Religion and Disability Among the Elderly in Brazil, 2006–2010

Luciana C. Alves , Universidade Estadual de Campinas (UNICAMP)
Claudia C. A. Pereira, Escola Nacional de Saúde Pública (FIOCRUZ)
Jair Santos, Universidade de São Paulo
Yeda Duarte, Universidade de São Paulo

Religion may be an important factor for the future health of the global population. There is a study gap that proposes to study religion and health among the elderly in Brazil. The aim this study was to assess contribution of religion in disability among community-living older Brazilian people between 2006 to 2010. Data came from SABE Study (Saúde, Bem-Estar e Envelhecimento/Health, Wellbeing and Ageing). Multiple binary logistic regressions model were used to identify association between religious activity and difficult at least one ADL in 2010 adjusted by age, sex, marital status, employment status and self-rated health in 2006. The results revealed that those with rarely or never religious activity had a risk 28% higher to progress to difficulty with at least one ADL. No affiliation was a protective factor (RR=0.43). The findings of the present study make an important contribution to the literature in Brazil and in developing countries.

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 Presented in Session 6. Health & Mortality & Aging