Development of an approach for identifying overnutrition among older adults in community health care settings: - an opinion paper

Tenna Christoffersen, Anne Marie Beck, Inge Tetens, Anja Weirsøe Dynesen, Margit Dall Aaslyng


Summary Background Along with demographic changes, a larger number of older adults may encounter health risks related to overweight and obesity. According to the obesity paradox, it is still uncertain whether nutritional interventions aiming at weight loss in older adults has favorable or adverse effects on health. Aims We aim to propose an approach that can be applied in community health care settings for identifying overnutrition among older adults with overweight or obesity in order to find those who may benefit from a nutritional intervention aimed at controlling body weight and maintaining or increasing physical function and quality of life. A second aim is to substantiate the proposed approach with results from the scientific literature on nutritional interventions. Methods The approach was developed in a stepwise, followed by a narrative literature review. Results The approach proposed for risk screening of older adults includes BMI ≥ 25 kg/m2, minimum one physical function criterion (muscle strength or physical performance) or one metabolic criterion (presence of non-communicable disease (NCDs)). Appropriate criteria, assessment tools and cut-off values adapted to older adults in community care settings are proposed for both. A total of 10 intervention studies (13 papers) identified in the narrative literature search supports that nutritional interventions including exercise are effective for older adults with overnutrition (BMI ≥ 25) and concurrently low physical function and/or NCDs. Conclusion An approach was proposed including screening for BMI ≥ 25, functional and NCD criterion. The approach confirmed by a narrative literature review, revealed a high heterogeneity of nutritional intervention studies in overweight and obese adults in community health care settings.
TidsskriftClinical Nutrition Open Science
Sider (fra-til)102-120
Antal sider19
StatusUdgivet - feb. 2023


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