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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle

The Association between Difficulty Seeing and Physical Activity among 17,777 Adults Residing in Spain

Faculty of Sport Sciences, University of Murcia, 30720 Murcia, Spain
Department of Social and Preventive Medicine, Center for Public Health, Medical University of Vienna, 1090 Vienna, Austria
Italian Agency for Development Cooperation, Jerusalem 9135400, Israel
Cancer Epidemiology and Prevention Research, Alberta Health Services, Calgary, AB T2S 3C3, Canada
Cambridge Centre for Sport and Exercise Science, Anglia Ruskin University, Cambridge CB1 1PT, UK
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(21), 4267;
Received: 14 October 2019 / Revised: 30 October 2019 / Accepted: 31 October 2019 / Published: 3 November 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Physical Activity and Health)
This is the first representative population-based study exploring the association between difficulty seeing (i.e., low vision) and physical activity in Spain. Cross-sectional data from the Spanish National Health Survey 2017 were analysed (n = 17,777, ≥15 years; 52% females). Difficulty seeing was self-reported in response to the question ‘‘Do you have difficulty seeing?” The international physical activity questionnaire (IPAQ) short form was used to measure level of physical activity. Multivariable logistic regression was used to assess associations overall and by age group (15–49, 50–64, ≥65 years). Covariates included in the analysis were sex, age, education, marital status, use of glasses or contact lenses, cataracts, diabetes, obesity, hypertension, smoking and alcohol consumption. The overall prevalence of difficulty seeing was 11%, and the overall prevalence of participating in less than 600 metabolic equivalent (MET)-min/week of physical activity was 30.2%. After adjustment for covariates, difficulty seeing was associated with significantly higher odds of performing less than 600 MET-min/week of physical activity with the odds ratio (OR) = 1.222 (95% confidence interval = 1.099–1.357). Considering the impact on health and quality of life due to reduced physical activity in people with difficulty seeing, at least 600 MET-min/week of physical activity should be promoted to this population. View Full-Text
Keywords: vision problems; diabetic eye disease; physical activity; public health vision problems; diabetic eye disease; physical activity; public health
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López-Sánchez, G.F.; Grabovac, I.; Pizzol, D.; Yang, L.; Smith, L. The Association between Difficulty Seeing and Physical Activity among 17,777 Adults Residing in Spain. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16, 4267.

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