Marriage May Reduce Risk of Heart Attack

Study shows health benefits of relationships

A study looking at more than 15,000 cardiac events occurring over a ten-year period concluded that the risk for heart attack is 58-66 percent higher in unmarried men and 60-65 percent higher in unmarried women. Though the risk for heart attack is almost equal among men and women, unmarried people are also much more likely to die from a cardiac event.

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Whether married
or unmarried,
the important thing
is having strong relationships
with people.

Relationships and behavior modification

Researchers at University Hospital in Finland believe this may be due to the fact married people may have better health habits. Cleveland Clinic cardiologist Richard Krasuski, MD, agrees.

“I think we have known for a long time that when we are modifying behaviors, whether it be quitting smoking or getting people to exercise, if we involve the spouse as part of this, people do better,” he says. “I don’t think necessarily it’s only being married. It’s having strong relationships with people. Confiding in other people.”

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The importance of having someone close

Resuscitation or calling for help may also contribute to these statistics. Whether married or unmarried, Dr. Krasuski urges patients to have someone they can lean on in a time of need.