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Healthy ageing trajectories and lifestyle behaviour: the Mexican Health and Aging Study

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Yu-Tzu WuORCiD



This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (CC BY 4.0).


© 2019, The Author(s).Projections show that the number of people above 60 years old will triple by 2050 in Mexico. Nevertheless, ageing is characterised by great variability in the health status. In this study, we aimed to identify trajectories of health and their associations with lifestyle factors in a national representative cohort study of older Mexicans. We used secondary data of 14,143 adults from the Mexican Health and Aging Study (MHAS). A metric of health, based on the conceptual framework of functional ability, was mapped onto four waves (2001, 2003, 2012, 2015) and created by applying Bayesian multilevel Item Response Theory (IRT). Conditional Growth Mixture Modelling (GMM) was used to identify latent classes of individuals with similar trajectories and examine the impact of physical activity, smoking and alcohol on those. Conditional on sociodemographic and lifestyle behaviour four latent classes were suggested: high-stable, moderate-stable, low-stable and decliners. Participants who did not engage in physical activity, were current or previous smokers and did not consume alcohol at baseline were more likely to be in the trajectory with the highest deterioration (i.e. decliners). This study confirms ageing heterogeneity and the positive influence of a healthy lifestyle. These results provide the ground for new policies.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Daskalopoulou C, Koukounari A, Wu Y-T, Terrera GM, Caballero FF, de la Fuente J, Tyrovolas S, Panagiotakos DB, Prince M, Prina M

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Scientific Reports

Year: 2019

Volume: 9

Issue: 1

Online publication date: 30/07/2019

Acceptance date: 12/07/2019

Date deposited: 22/05/2020

ISSN (electronic): 2045-2322

Publisher: Nature Publishing Group


DOI: 10.1038/s41598-019-47238-w

PubMed id: 31363117


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