Wednesday, October 2, 2019

From 2018... Salutogenic effects of adversity and the role of adversity for successful aging

From 2018...Salutogenic effects of adversity and the role of adversity for successful aging. Jan Höltge. Fall 2018, Universityof Zurich, Faculty of Arts, PhD Thesis. https://www.zora.uzh.ch/id/eprint/157239/1/157239.pdf

Abstract
The traditional psychopathological research of adversity has led to a deficit-and treatment-oriented approach to adversity and its effects. However, even though adversities are distressing, negative experiences in the first place, they also inherit resilience and well-being enhancing opportunities which can foster a more fulfilled life. This thesis synthesizes research on the salutogenic effects of adversityand provides empirical evidence for salutogenic effects of different levels of adversity. A mixed-methods project that consistedof a theoretical study, a quantitative longitudinal survey and qualitative interview study was conducted. Its aimswereto review the research on ‘optimal’ adversity, andto investigate the potential positive psychological effects of severe early-life and ‘optimal’ later-life adversityfor successful aging.

The first study systematically reviewed the literature on a potential ‘optimal’ level of adversity for human well-being and development using curvilinear analyses. A moderate level of adversity was found to be associated with better outcomes compared to higher and lower levels of adversity. The second study investigated potential age-specific salutogenic effectsof ‘optimal’ adversity in later life. It was found that a specific level of adverse experiences can support successful aging by supporting the maintenance of central resilience resources and satisfaction with life. The third study investigated if a subgroup of the Swiss Verdingkinder (former indentured child laborers) was able to age successful not despite, but because of its childhood experiences. Three overall factors emerged that were reported as supportive of successful aging: lightheartedness including effective stress-management, lifelong self-enhancement, and social mindedness. Hence, this study shows that known supportivefactors of successful aging can be the result of early-life adversity. Several underlying mechanisms and intervening factors of this relationship were identified.

In sum,this thesis gives further evidence for the salutogenic effects of adversity and provides implications for future research and praxis.

Firm-level data for 55 countries, 1991-2016: The riskiness of credit allocation, captured by Greenwood and Hanson (2013)’s ISS indicator, helps predict downside risks to GDP growth & systemic banking crises 2-3 years ahead

Working Paper No. 19/207 : The Riskiness of Credit Allocation and Financial Stability. Luis Brandao-Marques,Qianying Chen,Claudio Raddatz,Jérôme Vandenbussche,Peichu Xie. IMF Working Paper No. 19/207, September 27, 2019. https://www.imf.org/en/Publications/WP/Issues/2019/09/27/The-Riskiness-of-Credit-Allocation-and-Financial-Stability-48670

Summary: We explore empirically how the time-varying allocation of credit across firms with heterogeneous credit quality matters for financial stability outcomes. Using firm-level data for 55 countries over 1991-2016, we show that the riskiness of credit allocation, captured by Greenwood and Hanson (2013)’s ISS indicator, helps predict downside risks to GDP growth and systemic banking crises, two to three years ahead. Our analysis indicates that the riskiness of credit allocation is both a measure of corporate vulnerability and of investor sentiment. Economic forecasters wrongly predict a positive association between the riskiness of credit allocation and future growth, suggesting a flawed expectations process.

Despite the apparent irrationality of over-imitation behavior, should be conceptualized as a contextually flexible and, in fact, a normally highly functional phenomenon

‘Over-imitation’: A review and appraisal of a decade of research. Stefanie Hoehl et al. Developmental Review, Volume 51, March 2019, Pages 90-108. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.dr.2018.12.002

Highlights
•    We offer a comprehensive review of the existing literature on over-imitation.
•    We discuss methodological issues affecting the behavior in experiments.
•    Different theoretical perspectives are contrasted and critically assessed.
•    Over-imitation is a contextually flexible and normally functional phenomenon.

Abstract: After seeing an action sequence children and adults tend to copy causally relevant and, more strikingly, even perceivably unnecessary actions in relation to the given goal. This phenomenon, termed “over-imitation”, has inspired much empirical research in the past decade as well as lively theoretical debate on its cognitive underpinnings and putative role in the transmission of cultural knowledge. Here, we offer a comprehensive review of the existing literature to date, accompanied by a table including concise information on 54 published studies testing over-imitation in different species, age groups and cultures. We highlight methodological issues related to task and context that influence over-imitation rates and that should be carefully considered in study designs. We discuss the cognitive and motivational processes underlying and contributing to over-imitation, including normative action parsing, causal reasoning, motives of affiliation and social learning as well as their complex interplay. We conclude that despite the apparent irrationality of over-imitation behavior, recent studies have shown that its performance depends on the specific task, modeled actions and context variables, suggesting that over-imitation should be conceptualized as a contextually flexible and, in fact, a normally highly functional phenomenon.

Vegetarian products are perceived as being less caloric than their non-vegetarian equivalents, but participants in the study do not report more intention to eat more vegetarian products

Halo It’s Meat! the Effect of the Vegetarian Label on Calorie Perception and Food Choices. Théo Besson, Hugo Bouxom & Thibault Jaubert. Ecology of Food and Nutrition, Aug 26 2019. https://doi.org/10.1080/03670244.2019.1652820

ABSTRACT: In the last few years, vegetarian products have become a widespread dietary option in food industry to the point that large retail chains such as McDonald’s has offered a vegetarian burger to their customers (e.g., the Grand Veggie). In the present research, two studies investigated the influence of a vegetarian label on calorie perception, frequency consumption and food choices. In the first study (N = 211) participants were randomly assigned to an experimental design 2 (burger type: Grand Veggie vs Big Mac). In the second study (N = 915), participants were either exposed to a similar burger labeled vegetarian or a meat-based. Both studies show that vegetarian products are perceived as being less caloric than their non-vegetarian equivalents. However, participants do not report more intention to eat more vegetarian products and do not lead to differences in menu composition.

KEYWORDS: Health halo effect, calorie perception, food choices, vegetarian food

Parenting quality is most optimal when fathers’ testosterone system reacts in the expected direction given the context of the father-child interaction: a T decrease/increase during a harmonious/challenging interaction

Testosterone and Fathers’ Parenting Unraveled: Links with the Quantity and Quality of Father-Child Interactions. Else E. de Vries et al. Adaptive Human Behavior and Physiology,  October 2 2019. https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s40750-019-00118-z

Abstract
Objective: Individual differences in quality of father involvement in caregiving might in part be explained by fathers’ testosterone (T) levels. We examined the links between fathers’ (n = 32) salivary T levels, amount of time spent with their child (12–30 months of age), type of father-child interaction, and fathers’ sensitivity.

Methods: During two home visits, video observations of father-child interactions were conducted to measure fathers’ sensitivity during a challenging and harmonious interaction. Fathers’ saliva was collected several times throughout the day on a working day and on the home visit days, including right before and after each father-child interaction.

Results: Fathers’ T secretion throughout the day was lower on home visit days (i.e., days with a higher amount of time spent with their child) than on a working day. For both challenging and harmonious father-child interactions, mean T levels did not differ before and after father-child interactions. However, individual changes in fathers’ T levels during the father-child interactions did predict fathers’ sensitivity. Specifically, the more T increased during the challenging interaction, or decreased during the harmonious interaction, the more sensitive the father was during that interaction as well as during a subsequent interaction.

Conclusions: Parenting quality is most optimal when fathers’ T system reacts in the expected direction given the context of the father-child interaction, i.e., a T decrease during a harmonious interaction and a T increase during a challenging interaction. Our study underscores the importance of examining the interplay between biology, behavior, and caregiving context in fathers’ parenting.

Keywords: Fathers Testosterone Sensitivity Parenting Observation