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J Health Psychol. 2017 May 1:1359105317708251. doi: 10.1177/1359105317708251. [Epub ahead of print]

A purposeful lifestyle is a healthful lifestyle: Linking sense of purpose to self-rated health through multiple health behaviors.

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1 Washington University in St. Louis, USA.
2 Oregon Research Institute, USA.


Having a purpose in life has been consistently linked to subjective and objective health markers. Using data from the Hawaii Study of Personality and Health ( n = 749, Mage = 60.1 years), we tested multiple health behaviors as unique mediators of the correlation between sense of purpose and self-rated health ( r = .29). Correlational analyses found that participants' sense of purpose was positively associated with their reports of vigorous and moderate activity, vegetable intake, flossing, and sleep quality. Combined in a multiple-mediator model, bootstrapping analyses suggested that sleep quality and vigorous activity proved significant unique mediators.


health behavior; multiple mediation; physical activity; purpose in life; self-reported health

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