The ninth information letter of the RECORD Study has been released and has been sent electronically to the research and public action community.
This issue of the letter summarizes a work on the contextual determinants of fat mass assessed by bioelectrical impedance analysis. In addition to the residential environment, this study was able to take into account (using data from CNAV) the geographic work environment of the participants and their work economic sector. This study shows among other aspects that men who were working in the Construction sector and in the Transportation and communication sector had a higher percentage of fat mass.
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The aim of this study was to investigate the associations between the spatial accessibility to specific types of sports facilities and the practice of the corresponding sports.
Four categories of sports were studied: team sports, racket sports, swimming and related activities, and fitness. The spatial accessibility to swimming pools was associated with swimming and related sports, even after adjustment for individual/contextual factors. The spatial accessibility to facilities was not related to the practice of the other sports. High neighborhood income was associated with the practice of a racket sport and fitness.
The eighth information letter of the RECORD Study was recently sent to the participants of the study.
Two specific studies are reported in this issue of the letter. The first work, which was conducted by the University of Montreal and published in the “Journal of Hypertension”, sought to assess whether a typology of neighborhoods based on a large number of environmental factors was associated with the blood pressure of the participants. The second study examined whether disparities in the spatial accessibility to different types of sport facilities were associated with the practice of the corresponding sports.
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In the second wave of the RECORD Study, we rely on the VERITAS interactive web mapping software to survey the participants of the study.
Developed in collaboration between Inserm and University of Montreal, this software allows one to geocode the multiple activity places of participants and to draw the boundaries of their residential neighborhood as they perceive it.
On the one hand, the published article describes in details the different tools available in the VERITAS software. On the other hand, in an attempt to contribute to a “contextual expology” (as a subdiscipline interested in the places and times of environmental exposures), it examines the indicators that can be constructed based on the data collected.
A first series of indicators is related to the spatial behavior of participants, i.e., to their individual patterns of mobility in space and time. A second series of indicators aims to assess the environmental exposures that people face in their daily mobility (in their different activity places).
To address the concerns of a literature mainly focused on residential environments, the objective of the work is to take into account daily mobility in the study of the effects of the environment on health.
The seventh information letter of the RECORD Study has been sent to the participants of the study.
In a first article, the information letter summarizes the last developments in our efforts to take into account daily mobility phenomena in environment – health studies. The article reports descriptive data on the mobility of participants as assessed with our VERITAS survey of regular destinations. It also provides information on the recent advances related to the integration of GPS technologies and accelerometry in the RECORD Study.
A second article is devoted to the issue of healthcare utilization. This work examines socio-territorial disparities in spatial access to different healthcare services and investigates individual and contextual determinants of healthcare utilization of participants with dyslipidemia.
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Urbanization and socioeconomic profiles of neighborhoods related to blood pressure (Journal of Hypertension)
This work conducted in collaboration between the University of Montreal and Inserm provides new information on the relationships between residential neighborhoods and blood pressure.
A previous work based on the RECORD Study had shown that socioeconomic position of the residential neighborhood, especially neighborhood educational level, was associated with the systolic blood pressure of participants.
In this new analysis, Andrea van Hulst from University of Montreal considered a large number of characteristics related to the physical environment, to the service environment, and to the social environment to construct a typology of neighborhoods. Such a classification allowed us to divide the RECORD Study territory into 6 categories of neighborhoods with differing patterns of urbanization, socioeconomic level, and social interactions.
Analyses showed that systolic blood pressure was higher among participants living in socially disadvantaged urban neighborhoods. This relationship persisted after accounting for the socioeconomic characteristics of participants and of their residential neighborhood and for different risk factors of hypertension.
Moreover, a negative relationship was documented between the degree of urbanization of the residential neighborhood and diastolic blood pressure, with a higher blood pressure in the least urbanized neighborhoods.
These new findings provide additional insight on the socio-territorial profile of hypertension.
In an article published in Preventive Medicine, Noëlla Karusisi sought to identify the characteristics of residential environments associated with the practice of jogging.
The objective of the study was to identify the characteristics of geographic environments that intervene as environmental barriers to a regular physical activity and could lead to the failure of traditional health education and promotion programs in certain neighborhoods.
The analyses showed that different factors of the physical environment and social interactional environment were associated with the practice of jogging and with the location of jogging (inside or outside the neighborhood).
The presence and the quality of green and open spaces, the presence of monuments and enjoyable sites, and a high degree of social cohesion in the neighborhood increased the probability of jogging over the previous 7 days.
Moreover, the presence and quality of green and open spaces, the objective surface of green spaces, and the presence of a lake or waterway in the neighborhood increased the likelihood to jog inside rather than outside one’s residential neighborhood.
This study suggests that all geographic environments do not support the practice of a regular physical activity in a similar way.
A recently published article in PLoS One examined whether the supermarket where people do most of their food shopping is associated with body weight and fat.
The study showed that the 7131 participants were shopping in 1097 different supermarkets. Almost 90% of the participants were shopping out of their immediate residential neighborhood.
The study suggests that two persons who were shopping in the same supermarket had a more similar body mass index and waist circumference than participants who were shopping in different supermarkets.
The analyses showed that shopping in specific supermarket brands, especially in specific hypermarkets and specific hard discount supermarkets, and in supermarkets attracting low educated customers was associated with a higher body mass index and a larger waist circumference.
The study also demonstrates that shopping in a hard discount supermarket was not associated with body weight and fat among participants with a high educational level, but that shopping in a hard discount was related to a higher body mass index and larger waist circumference with decreasing educational level of the participants.
These findings do not allow one to conclude to a causal effect of the primary supermarket used for food shopping. However, they suggest that supermarkets represent a relevant place to develop nutritional interventions. The study could be used to identify the supermarkets where such nutritional interventions would be most beneficial.
The sixth information letter of the RECORD Study has been sent to the participants of the study.
This letter describes the RECORD GPS Study that we currently implement, in which participants are invited to wear a GPS and an accelerometer for 7 days.
The letter also reports two articles related to our recent work. The first article is devoted to recreational walking, while the second is interested in the practice of jogging. Both analyses investigate relationships between multiple characteristics of residential environments, experiences made by individuals in their neighborhood, weather over the previous days, and physical activity behavior over the same period.
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In this article, Cinira Lefèvre examined whether different characteristics of the physical environment, service environment, and social-interactional environment were associated with the body mass index and waist circumference of the RECORD participants
The analyses suggest that, beyond socioeconomic characteristics of individuals and of their residential neighborhood, waist circumference was larger among participants residing in a neighborhood with a low building density, and where the densities of fruit and vegetable shops and restaurants (full service and fastfoods) and density of destinations were weak. Overall, the likelihood of excess fat was higher in non-dense neighborhoods.
However, analyses based on innovative approaches revealed that it is difficult to disentangle the effects of the different characteristics of the physical and service environment on excess body weight and fat, especially when these environmental factors are related to densities that are highly correlated with each others.
We therefore found it more reliable to only conclude to the existence of an overall protective effect of high densities in general.
The article can be downloaded here.