ERIC Number: EJ897659
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010-Oct
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 0
Environmental Volunteering and Health Outcomes over a 20-Year Period
Pillemer, Karl; Fuller-Rowell, Thomas E.; Reid, M. C.; Wells, Nancy M.
Gerontologist, v50 n5 p594-602 Oct 2010
Purpose: This study tested the hypothesis that volunteering in environmental organizations in midlife is associated with greater physical activity and improved mental and physical health over a 20-year period. Design and Methods: The study used data from two waves (1974 and 1994) of the Alameda County Study, a longitudinal study of health and mortality that has followed a cohort of 6,928 adults since 1965. Using logistic and multiple regression models, we examined the prospective association between environmental and other volunteerism and three outcomes (physical activity, self-reported health, and depression), with 1974 volunteerism predicting 1994 outcomes, controlling for a number of relevant covariates. Results: Midlife environmental volunteering was significantly associated with physical activity, self-reported health, and depressive symptoms. Implications: This population-based study offers the first epidemiological evidence for a significant positive relationship between environmental volunteering and health and well-being outcomes. Further research, including intervention studies, is needed to confirm and shed additional light on these initial findings.
Descriptors: Physical Activities, Health Promotion, Physical Health, Depression (Psychology), Physical Activity Level, Hypothesis Testing, Longitudinal Studies, Multiple Regression Analysis, Environment, Correlation, Volunteers, Symptoms (Individual Disorders), Well Being, Intervention, Mental Health, Adults
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A