Age and Weight Discrimination Can Affect Health of People over 50

iStock/Thinkstock(TALLAHASSEE, Fla.) -- It does stink getting old, especially if you feel discriminated against because of your age, weight or a physical disability.

A four-year study by researchers at Florida State University College of Medicine says these kinds of biases led to quicker physical and mental health deterioration than in older people who didn’t feel discriminated against.

Lead author Angelina Sutin and her team made their findings based on more than 6,000 adults, 50 and older, who took part in the Health and Retirement Study.

Participants evaluated their physical, emotional and cognitive health in 2006 and again in 2010 while also reporting on incidents of perceived discrimination.

What Sutin found unusual was that declines in physical and emotional health for older adults were not as significant in those who were discriminated against due to race, sex, ancestry or sexual orientation.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

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