Date of Original Version
Background: Aging often involves health problems and difficulties, such as physical and psychological impairments, isolation, and loneliness, causing social and existential consequences. Studies have explored aging from different perspectives. However, few studies have examined healthy older adults’ genetic backgrounds, lifestyles, and meaning in life separately or in combination. This study aims to describe how healthy older adults experience aging, health, lifestyles, and meaning in life and explore potential genetic correlations.
Methods and Design:The project will comprise three main parts: a quantitative section featuring the development and testing of a lifestyle questionnaire, a quantitative genetic analysis, and a qualitative interview study. Participants will be community-dwelling, healthy, older adults between 70 and 95 years of age. A sample size of 800 older adults will be invited to participate in seminars in collaboration with the national Swedish association Active Seniors. Data will be collected through lifestyle questionnaire, DNA extracted from saliva samples, and interviews. Based on questionnaire responses, profile groups will be created and compared statistically with variations in genetic backgrounds, providing the basis for recruiting participants to the qualitative interviews.
Discussion: This study’s expected outcome will be to gain knowledge about variations in genetic backgrounds correlated with individual experiences regarding aging, health, and meaning in life. This knowledge can improve the understanding of motivations for healthy lifestyle changes. The results can reveal potential implications for individual prerequisites to healthy aging and how health-promoting aging and lifestyle counseling can be adjusted to meet individual needs.
Gillsjö, C., Karlsson, S., Ståhl, F., & Eriksson, I. (2021, 2021/03/01/). Lifestyle's influence on community-dwelling older adults' health: A mixed-methods study design. Contemporary Clinical Trials Communications, 21, 100687. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.conctc.2020.100687
Available at: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.conctc.2020.10068
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