BACKGROUND: We investigated whether offspring protect or jeopardize in parents.
METHODS: We used data from the Korean Longitudinal Study of Aging and performed a longitudinal analysis of 10,236 individuals at baseline (2006) to estimate the association between offspring-related factors and self-rated health among individuals >/=45 years of age.
RESULTS: The estimate for self-rated health was 0.612 times lower (95% confidence interval [CI], 0.503-0.746: P<0.0001) for those with zero offspring. The estimate for self-rated health was 0.736 (95% CI, 0.635-0.853: P<0.0001) for those with five offspring or more. The estimate for self-rated health was 0.707 (95% CI, 0.528-0.947: P=0.020) for males with zero offspring. The estimate for self-rated health was 0.563 (95% CI, 0.422-0.751: P<0.001) for females with no offspring and for females with five or more offspring. The estimate for self-rated health was 0.686 times lower (95% CI, 0.573-0.822: P<0.0001) for those with five or more offspring compared to females with two offspring.
CONCLUSION: Those with more offspring (>/=5) and those with no offspring tended to have an increased probability of low self-rated health. Overall, our results suggest that offspring have a significant positive effect on self-rated health, which was evident graphically as an inverted U-shape.
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