Healthy Aging pp 341-347 | Cite as

Cultural and Socioeconomic Determinants of Healthy Aging

  • Sharon L. Brennan-OlsenEmail author
  • Shae Quirk
  • Sarah M. Hosking
  • Natalie K. Hyde
  • Rachel Duckham
  • Lynne Millar


Our health is primarily a result of our environment: where we are born, grow, play, live and work influences our prospects of healthy aging. This chapter provides an overview of the Developmental Origins of Health and Disease (DOHaD) theory and discusses the social determinants of health (SDH) in terms of social and cultural patterns of lifestyle behaviours and chronic disease outcomes that may act as barriers or enablers to healthy aging. We consider belief systems regarding the experience of aging and attitudes to the aging person. We argue that whilst social and cultural determinants may influence the aging process, targeted attention in the clinical setting, and affording extra time to ensure effective health communications, may ameliorate the negative effect of low health literacy.


Socioeconomic status Cultural Health literacy Healthy aging Lifestyle behaviours Upstream social determinants 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Sharon L. Brennan-Olsen
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Shae Quirk
    • 3
    • 4
  • Sarah M. Hosking
    • 5
  • Natalie K. Hyde
    • 6
  • Rachel Duckham
    • 2
    • 7
  • Lynne Millar
    • 2
    • 8
  1. 1.Department of Medicine-Western HealthThe University of MelbourneMelbourneAustralia
  2. 2.Australian Institute for Musculoskeletal Science (AIMSS)The University of Melbourne and Western HealthSt AlbansAustralia
  3. 3.Monash Institute of Cognitive and Clinical Neurosciences, School of Psychological SciencesMonash UniversityClaytonAustralia
  4. 4.Orygen, The National Centre of Excellence in Youth Mental HealthParkvilleAustralia
  5. 5.Monash University, Centre for Medicine Use and SafetyMelbourneAustralia
  6. 6.School of Medicine, Faculty of HealthDeakin UniversityGeelongAustralia
  7. 7.Deakin University, Institute for Physical Activity and Nutrition SciencesGeelongAustralia
  8. 8.Australian Health Policy CollaborationMelbourneAustralia

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