Navigation Links
Research: How you think about your age may affect how you age
Date:3/2/2010

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - The saying "You're only as old as you feel" really seems to resonate with older adults, according to research from Purdue University.

"How old you are matters, but beyond that it's your interpretation that has far-reaching implications for the process of aging," said Markus H. Schafer, a doctoral student in sociology and gerontology who led the study. "So, if you feel old beyond your own chronological years you are probably going to experience a lot of the downsides that we associate with aging.

"But if you are older and maintain a sense of being younger, then that gives you an edge in maintaining a lot of the abilities you prize."

Schafer and co-author Tetyana P. Shippee, a Purdue graduate who is a research associate at Purdue's Center on Aging and the Life Course, compared people's chronological age and their subjective age to determine which one has a greater influence on cognitive abilities during older adulthood. Nearly 500 people ages 55-74 were surveyed about aging in 1995 and 2005 as part of the National Survey of Midlife Development in the United States.

In 1995, when people were asked what age do you feel most of the time, the majority identified with being 12 years younger than they actually were.

"We found that these people who felt young for their age were more likely to have greater confidence about their cognitive abilities a decade later," Schafer said. "Yes, chronological age was important, but the subjective age had a stronger effect.

"What we are not sure about is what comes first. Does a person's wellness and happiness affect their cognitive abilities or does a person's cognitive ability contribute to their sense of wellness. We are planning to address this in a future study."

Schafer also said that the current study's findings have both positive and negative implications.

"There is a tremendous emphasis on being youthful in our society and that can have a negative effect for people," Schafer said. "People want to feel younger, and so when they do inevitably age they can lose a lot of confidence in their cognitive abilities.

"But on the other hand, because there is such a desire in America to stay young, there may be benefits of trying to maintain a sense of youthfulness by keeping up with new trends and activities that feel invigorating. Learning new technologies is one way people can continue to improve their cognitive abilities. It will be interesting to see how, or if, these cultural norms shift as the Baby Boomer generation ages."

Other studies have shown that women are prone to aging stereotypes, so Schafer expected to see that women who felt older about themselves would have less confidence in their cognitive abilities.

"There is a slight difference between men and women, but it's not as pronounced as we expected," Schafer said. "This was surprising because of the emphasis on physical attractiveness and youth that is often disproportionately placed on women."

Schafer also is studying how stressful events, such as family members' health issues, affect aging, as well as how happiness and aging relate.


'/>"/>

Contact: Amy Patterson Neubert
apatterson@purdue.edu
765-494-9723
Purdue University
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Research: People With Type 2 Diabetes Improved Muscular Strength and Exercise Capacity Through Physical Therapist Exercise Counseling Combined With Fitness Center Exercise Training
2. Translational Research: From Bench to Bedside Capitol Hill Breakfast Briefing Hosted by the Council for American Medical Innovation
3. New research: Consumption of sugar substitutes assists in long-term weight control
4. Texas on Top of Cancer Research: Dallas Regional Chamber Hosts Forum on New $3 Billion Fund
5. Conning Research: Health Insurance Industry Premium Growth and Profitability Under Pressure Through 2011
6. Research: Improving treatment of patients with heart attack
7. Manhattan Research: Physician New Media Adoption in Emerging Pharma Markets - Webcast April 3
8. Radiological Society of North America research: Cancer risk from cardiac CT overstated
9. New Research: Americans Underestimate Dangers of Sudden Cardiac Arrest
10. Conning Research: Long Term Care Insurance Industry Continues to Search for Broader Market
11. New EBRI/Commonwealth Fund Research: Enrollment in Consumer-Driven Plans Remains Low, Survey Shows
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:3/23/2017)... Grimsby, Ontario (PRWEB) , ... March 23, 2017 , ... The MBI “Hall of Fame” ... or whose acts have had a significant impact on the careers of all others involved. ... with NRB Inc. was inducted into the MBI’s Hall of Fame. The induction took ...
(Date:3/23/2017)... ... March 23, 2017 , ... ... serving the families and businesses of the Norwalk and Vermillion areas, celebrates ... Recovery Center (N.O.R.A.) is a nonprofit, community-based substance abuse prevention and peer ...
(Date:3/23/2017)... ... 2017 , ... Benefits delivery trailblazer, Hodges-Mace, LLC, ... benefits dashboard solving one of the top frustrations in employee benefits – how ... time, employees can access up-to-date information and account balances for all of their ...
(Date:3/23/2017)... Angeles, CA (PRWEB) , ... March 23, 2017 ... ... A funding investment in Los Angeles based healthcare technology company California Healthcom Group ... portfolio into the US, and healthcare arena. With headquarters in California, CHG is ...
(Date:3/23/2017)... ... 23, 2017 , ... The TouchPoint Solution, home of Buzzies *, is ... anxiety. , “Buzzies change the way we interact with stress and live our ... its launch date in December 2016, The TouchPoint Solution has sold more than $750,000 ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:3/23/2017)... , March 23, 2017  The U.S. Food ... (avelumab) for the treatment of adults and pediatric patients ... (MCC), including those who have not received prior chemotherapy. ... a rare, aggressive form of skin cancer. ... cancers, patients with a rare form called Merkel cell ...
(Date:3/23/2017)... VANCOUVER, British Columbia , March 23, 2017 /PRNewswire/ ... "Company" or "Sophiris"), a clinical late-stage biopharmaceutical company developing ... announced that data from its successful Phase 2a study ... treatment for localized prostate cancer, will be presented as ... nd Annual European Association of Urology in ...
(Date:3/23/2017)... Research and Markets has announced the addition of the ... offering. ... global oxygen therapy devices market to grow at a CAGR of ... Oxygen Therapy Devices Market 2017-2021, has been prepared based on an ... the market landscape and its growth prospects over the coming years. ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: