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Big Five personality traits and allostatic load in midlife

Tidsskriftartikel - 2019

Resume

OBJECTIVE: To examine the cross-sectional associations of Big Five personality traits with midlife allostatic load, including the role of sex, socio-demographic factors and health-related behaviours.

DESIGN: Cross-sectional analyses of 5512 members of the Copenhagen Aging and Midlife Biobank, aged 49-63 years, 69% men.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURE: Allostatic load (AL) based on 14 biomarkers representing the inflammatory, cardiovascular and metabolic system.

RESULTS: Due to significant sex × trait interactions, analyses were stratified by sex. Openness and Conscientiousness were inversely associated with AL in both sexes, and Extraversion was positively associated with AL in men. Adjusting for socio-demographic factors significantly attenuated the association of Openness in both sexes and of Extraversion in men, for whom the inverse association of Agreeableness with AL was strengthened. Further adjusting for health-related behaviours, the Conscientiousness-AL association was attenuated but remained significant, and Agreeableness remained significantly associated with AL in men.

CONCLUSION: Results imply that higher levels of Agreeableness (in men) and Conscientiousness are associated with lower levels of AL above and beyond socio-demographic factors and health-related behaviours. The study further contributes by demonstrating the relevance of sex × trait and trait × trait interactions in the personality-health literature.

Reference

Christensen DS, Flensborg-Madsen T, Garde E, Hansen ÅM, Mortensen EL. Big Five personality traits and allostatic load in midlife. Psychology and Health 2019;34(8):1011-1028.
doi: 10.1080/08870446.2019.1585851

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