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Health Care Women Int. 2010 Dec;31(12):1082-96. doi: 10.1080/07399332.2010.486096.

A longitudinal study of the relationship between lifestyle and mental health among midlife and older women in Australia: findings from the Healthy Aging of Women Study.

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  • 1Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation, Queensland University of Technology, Kelvin Grove, Brisbane, Australia.


We investigated the temporal relationship between lifestyle and mental health among 564 midlife women. The mental health measured included anxiety, depression, and mental well-being; the lifestyle measures included body mass index (BMI), exercise, smoking, alcohol use, and caffeine consumption. We found that BMI was positively related with mental well-being (r = .316, p = .009); smokers had lower mental well-being than nonsmokers (β = 6.725, p = .006), and noncaffeine drinkers had higher mental well-being (β = 5, p = .023). Past alcohol-drinkers had less anxiety than nondrinkers (β = 1.135, p = .04). Therefore, lifestyle is predictive of mental health among midlife and older women.

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