Fit and Well at Eighty: Defying the Stereotypes of Age and Illness
Author: BYLES, JULIE E.
Source: Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences, Volume 1114, Number 1, October 2007 , pp. 107-120(14)
Abstract:: While aging is associated with physical decline and increased risk of illness, older age is not inevitably a time of ill-being. Data from the Australian Longitudinal Study on Women's Health challenge negative stereotypes of aging and illness. While an accelerating decline in average physical health was observed over the first 6 years of the study, an important and large proportion of the women experienced minimal change in their physical health during this period. Also, while chronic disease was a strong risk factor for declining health, many women aged well in spite of longstanding medical conditions. This paper presents trends in health and illness as women age and explores some of the many physical, social, and healthcare factors that mark out those women who remain “fit and well.”
Document Type: Research article
Publication date: 2007-10-01