The Importance of Multi-level Theoretical Integration in Biopsychosocial Research

Daniel J. Kruger
2007 Psychological Topics  
There is a growing interest in the unification of health research in a biopsychosocial framework. However, increasing specialization and advancement in instrumentation makes it more difficult to bridge understanding across areas. It would be very useful to ground biopsychosocial research in the most powerful explanatory framework in the life sciences, evolution by natural and sexual selection. This would require and explanation of the functional significance of the phenomena related to the area
more » ... related to the area of study, in addition to descriptions of the mechanism. The application of an integrative evolutionary framework will be illustrated with the example of sex differences in human mortality rates, which are related to endocrine, psychological, and socio-environmental factors. The integrative evolutionary model will be contrasted with a theoretical model that acknowledges physiological and social influences, but artificially separates them.
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