Topical Area: Community and Public Health Nutrition
(P04-112-20) Group Activities Designed for Geriatric Nutrition at Community Centers Improve Frailty in Older Adults: A Place-Randomized Controlled Trial
Objectives: Recent interventional studies have shown that frailty can be improved by modifying dietary quality. In this study, we developed a set of nutrition-centric health promotion activities for elderly participants of the community care centers and examined the efficacy of these activities on slowing down the development or regression of frailty.
Methods: This cluster-randomized controlled trial was conducted between 09/2018 and 12/2019 at 13 communities in Taipei, Taiwan. Seven communities (124 subjects) was randomly assigned into the control group (1 hour exercise per week for 3 months) and another 6 (95 subjects) was in the intervention group (the exercise program + nutrition grouped activities, 1 hour per week for 3 months). The intervention programs included: (a) training on-site staffs to use motivational interview technique to communicate, to estimate participant’s energy requirement, and to learn how to provide proper amounts of foods to individual elderlies, (b) nutrition grouped activities on ①know my plate, ②wholegrains, ③ drinking teas with dairy, and nuts, ④novel ways to eat fruit and vegetables, ⑤healthy breakfast ideas. In the first month, we intervened with the activities laid out above; in the second month, we conducted a qualitative discussion on elders’ dietary changes; in the third month, we designed activities that helped break down barriers in order to establish long-term change in dietary habits. Improvement in frailty scores was the primary outcome. Secondary outcomes included nutritional status, physical performance, and mental health. The measurements were performed at baseline, 3 months, and 6 months.
Results: Overall, 190 subjects completed the trial. At post-intervention, the intervention group exhibited borderline significant improvements in the frailty scores (p=0.08) compared to the control. Significant improvements were also observed for grip strength (p=0.04), working memory (p=0.02), intakes of whole grains (p=0.01) and dairy (p< 0.001), and diastolic blood pressure level (p=0.02).
Conclusions: Group activities designed for improving geriatric nutrition in community centers showed its efficacy to improve frailty score, handgrip strength, working memory, blood pressure and dietary quality.
Funding Sources: Health Promotion Agency; Academia Sinica
Distinguished Professor Academia Sinica Taipei, Taipei, Taiwan (Republic of China)
Post-doctoral Fellow Academia Sinica Taipei, Taipei, Taiwan (Republic of China)