With increasing life expectancies worldwide, it is an important public health issue to identify factors that influence the quality of aging. We aimed to investigate the individual and combined roles of lifestyle factors at midlife for healthy aging (HA). We analyzed data from 2203 participants of the French ”Supplémentation en Vitamines et Minéraux Antioxydants” (SU.VI.MAX) cohort aged 45–60 years at baseline (1994–1995), and assessed the combined impact of lifestyle factors (weight, smoking status, physical activity, alcohol consumption, and diet) on HA (absence of chronic diseases and function-limiting pain, good physical and cognitive functioning, functional independence, no depressive symptoms, and good social and self-perceived health) with a five-component healthy lifestyle index (HLI). Relative risks (RR) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were estimated using a robust-error-variance Poisson regression. Approximately 39% of our sample aged healthily. After adjustment for potential confounders, a one-point increase in HLI was related to an 11% higher probability of HA (95% CI = 6%, 16%; p
< 0.001). The proportions of HA attributable to specific factors based on the “population attributable risk” concept were 7.6%, 6.0%, 7.8%, and 16.5% for body mass index (BMI), physical activity, diet quality, and smoking status, respectively. This study highlights the importance of healthy lifestyle habits at midlife for the promotion of good overall health during aging.
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