Background: With the aging population, the prevalence of age-related hearing loss will increase substantially. Prevention requires more knowledge on modifiable risk factors. Obesity and diet quality have been suggested to play a role in the etiology of age-related hearing loss. We aimed to investigate independent associations of body composition and diet quality with age-related hearing loss. Methods: We performed cross-sectional and longitudinal analyses (follow-up: 4.4 years) in the populationbased Rotterdam Study. At baseline (2006-2014), 2,906 participants underwent assessment of body composition, diet, and hearing. Of these 2,906 participants, 636 had hearing assessment at follow-up (2014- 2016). Association of body composition and of diet quality with hearing loss were examined using multivariable linear regression models. Results: Cross-sectionally, higher body mass index and fat mass index were associated with increased hearing thresholds. These associations did not remain statistically significant at follow-up. We found no associations between overall diet quality and hearing thresholds. Conclusions: This study shows that a higher body mass index, and in particular a higher fat mass index, is related to age-related hearing loss. However, whether maintaining a healthy body composition may actually reduce the effects of age-related hearing loss in the aging population requires further longitudinal populationbased research.

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Journal Aging
Croll, P.H., Voortman, R.G, Vernooij, M.W, Baatenburg de Jong, R.J, Lin, F.R., Rivadeneira Ramirez, F, … Goedegebure, A. (2019). The association between obesity, diet quality and hearing loss in older adults. Aging, 11(1), 48–62. doi:10.18632/aging.101717