Send to

Choose Destination
Am Psychol. 1989 Apr;44(4):675-83.

Motivational factors in health and disease.


Evidence is reviewed that measures of motive strength, as measured through content analysis of associative thought, are related to physiological systems, the functioning of which affect health outcomes. Studies show that affiliative and power motive syndromes assessed in associative thought are associated with health and illness. A relaxed or easygoing affiliative motive syndrome characterizes insulin dependent Type I diabetics and can, if aroused, lead to poorer blood sugar control in such diabetics. A stressed power motive syndrome is associated with sympathetic activation, release of stress hormones, depressed immune functions, and greater susceptibility to infectious diseases. Affiliative trust and a greater sense of agency as measured in associative thought content are associated with better health. An intervention study and a longitudinal study have demonstrated that differences in the levels of these motivational variables are not simply the result of illness but lead to alterations in subsequent health status.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for American Psychological Association
Loading ...
Support Center