Association between lifestyle factors and quality-adjusted life years in the EPIC-NL cohort

PLoS One 2014; 9: e111480

Author

Fransen HP, May AM, Beulens JW, Struijk EA, de Wit GA, Boer JM, Onland-Moret NC, Hoekstra J, van der Schouw YT, Bueno-de-Mesquita HBPeeters PH

Abstract

The aim of our study was to relate four modifiable lifestyle factors (smoking status, body mass index, physical activity and diet) to health expectancy, using quality-adjusted life years (QALYs) in a prospective cohort study. Data of the prospective EPIC-NL study were used, including 33,066 healthy men and women aged 20-70 years at baseline (1993-7), followed until 31-12-2007 for occurrence of disease and death. Smoking status, body mass index, physical activity and adherence to a Mediterranean-style diet (excluding alcohol) were investigated separately and combined into a healthy lifestyle score, ranging from 0 to 4. QALYs were used as summary measure of healthy life expectancy, combining a person's life expectancy with a weight for quality of life when having a chronic disease. For lifestyle factors analyzed separately the number of years living longer in good health varied from 0.12 year to 0.84 year, after adjusting for covariates. A combination of the four lifestyle factors was positively associated with higher QALYs (P-trend <0.0001). A healthy lifestyle score of 4 compared to a score of 0 was associated with almost a 2 years longer life in good health (1.75 QALYs [95% CI 1.37, 2.14]).


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