Will you protect my heart? Er—be my wife? Happy heart, healthy heart: Marriage may reduce your heart attack risk, says a new study in the European J...
Happy heart, healthy heart: Marriage may reduce your heart attack risk, says a new study in the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology.
Researchers analyzed data on more than 15,000 cardiac events among subjects aged 35 to 99 years old. Among these events, a little more than half resulted in death in the next 28 days.
The results: Depending on their age, unmarried men were 58 to 66 percent more likely to have a heart attack than guys who had tied the knot, and single men were 60 to 168 percent more likely to die of a heart attack than married men.
How can the Mrs. protect your pump? The researchers speculate that married people may have better health habits, a better financial status, and a higher level of social support—all qualities that could be associated with better heart health, says lead study author Aino Lammintausta, M.D., of Turku University Hospital. Another explanation may be the timeliness factor: If the wife is around when the husband has a heart attack, he may receive resuscitation faster or the wife may call for help quicker, Dr. Lammintausta explains.
Plus, being single has been linked to a higher risk of depression, which appears to be connected to higher cardiovascular mortality rates, Lammintausta says. In fact, a study published in the journal Heart found that people who have both heart disease and clinical depression are four times as likely to have a heart attack or stroke. Feeling unhappy could cause inflammation and change how your body processes triglycerides (blood fats).
Still haven’t found a lucky lady? Don’t worry. You don’t need a wife to keep your ticker in tip-top shape—just follow these 100 simple tips to protect your heart.
Additional reporting by Andrew Daniels
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