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Category: Aging & Wellness

Mind over Matter: Self-Control Keeps Social Activity High in Older Adults with Functional Limitations

For many older adults, functional limitations such as limited mobility or even a moratorium of driving have been shown to lead to decreased social activity. However, not everyone reacts to decreased functional abilities in the same way. One important factor in how older adults react to limitations is their sense of self-control, or their perceived ability to produce desired outcomes. A...

Neighborhood Watch: Older Adults’ Neighborhood, Household Environment Impact Cognition

A number of studies have associated the impact of physical environment on health outcomes, but one area that has received little attention is how characteristics of place can potentially impact cognition. A recent study looked at neighborhood characteristics, home characteristics, and older adults’ perceptions of these environments in relation to cognitive tests. To document...

Exercise Classes Work Out for Older Adults in Surprising Ways

A recent study of four different exercise classes showed that physical fitness isn’t the only benefit that such courses can provide. Participant surveys and brain scans showed significant psychosocial impacts. Although social benefits may not be the main motivation for engaging in exercise classes, a recent study of four different exercise classes showed that physical fitness isn’t...

Failed Taste Test: How Our Ability to Identify Flavor Declines with Age

A recent study investigated changes in how we taste flavors as we age. The authors found that not only do older adults find flavors less pleasant than younger adults, they also have more difficulty identifying specific flavors. For this study, individuals age 16 to 85 rated two different flavored drinks on pleasantness, sweetness, strength of flavor, and familiarity with the flavor. To...

Empowering Residents to Educate

Recently, a collaboration between a university and a Life Plan Community has created a unique educational program that builds on the life experience and knowledge of older adults to educate undergraduates on aging, in a course that provides both groups intergenerational contact, combats stereotypes about aging and hopefully attracts more people to the fields of geronotology and aging...

Rich Man, Poor Man: How Does a Positive Attitude toward Aging Affect Different Economic Groups?

Previous research on aging has shown that positive attitudes toward aging can have multiple benefits for health and well-being, but it has not been clear whether these benefits extend to older adults in precarious economic situations. Having a low income and little security for retirement has been associated with poorer health outcomes as individuals age. A recent study looked more...

When Volunteers Vamoose: Why Older Adults Stop Volunteering

Volunteering by older adults not only provides important societal benefits, but has also been shown to have positive impacts on the health of those who volunteer. (For example, see  here.) In light of the numerous benefits of volunteering and an ongoing need for volunteers, it is important to look at why individuals cease volunteering. A recent study measured a number of aspects of...

Setting the Record Straight: Debunking Harmful Myths about Aging

Ageism, inaccurate media portrayals, and lack of adequate education on aging all combine to produce a number of misconceptions about aging. In light of the negative impacts that such misconceptions can have, it is increasingly important to take steps to dispel these misconceptions. In order to combat such misconceptions, the AARP has launched the #DisruptAging public education...

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