Cultural differences in the association between subjective age and health: Evidence from the Israeli component of the Survey of Health, Ageing and Retirement in Europe (SHARE-Israel)

Yoav S. Bergman, Amit Shrira

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations

Abstract

Research has demonstrated that holding a young subjective age (i.e. feeling younger than one's chronological age) has been associated with various positive aspects of physical and psychological health. However, little is known about how such associations differ between cultural sub-groups within a given society. Accordingly, the current study focused on the Israeli component of the Survey of Health, Ageing and Retirement in Europe (SHARE-Israel) and aimed to explore the moderating role of culture on the association between subjective age and objective physical health, subjective physical health and psychological health. Data were collected from 1,793 respondents, who were classified into three groups: veteran Israeli Jews, immigrants from the former Soviet Union and Israeli Arab citizens. Age ranged from 50 to 105 (mean = 69.65, standard deviation = 9.49). All participants rated their subjective age and filled out scales examining six dimensions covering psychological health, as well as objective and subjective physical health. Across all examined dimensions, an older subjective age was associated with unfavourable health outcomes. For the majority of health dimensions, the subjective age-health links were most prominent among Israeli Arabs. Results are discussed from both a general societal standpoint (i.e. group differences in access to health services), as well as from the individual's specific role in his or her culture and society.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)32-47
Number of pages16
JournalAgeing and Society
Volume42
Issue number1
Early online date18 Jun 2020
DOIs
StatePublished - 18 Jan 2022

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
Copyright © The Author(s), 2020. Published by Cambridge University Press.

Keywords

  • SHARE-Israel
  • cross-cultural differences
  • physical health
  • psychological health
  • subjective age

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