Journal List > Korean J Community Nutr > v.19(2) > 1038455

Korean J Community Nutr. 2014 Apr;19(2):142-162. Korean.
Published online April 30, 2014.
Copyright © 2014 The Korean Society of Community Nutrition
Investigation on Influencing Environmental Factors on Health Status of Korean Septuagenarians Dwelling in Longevity Region in Jeonla Province
Chung Shil Kwak,1 Miyong Yon,2 Mee Sook Lee,3 Se In Oh,4 and Sang Chul Park1
1Institute on Aging, Seoul National University, Seoul, Korea.
2Nutrition Policy Team, Department of Health Industry & Policy, Korea Heallth Industry Development Institute, Chungwon, Korea.
3Department of Food and Nutrition, Hannam University, Daejeon, Korea.
4Department of Food and Nutrition, Seoil University, Seoul, Korea.

Corresponding author: Chung Shil Kwak. Institute on Aging, Seoul National University, 199-1 Dongsoong-dong, Jongno-gu, Seoul 110-810, Korea. Tel: (02) 740-8506, Fax: (02) 742-0626, Email:
Received December 27, 2013; Revised March 14, 2014; Accepted March 14, 2014.

This is an Open-Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License ( which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.



To evaluate the critical environmental factors on healthy-aging of Korean people, we investigated the significant factors influencing health status of septuagenarians living in rural area of Jeonla province, known to be one of the representative longevity regions in Korea.


We divided subjects into healthy group (36M/25F) or poor-health group (26M/73F) based on self-reported health status, body mass index, a number of prescription, and blood test data. General characteristics, physical measurements, lifestyle, dietary behavior and nutrient intake, physical health and mental health data were statistically compared between the two groups.


Average age was not different between healthy group and poor-health group in men and women, respectively. In men, significantly favorable factors to health were observed to be higher education, regular exercise, higher grip strength and walking function, body mass index (≥ 18.5 kg/m2), moderate frequency of drinking and eating-out, non-smoking, normal red blood cell (RBC) count, higher serum dehydroepiandrosterone-sulfate (DHEAS) level, good digestive function and appetite, normal hearing function, regular meals, adequate vegetable and fruit intake, diverse food intake, adequate energy and nutrients (protein, vitamin B1, B6, C and E, folate, niacin, P, Zn and K) intake, higher mini-nutrient status assessment (MNA) score and low level of depression. On the other hand, in women, those were literacy, living arrangement, moderate frequency of drinking, healthy teeth, higher grip strength and walking function, bone mineral density, normal RBC and white blood cell (WBC) count, higher DHEAS concentration, higher MNA score, normal cognition and memory function, having snack and adequate fruit intake.


These results could be useful to plan effective strategies to increase health-life expectancy of Korean old people living in rural areas.

Keywords: older adults; rural area; healthy-aging; health-life expectancy


Fig. 1
Flow chart of selection process of healthy or poor-health persons.
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Table 1
Distribution of the initial volunteers in health status parameters
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Table 2
General characteristics of the subjects
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Table 3
Blood test and self-reported disease prevalence
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Table 4
Life style and aging-associated basic functions
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Table 5
Physical measurement, muscle strength and bone mineral density
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Table 6
Dietary behavior
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Table 7
Average daily food intake, meal balance and diversity
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Table 8
Average daily nutrient intakes
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Table 9
Proportions of daily energy and nutrient intakes to Korean dietary recommendation, mean adequacy ratio (MAR) and index of nutrient quality (INQ) of diet
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Table 10
Mini-nutrient status assessment, depression and cognitive function
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This work was supported by Ministry of Health and Welfare and Soonchang County in 2009 through Institute on Aging at Seoul National University

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