Sex, educational attainment, and baseline information of BMI, and smoking status were considered as covariates in the survival analyses. BMI was assessed through physical examination and other covariates were acquired through self-reported questionnaire data. Educational attainment was classified as primary education, lower secondary or vocational, upper secondary education, and tertiary education. BMI was derived as the body mass divided by the square of body height, expressed in units of kg/m2. Smoking status was categorized as non-smokers, ex-smokers, and current smokers. Among the included individuals and measurements, 28 out of 846 individuals without education information were assigned into an unknown group, and another one and two individuals who missed the BMI and smoking status were imputed with the corresponding information collected from their nearest available IPTs.

Since the participants in the present analysis were born over a long period of time (1900 to 1948), we estimated the mortality associations with stratification on the calendar year of the participants’ birthday to avoid confounding from cohort effects. Individuals’ birth year was treated as a categorical variable with five groups in an interval of 10 years.

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