Trajectories of Maintenance and Resilience in Healthful Eating and Exercise Behaviors in Older Adults

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Objective: Our objective was to describe behavioral change trajectories for healthful eating and exercise in a group of community-dwelling older adults. A secondary aim was to determine predictors of maintenance and resilience. Method: Subjects were participants in the Study of Exercise and Nutrition in Older Rhode Islanders (SENIOR) I study who had achieved postaction stage of change for at least one behavior by its end. They were recruited for SENIOR II, a 48-month study with annual assessments on demographic, anthropometric, cognitive, psychosocial, and behavioral variables. Results: Maintainers generally had higher levels of healthy behaviors and better cognitive function. Resilient older adults were similar to maintainers but were older and had greater functional limitations. Discussion: Findings suggest that both physical health and psychological capital provide important resources upon which to draw as older adults grow even older. The trajectory model can provide useful information for developing resilience interventions for older adults.

Publication Title, e.g., Journal

Journal of Aging and Health