The Role of Existential Beliefs Within the Relation of Centenarians' Health and Well-Being

J Relig Health. 2017 Aug;56(4):1111-1122. doi: 10.1007/s10943-016-0297-5.


The purpose of this study was to explore the role of existential beliefs in mediating the influence of health on centenarians' well-being. A total of 80 centenarians (mean age 101.1; SD = 1.3; 81.3 % women) with no/minor cognitive impairment were included. The OARS questionnaire for diseases and functional capacity (ADL, IADL), the Satisfaction with Life Scale, and the existential beliefs subscale were used for data collection. The findings suggest that existential resources are a crucial element for mitigating the impact of health constraints in subjective well-being in this population. Appropriate models of intervention for very old age that recognize the importance of religion, spirituality, and meaning of life are to be considered.

Keywords: Centenarians; Existential beliefs; Functional capacity; Satisfaction with life.

MeSH terms

  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Existentialism / psychology*
  • Female
  • Geriatric Assessment / methods*
  • Health Status*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Personal Satisfaction*
  • Portugal
  • Religion and Psychology*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires