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Alcohol Consumption, Medical Conditions, and Health Behavior in Older Adults

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Objectives : To examine associations between drinking patterns, medical conditions, and behavioral health risks among older adults.

Methods : Analyses compared survey participants (health plan members ages 65 to 90, N = 6662) who drank moderately to those who drank over recommended limits or did not drink.

Results : Overlimit drinking was associated with smoking; not trying to eat low-fat foods (in men), and lower BMI (in women). Predictors of not drinking during the prior 12 months included ethnicity, lower education, worse self-reported health, diabetes and heart problems.

Conclusions : Significant relationships exist between health and alcohol consumption patterns, which vary by gender.

Keywords: alcohol; behavioral health risks; ethnicity; gender; obesity; older adults

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: May 1, 2007

More about this publication?
  • The American Journal of Health Behavior seeks to improve the quality of life through multidisciplinary health efforts in fostering a better understanding of the multidimensional nature of both individuals and social systems as they relate to health behaviors.

    The Journal aims to provide a comprehensive understanding of the impact of personal attributes, personality characteristics, behavior patterns, social structure, and processes on health maintenance, health restoration, and health improvement; to disseminate knowledge of holistic, multidisciplinary approaches to designing and implementing effective health programs; and to showcase health behavior analysis skills that have been proven to affect health improvement and recovery.

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