Health, Zoomer Report

Only As Old As You Feel

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You know the old saying: “You’re only as old as you feel.” Well apparently it’s true.

Researchers report that people who feel older than their actual age are more likely to be hospitalized.

Previous work has shown that feeling older than your years can affect your health and well-being. Now The American Psychological Association says it can predict your likelihood of ending up in the hospital.

The research team reviewed data from three previous studies that included more than 10,000 adults between the ages of 24 and 102. Participants were asked how old they felt when the study began and if they had been previously diagnosed with health issues like cardiovascular disease, diabetes, cancer, or arthritis.

After taking factors like gender and education into account, the researchers found that people who said they felt older than their actual age were 10 to 25 percent more likely to be admitted to a hospital within two to 10 years after entering the study.

The study authors say that people with an older subjective age are more likely to be sedentary and to experience faster cognitive decline, all of which may result in a hospital stay.

The researchers say How old people say they feel could be a valuable tool in identifying people at risk. And those people could benefit from standard health treatments — like physical activity and exercise programs.

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