Healthy seniors are happier than youngsters, new study finds

A new study finds that healthy older adults are happier than other age groups, reporting less negative thinking and brooding and greater life satisfaction.

Stefan Sütterlin and colleagues of the University of Luxembourg and Germany's University of Würzburg examined the relationship between aging and depression. The study, announced on Monday, is set to be published in the Journal of Aging Research.

In the study, 300 participants, both men and women aged 15 to 87, were asked to rate their negative thoughts, depression, and personal well-being. "Researchers found that life satisfaction was negatively impacted by brooding, with participants aged 63 and above reporting less brooding compared to others," writes health and science news website ScienceDaily on Monday.

A UK study announced last year found having a good social life and staying active can keep you healthy, and therefore happier, in your golden years. In a survey funded by the UK's Economic and Social Research Council, elderly people reported a higher quality of life when they could move around, take care of basic needs, and have friends and family with whom they could socialize. Another key to happiness, cited by the researchers, is resourcefulness, such as being able to compensate when they can no longer do the things they could before.

Other ways to stay vibrant as you grow older: Reader's Digest magazine suggests staying intellectually engaged and being creative. Religion can also play a vital role in aging well, reports the magazine, as can being an extrovert.

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