Effects of changes in residential fast-food outlet exposure on Body Mass Index change: longitudinal evidence from 92,211 Lifelines participants

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BACKGROUND: Evidence on the association between fast-food outlet exposure and Body Mass Index (BMI) remains inconsistent and is primarily based on cross-sectional studies. We investigated the associations between changes in fast-food outlet exposure and BMI changes, and to what extent these associations are moderated by age and fast-food outlet exposure at baseline.

METHODS: We used 4-year longitudinal data of the Lifelines adult cohort (N = 92,211). Participant residential addresses at baseline and follow-up were linked to a register containing fast-food outlet locations using geocoding. Change in fast-food outlet exposure was defined as the number of fast-food outlets within 1 km of the residential address at follow-up minus the number of fast-food outlets within 1 km of the residential address at baseline. BMI was calculated based on objectively measured weight and height. Fixed effects analyses were performed adjusting for changes in covariates and potential confounders. Exposure-moderator interactions were tested and stratified analyses were performed if p < 0.10.

RESULTS: Participants who had an increase in the number of fast-food outlets within 1 km had a greater BMI increase (B(95% CI): 0.003 (0.001,0.006)). Decreases in fast-food outlet exposure were not associated with BMI change (B(95% CI): 0.001 (-0.001,0.004)). No clear moderation pattern by age or fast-food outlet exposure at baseline was found.

CONCLUSIONS: Increases in residential fast-food outlet exposure are associated with BMI gain, whereas decreases in fast-food outlet exposure are not associated with BMI loss. Effect sizes of increases in fast-food outlet exposure on BMI change were small at individual level. However, a longer follow-up period may have been needed to fully capture the impact of increases in fast-food outlet exposure on BMI change. Furthermore, these effect sizes could still be important at population level considering the rapid rise of fast-food outlets across society. Future studies should investigate the mechanisms and changes in consumer behaviours underlying associations between changes in fast-food outlet exposure and BMI change.

Originele taal-2English
Artikelnummer31
Aantal pagina's10
TijdschriftInternational journal of behavioral nutrition and physical activity
Volume21
DOI's
StatusPublished - 14-mrt.-2024

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