Health Lifestyle Clustering in Older Australians and the Association With Physical, Psychological and Sociodemographic Factors
1Macquarie University, Department of Psychology, Sydney, Australia
2Westmead Hospital, Westmead Breast Cancer Institute, Sydney, Australia
Background. Increasing life expectancies, burgeoning healthcare costs, and an emphasis on the management of multiple health-risk behaviours points to a need to identify health-related lifestyles in older adults. The aim of this study was to delineate health lifestyles of older adults, and to examine the association of these lifestyles with biological and psychological states, and socioeconomic indices. Methods. Cluster Analysis was applied to data derived from the 45 and Up cohort study of Australians over 45 years. Participants (N=96,276) completed measures of exercise, smoking, alcohol consumption, diet, cancer screening, and physical functioning, quality of life and psychological distress. Findings. Six lifestyle clusters emerged characterised by smoking, screening and physical activity levels. Individuals within health-risk dominant clusters were more likely to be male, living alone, low income earners, living in a deprived neighbourhood, psychologically distressed and experiencing low quality of life. Discussion. Health lifestyle cluster membership can be used to identify older adults at greatest risk for physical and psychological health morbidity.