Associations among social engagement, meal-related behaviour, satisfaction with food-related life and wellbeing in Danish older adults living alone

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The present study aimed at exploring associations among meal-related behaviour, social engagement factors, satisfaction with food-related life (SWFL) to assess food-related wellbeing and subjective wellbeing in Danish older adults living alone. Three hundred and eighty-eight older adults aged 65–75 years from six Danish municipalities completed an online or article-based survey addressing home cooking, commensality, loneliness, SWFL and subjective wellbeing. Home cooking frequency and self-perceived cooking skills were positively associated with SWFL but not with subjective wellbeing. Commensality was positively associated with SWFL but was not associated with subjective wellbeing. The level of loneliness was negatively associated with SWFL and with subjective wellbeing. Satisfaction with food-related life and subjective health status were positively associated with subjective wellbeing. Male and female respondents did not differ in meal-related behaviour, social engagement factors, SWFL and wellbeing. While the cross-sectional nature of this study does not allow for the direction of causality to be determined, these results suggest that older adults living alone could benefit from a higher frequency of home-cooked meals, a higher level of self-perceived cooking skills and commensality to support SWFL. A higher level of SWFL could, in turn, lead to a higher level of wellbeing.

Original languageEnglish
JournalNutrition Bulletin
Pages (from-to)346–355
Publication statusPublished - 2022

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 The Authors. Nutrition Bulletin published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of British Nutrition Foundation.

    Research areas

  • commensality, cooking, food-related life, loneliness, meals, social engagement

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