Comparison of Healthy Aging Between Asian, American and European Countries: Results From the Athlos Consortium


Research efforts to measure healthy aging have been diverse and limited to specific populations. This diversity limits the potential to compare healthy aging across populations. The Ageing Trajectories of Health - Longitudinal Opportunities and Synergies (ATHLOS) project has produced a worldwide harmonized dataset from 17 international cohorts and developed a universal scale measuring healthy aging from intrinsic capacity and functional ability items. We aimed to compare healthy aging scores between Asian, American and European countries and analyze which health determinants associate differently. The sample size was 234,446 individuals: 70,077 from China, India, Japan and Korea, 37,314 from the United States, and 127,055 from 21 European countries. Means of healthy aging scores by country were calculated after removing the potential effects of sex, age and year of birth, and compared with the indicators Healthy Life Expectancy (HALE) at birth and Gross Domestic Product (GPD) per capita. Multiple linear regressions were used to analyze the association between healthy aging scores and socio-demographic, life and health factors. Switzerland and Japan had the highest scores, and India the lowest score. Correlations with HALE and GPD were 0.8 and 0.6, respectively. Wealth differences in Japan had the lowest effect on healthy aging scores; chronic diseases and depression in Asian countries had the lowest effects; loneliness in China had the highest effect. The use of this scale in populations with divergent ethnic, genetic, social, and cultural characteristics, and hence variable risk factors, could lead to a specific variability in the prediction of healthy aging.

Author Information
Albert Sanchez-Niubo, Health Park Sant Joan de Déu, Spain
Carlos G Forero, International University of Catalonia, Spain
Iago Giné-Vázquez, Health Park Sant Joan de Déu, Spain
Josep Maria Haro, Health Park Sant Joan de Déu, Spain

Paper Information
Conference: AGen2020
Stream: Aging and Gerontology

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Posted by James Alexander Gordon