Gabriel Leung, MD, MPH
Physician, Department of Community Medicine
The University of Hong Kong

Gluttony, Sloth and Death - a Paradox Explained

Monday, October 9
5:00 - 6:00 PM
Colonial Penn Center (3641 Locust Walk)


co sponsored with The John A. Hartford Center of Geriatric Nursing Excellence (HCGNE)

Gabriel Leung is Associate Professor in Translational Public Health at the University of Hong Kong and holds an adjunct appointment at the University of Pennsylvania.

Leung's research focuses on synthesizing best, current evidence for high-impact public health priorities in Hong Kong and other East Asian populations, particularly Greater China and the Asian Tigers. He has published widely on chronic disease and cancer epidemiology, infectious disease epidemiology, pediatric and lifecourse epidemiology, evidence-based medicine, and health services and policy research.

There have been recent controversial suggestions in the scientific and lay media that "some extra heft may be helpful". Particularly in older people, it is unclear whether obesity relates to mortality, which calls into question its etiologic role in disease, the significance of obesity in deaths attributable to lifestyle habits, and the appropriate public health interventions for the rapidly growing older population worldwide. This apparent lack of relationship in older people could be an artifactual result of their diverse health states. Using data from the Hong Kong Elderly Cohort, I will show that the effect of body mass index on mortality varied with baseline health status such that in the healthiest group, where obese people had higher mortality but in the unhealthiest group they had lower mortality compared with subjects of normal weight. Independently, physical activity was associated with lower mortality compared with inactivity in the unhealthiest group but not in the healthiest group.

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