Objective: The purpose of this study was to determine whether and how global life satisfaction is associated with bone mineral density (BMD) and bone loss.
Methods: A total of 2167 women from a cohort of Finnish women born in 1932 to 1941 were included in the cross-sectional and 1147 women in the 10-year longitudinal part of the present study. Participants responded to a postal enquiry and underwent femoral BMD densitometry in 1999 (baseline) and 2009 (follow-up). During the follow-up, their life satisfaction was repeatedly measured using a four-item scale. Self-reported data on health, life-style, and medication were used to adjust the multivariate linear regression models.
Results: Mean (standard deviation) femoral BMD decreased over the 10-year follow-up from 880 (125) to 846 (122) mg/cm2. In the multivariate model, life satisfaction (p = .028) and its improvement (p = .001) predicted reduced bone loss, whereas hospitalization due to depression predicted increased bone loss (B = −0.523 annual % change, standard error = 0.212, p = .014). These effects were independent of each other.
Conclusions: Easily assessed global life satisfaction should be taken into account when effects of aging and prevention of osteoporosis as well as health promotion in postmenopausal women are considered.