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Health Directly Influenced By Attitude To Aging

Update Date: Jan 31, 2016 02:09 PM EST

It is not easy to become older, as people are likely to get affected by a range of health-related issues. But a study shows that our attitude on aging can affect our health too.

A study from the Irish Longitudinal Study on Ageing (TILDA),.ie at Trinity College Dublin, showed that persons with an overall positive attitude toward ageing can exhibit better cognitive abilities.

"The way we think about, talk about and write about ageing may have direct effects on health," said lead study author Dr. Deidre Robertson, in a news release. "Everyone will grow older and if negative attitudes towards ageing are carried throughout life they can have a detrimental, measurable effect on mental, physical and cognitive health."

Hence, adults with a more negative attitude to ageing tend to walk slowly, with their cognitive abilities weakening two years later when compared to others with a more positive attitude, irrespective of medicines, mood and health changes in two years.

"Researchers and policy makers can work together to develop and implement societal-wide interventions to target attitudes and perhaps, ultimately, find novel ways of maintaining health in later life," said principal investigator of TILDA, Rose Anne Kenny.

The study is published in the journal Personality and Individual Differences.

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