We examined the relationship of health factors and social support to life satisfaction in older adults dwelling in a rural town. The gender difference in variables related to life satisfaction was also discussed in this study. One hundred and forty-two older adults (86 females and 56 males) who completed a self-administered questionnaire and participated in a health examination in 1998 or 1999 comprised the study participants. The t-test and chi-square test were used to assess the differences between the two genders. Correlation measure and multiple regression analysis were used to assess the relationship between life satisfaction and other health related or socially related factors for each gender. Significant gender differences were observed in living status and several health related factors. According to the results of the multiple regression analyses, life satisfaction was related to mental health and age in females, while it was related to mental health status and social support from others in males. Gender differences in the variables associated with life satisfaction were observed among the community-dwelling older adults. These data suggest the importance of mental health for older adults. When preparing health promotion strategies for older adults, results of gender differences as they related to social support and life satisfaction should be applied in practice.
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