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Dispositional gratitude, health-related factors, and lipid profiles in midlife: a biomarker study

Hartanto, A., Majeed, N. M., Lua, V. Y. Q., Wong, J., & Chen, N. R. Y.

April 2022


Dispositional gratitude has emerged in the literature to be associated with many health benefits in measures ranging from self-reported health to biomarkers of cardiovascular risk. However, little is known about the link between dispositional gratitude and lipid profiles. Drawing from the Gratitude and Self-improvement Model that grateful individuals are more likely to strive for actual self-improvement such as engaging in healthy lifestyles, we investigated the relation between dispositional gratitude and serum lipid levels. Participants consisted of 1800 adults from the National Survey of Midlife Development in the United States (MIDUS) 2: Biomarker Project (N = 1054) and MIDUS Refresher: Biomarker Project (N = 746). Serum lipid profiles were measured through fasting blood samples. After controlling for demographics, use of antihyperlipidemic mediation, and personality traits, we found that higher dispositional gratitude was associated with lower triglyceride levels. Results also revealed that healthy diets and lower BMI partially mediated the gratitude-triglyceride association. However, some variations in the analytic method may influence the associations between gratitude and triglycerides levels. Our findings provide preliminary evidence suggesting dispositional gratitude as a promising psychological factor that is associated with a healthier lipid profile.

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