The need to belong: A parallel process latent growth curve model of late life negative affect and cognitive function

Yuhan Ni, Jenn Yun Tein, Minqiang Zhang, Fengquan Zhen, Feifei Huang, Yingshi Huang, Yiming Yao, Jiaqi Mei

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Objective: Late life negative affect (NA) often co-occurs with poor cognitive function (CF); however, very little is known about the mechanism of the relationship between them. We examined the longitudinal relationship between NA and CF over a 12-year period and the effects of several related risk factors in a general sample. Methods: Five waves of data on Chinese Longitudinal Healthy Longevity Survey (CLHLS) were collected from a total of 1,314 elderly Chinese, aged 60 and over. A parallel process latent growth curve model with two time-invariant covariates and seven time-varying covariates was used to demonstrate the joint trajectories of NA and CF to assess their related factors in the elderly during a 12-year period. Results: Significant association of negative affect and cognitive decline was found at baseline and over time for our sample. Poorer initial cognitive performance predicted a faster increase in negative affect over time. Being female was associated with worse initial performance and a faster rate of deterioration of NA and CF. Regular exercise, married status, social activities, and Mahjong playing were associated with slower rates of negative affect increase and cognitive decline. Conclusion: These findings demonstrated that the late life negative affect co-occurs with cognitive decline and negative affect might be a mutative mental reaction to cognitive dysfunction. Gender difference, exercise benefit, and the “need to belong” effect were observed over time, highlighting the importance of exercise and socialization for older females.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number104049
JournalArchives of gerontology and geriatrics
StatePublished - Jul 1 2020


  • Cognitive function
  • Late life
  • Negative affect
  • Parallel process latent growth curve model
  • Time-varying covariate

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Aging
  • Gerontology
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology


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