Associations between sexual activity and weight status: findings from the English Longitudinal Study of Ageing

Smith, Lee and Forwood, Suzanna E. and López Sánchez, Guillermo F. and Koyanagi, Ai and Veronese, Nicola and Soysal, Pinar and Grabovac, Igor and Jackson, Sarah E. (2019) Associations between sexual activity and weight status: findings from the English Longitudinal Study of Ageing. PLOS ONE, 14 (9). e0221979. ISSN 1932-6203

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Official URL: https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0221979

Abstract

Objective: To investigate the association between weight status and sexual activity in middle-aged and older adults. Methods: Cross-sectional analysis on Wave 6 (2012/13) of the English Longitudinal Study of Ageing. Data were from 2,200 men and 2,737 women aged ≥50 years (mean 68.2 years). The explanatory variable was weight status, defined as normal-weight (BMI: ≤24.9), overweight (BMI: 25.0-29.9) or obese (BMI: ≥30) based on objective measurements of height and weight. Outcome variables were any self-reported sexual activity in the last year (yes/no) and, if yes, frequency of sexual intercourse in the last month. Covariates included a range of sociodemographic, lifestyle, and health-related variables. Associations were analysed using binary (past-year sexual activity) and ordinal (frequency of past-month sexual intercourse) logistic regression models. Results: The majority (73.3%) of men and half (50.0%) of women reported any sexual activity in the last year. The odds of reporting any sexual activity in the last year did not differ significantly by weight status in either men or women. However, among those who were sexually active, men with overweight (OR=1.45, 95% CI 1.15-1.81, p=0.002) or obesity (OR=1.38, 95% CI 1.07-1.77, p=0.015), and women with overweight (OR=1.34, 95% CI 1.05-1.71, p=0.017) reported significantly more frequent sexual intercourse in the last month compared with those who had a BMI in the normal-weight range, after adjustment for covariates. Conclusion: Older adults with overweight or obesity who are sexually active engage in more frequent sexual activity than those who are normal weight.

Item Type: Journal Article
Keywords: Obesity, Sexual Activity, Older Adults
Faculty: Faculty of Science & Engineering
Depositing User: Lee Smith
Date Deposited: 21 Aug 2019 08:19
Last Modified: 24 Mar 2020 16:31
URI: http://arro.anglia.ac.uk/id/eprint/704658

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