Background: Physical inactivity and sedentary behaviour (too much sitting) can contribute to renal dysfunction. However, the potential benefits of behavioural change (e.g. replacing sedentary behaviour with physical activity) on renal function are not well understood. We used isotemporal substitution to model potential impacts of behaviours on renal function by replacing time spent in one behaviour to another. Methods: In 174 older Japanese adults (age, 50-83 years; females, 76%), the time spent in sedentary behaviour, light-intensity physical activity (LPA), and moderate- to vigorous-intensity physical activity (MVPA) were assessed using an uniaxial accelerometer. Renal function was evaluated by the estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) from serum creatinine and cystatin C levels. Results: In univariate analyses, eGFR was significantly, albeit weakly, correlated with time spent in sedentary behaviour (r s = - 0.229), LPA (r s = 0.265), and MVPA (r s = 0.353). In the isotemporal substitution models, replacement of 30 min/day of sedentary behaviour with an equivalent LPA time was not significantly associated with eGFR (β = 2.26, p = 0.112); however, replacement with an equivalent time of MVPA was beneficially associated with eGFR (β = 5.49, p < 0.05). Conclusions: These cross-sectional findings suggest that sedentary behaviour (detrimentally) and physical activity (beneficially) may affect renal function and that replacing sedentary behaviour with MVPA may benefit renal health in older adults.
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