Latent Heterogeneity in Long-Term Trajectories of Body Mass Index in Older Adults

TitleLatent Heterogeneity in Long-Term Trajectories of Body Mass Index in Older Adults
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2013
AuthorsBotoseneanu, A, Liang, J
JournalJournal of Aging and Health
KeywordsHealth Conditions and Status, Healthcare

OBJECTIVE: To evaluate latent heterogeneity in long-term trajectories of body weight in older adults. METHODS: We analyzed 14-year longitudinal data on 10,314 older adults from the Health and Retirement Study. Semiparametric mixture models identified latent subgroups of similar trajectories of body mass index (BMI). RESULTS: Five distinct trajectory subgroups emerged: normal starting-BMI with accelerated increase over time (trajectory 1), overweight and increasing (trajectory 2), borderline-obese and increasing (trajectory 3), obese and increasing (trajectory 4), and morbidly obese with decelerating gain (trajectory 5). Blacks and Hispanics had greater risk of membership in ascending high-BMI trajectory groups. Females had approximately half the risk of following overweight and obese increasing BMI trajectories compared with males. DISCUSSION: Distinct latent subgroups of BMI trajectories and significant racial/ethnic and gender trajectory heterogeneity exist in the older adult population. The propensity of men and minorities to experience high-risk BMI trajectories may exacerbate existing disparities in morbidity/ mortality in older age.

Endnote Keywords

Obesity/health trajectories/health trajectories/MORBIDITY/Mortality

Endnote ID


Citation Key7913
PubMed ID23264442
PubMed Central IDPMC4325276