2004
Volume 16, Issue 2
  • ISSN: 1388-3186
  • E-ISSN: 2352-2437

Abstract

International differences in health in older age are well-documented. Research on factors explaining these differences has not done justice to possible differences in factors related to ‘gender-regimes’. Data for this study were harmonised in the framework of the Comparison of Longitudinal European Studies on Aging (CLESA) project, which included population-based studies from Finland, Sweden, the Netherlands, Spain, Italy and Israel aged 75-84 years. Indicators of health were disability in self-care, depressed mood, and self-rated health. In addition to country (i.e., gender-regime), potential individual explanatory factors included socio-demographics, diseases, lifestyle, and social engagement. The findings show inter-country differences in disability from progressive to traditional gender-regimes according to a North-South gradient: men and women in northern countries reported less disability than in southern countries. Depressed mood showed similar differences, although in Finland it was higher than in other northern countries, and in Spain it was lower than in other southern countries. Self-rated health was poorer in southern than in northern countries, with Finland inbetween. The difference in women’s health between traditional and progressive genderregimes was larger for depressed mood and self-rated health than for disability. These differences persisted after accounting for individual explanatory factors. Among the explanatory factors, chronic morbidity showed the most consistent associations. The role of lifestyle and social factors varied across genders. Physical activity was more strongly associated with health in men than in women, whereas social factors were more prominent in women than in men. The international differences found in health largely corresponded to gender-regimes, and were only partly explained by individual factors. Further research on specific, gender-regime related factors is warranted.

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/content/journals/10.5117/TVGEND2013.2.DEEG
2013-06-01
2021-11-30
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  • Article Type: Research Article
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