supplement):A1535
Introduction: The covid-19 pandemic has drastically impacted the daily lives of the population and changes in lifestyle patterns, such as reduced physical activity (PA). These new patterns may lead to changes in glycated hemoglobin (HbA1c) levels. Further, a racial-ethnic disparity of the pandemic's impacts is perceived, both with overall health care along with limited opportunities to be physically active. We assessed the association between HbA1c and physical inactivity (PI), stratified by skin color during social restriction. Methods: A population-based household seroepidemiological survey was conducted in two Brazilian cities. A face-to-face interview was conducted using a structured questionnaire in electronic format; sociodemographic questions, lifestyle habits, and health conditions were assessed. Blood draws were conducted to evaluate HbA1c levels. The practice of PA during leisure time was assessed categorically (active and inactive), according to the recommendations of the WHO. HbA1c was categorized into normal (≤6.4%) and diabetes mellitus (≥ 6.5%). The skin color was self-reported (white; non-white). The association between PI and HbA1c was performed by multivariate logistic regression stratified by skin color, and adjusted for age, sex, income and presence of comorbidities. The p values <0.05 were considered significant. Results: 1685 individuals were analyzed, being the majority female (52.4%) and aged between 35-59 years (45.8%). About 73.9% of the study population was non-white, 69.1% had education less than 9 years and 41.2% of individuals had monthly income ≤ 2 minimum wages. In addition, during leisure time, 69.7% were physically inactive, 9.3% had diabetes mellitus. When performing the combined analysis between these two factors, we found that inactive and non-white individuals were 4.03 times more likely to be diabetic (OR=4.03: 95% CI: 1.57-10.2). Conclusions: In a combined analysis, non-white individuals and PI during social restriction were associated with altered HbA1c levels when compared to physically active white individuals.