Ageism and health: research shows close links

Summary: Almost all adults between the ages of 50 and 80 experience eigism in their daily lives, but those with health problems are more likely to experience “daily eugenia.”

A source: University of Michigan

Nearly all older people experience some form of selfishness in their daily lives, and new research shows that they may encounter tearful messages and pictures on television or on the Internet. or believing stereotypes about old age.

According to new findings published by a team from the University of Oklahoma, the University of Norman and the University of Michigan, older people who are more concerned about their health may experience some form of “everyday egotism.” Data were obtained from a survey of more than 2,000 people aged 50 to 80 years, from a national survey on healthy aging.

The higher a person’s scores on the daily eugenics experience scale, the more likely they were to be in poor physical or mental health, to have a chronic health condition, or to show signs of depression.

Although the study was published in JAMA Network OpenThe authors note that the link between eugenics and health needs to be further explored and taken into account when developing programs that promote the health and well-being of older people.

“These findings raise the question of whether health problems reflect the negative effects of aging on anti-aging and anti-anti-aging actions may be a strategy to improve the health and well-being of older people,” says first author Julie Ober Allen, Ph.D., MPH, Health and Exercise. Department of Science, University of Oklahoma, Norman.

Allen was interviewed while working as a postdoctoral fellow at the Population Research Center at the U.S. Department of Social Research.

The team published preliminary findings in the NPHA report, which is based at the UM Institute for Health Policy and Innovation and is supported by AARP and Michigan Medicine, UM Academic Medical Center.

However, the new analysis continues, using the Daily Ageism scale developed by the team. This scale, which was approved and published last year, calculates points based on a person’s answers to 10 questions about their experience and beliefs about old age.

In all, 93% of older people surveyed said they had experienced at least one of the 10 types of eugenia on a regular basis. The most common, experienced by almost 80%, was that 83% of respondents described their health as good or very good, but agreed that “health problems are part of old age.” Such “inner” selfishness includes the feeling that loneliness, depression, sadness, or anxiety are part of old age.

At the same time, 65% of older people said that they regularly see, hear or read jokes about older people or messages that are unpleasant or unwelcome to older people.

Another class of youth experiences, which researchers call interpersonal ageism, was reported to be a recurring phenomenon in 45% of respondents. This includes experiences with another person in which an older person thinks they are having difficulty using, seeing, hearing, understanding, remembering, or doing something on their own, or that they are not doing anything valuable.

The researchers calculated the Daily Ageism scores for each of the more than 2,000 respondents based on their answers to all the survey questions.

The overall average score was just over 10. As a group, people between the ages of 65 and 80 scored more than 11 points, indicating that people aged 50-64 were more likely to be selfish.

People with low incomes or education and people living in rural areas also had an average age score. Older people who reported spending four hours or more each day watching television, surfing the Internet, or reading magazines received higher scores than those who did not.

Researchers then looked at what each person said about their personal health, including self-assessed physical and mental health, and reports of chronic health conditions and symptoms of depression.

Ageism can take many forms, including internal stereotypes about what people experience in old age. Credit: University of Michigan

They found a strong link between high scores and all four health-related measures. In other words, those who reported higher Daily Ageism scores reported that their general physical health or general mental health was fair or poor, chronic health conditions, and symptoms of depression.

Much of this connection has to do with the inner workings of geism — questions that measure the extent to which a person agrees that health problems are part of loneliness and sad old age. However, experiences with interpersonal forms of eugenics have also been linked to health-related interventions, as have some aspects of eugenics statements.

There is a link between the daily lives of older people and the practice of healthy eugenics, especially the director and senior author of the survey, Preeti Malani, MD, a professor of Michigan Medicine, has experience caring for the elderly.

“Respondents in our survey said that they experience the most types of youthful emotions, as well as whether they are in good or poor physical or mental health, or have a chronic illness such as diabetes or heart disease. We need to check again, ”he said.

Learn more about the National Healthy Aging Survey at and sign up to publish new reports.

New research-based information is available at

Additional authors: Erica Solway, PhD, MSW, MPH; Matthias Kirch, MS; Diane Singer, MPH; Jeffrey T. Kullgren, MD, MS, MPH; Valerie Moiz, MS

Funding: The study was partially funded by a grant from the National Institute on Aging (AG000221) to Allen, a postdoctoral fellow at the UM Population Research Center. The Open Access Foundation of the University of Oklahoma also provided support.

This is the message of a health and aging study

Author: Black Gavin
A source: University of Michigan
The connection: Black Gavin is from the University of Michigan
Photo: Photo courtesy of the University of Michigan

Original study: Open access.
Julie Ober Allen JAMA Network Open


Experiences of Daily Ageism and the Health of the Elderly in the United States

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See also

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The main events of Ajism are related to the deterioration of the health and well-being of the elderly. Older people are less aware of the common types of discrimination, prejudices, and stereotypes that are common in older people’s daily lives.

The goal

To study the prevalence of daily eugenics, group differences and disproportions, as well as the relationship of daily eugenia with poor physical and mental health.

Design, installation and participants

This cross-sectional study was conducted in December 2019 using data from the National Survey on Healthy Aging among households of the U.S. National Office of Adults aged 50 to 80 years. The data were analyzed from November 2021 to April 2022.


Experiences of Daily Ageism were measured using a newly developed multidimensional Daily Ageism scale.

Key results and measures

Fair or poor physical health, number of chronic health conditions, fair or poor mental health and depressive symptoms.


Among 2,035 adults between the ages of 50 and 80 (1,047 [54.2%] women; 192 See [10.9%]178 Spanish [11.4%]and 1546 White [71.1%]; means [SD] age, 62.6 [8.0] a year [weighted statistics]), most participants (1915 adults [93.4%]) reported experiencing 1 or more types of daily egoism on a regular basis. Internal eugenia was reported by 1,664 adults (81.2%), 1,394 adults (65.2%), and interpersonal eugenia by 941 adults (44.9%). Average scores on the daily youth scale were higher for several socio-demographic groups, including those aged 50 to 64 years than adults aged 65 to 80 years (11.23 [95% CI, 10.80-11.66] vs 9.55 [95% CI, 9.26-9.84]) and White (10.43 [95% CI, 10.20-10.67]; P <.001) and Spanish (10.09 [95% CI, 9.31-10.86]; P = .04) adults vs Black adults (9.23 [95% CI, 8.42-10.03]).

High levels of daily eugenia were associated with an increased risk of all 4 negative physical and mental health outcomes tested (with concentrations). [ORs] Additional scale item up to 1.20 [95% CI, 1.17-1.23] and for symptoms of depression In = 0.039 [95% CI, 0.029-0.048] for chronic health conditions; Pvalues ​​<.001). Internal geism was the category associated with the greatest increase in the risk of adverse outcomes for all health interventions (ORs on the additional scale were as high as 1.62). [95% CI, 1.49-1.76] and for symptoms of depression In= 0.063 [95% CI, 0.034-0.092] for chronic health conditions; Pvalues ​​<.001).

Conclusions and relevance

The study found that daily eugenics is more common in the United States among adults between the ages of 50 and 80. These findings suggest that normal age-related messages, interactions, and beliefs may be detrimental to health, and that multi-level and multi-sectoral efforts may be required to reduce daily ageism and promote positive beliefs, practices, and policies toward older people and older people. shows.

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