- Modifiable factors may mitigate risks for asthma and allergic conditions in young children.
- Prospective intervention studies needed.
Why this matters
- Asthma prevalence is rising fastest in countries undergoing “westernization.”
- Few data exist on how multiple lifestyle factors correlate with asthma risk.
- Authors developed Healthy Lifestyle Index (HLI) comprising 5 dichotomized factors: no parental smoking, child’s adherence to Mediterranean diet, child’s healthy BMI, high physical activity, and nonsedentary behavior.
- Current wheeze, aOR, vs children with 0 or 1 healthy lifestyle factor:
- 2 factors: 0.93 (95% CI, 0.87-1.01).
- 3: 0.77 (95% CI, 0.71-0.83).
- 4 or 5: 0.66 (95% CI, 0.60-0.72).
- Significant trends also for asthma ever, current rhinoconjunctivitis symptoms, current eczema symptoms.
- Nonsignificant associations with eczema ever, hay fever ever.
- Risk reductions most prominent in Western Europe, Latin America, and wealthier countries.
- 16%-20% of preventable cases of asthma (ever or current symptoms, respectively) were attributable to adherence to 4-5 lifestyle factors.
- Multinational cross-sectional questionnaire study of children aged 6-7 years (n=70,795).
- Authors assessed associations between HLI and risks for asthma, rhinoconjunctivitis, eczema.
- Funding: None disclosed.
- Causation not established.
- Risks for underreporting, recall, reporting bias.