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Marriage Makes the Heart Healthy

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Being lovesick has shown to be good for the heart. Although love can sometimes break hearts, studies show that married couples under 50-years-old had a 12 percent lower risk of heart disease, compared to singles their age.

The research has found that married couples—both women and men at any age–are less likely than divorced, widowed, or single people to suffer from various heart or blood vessel problems, despite risk factors such as diabetes and high cholesterol.

The study, which has been the largest to look at marriage and heart health, included 3.5 million Americans who were screened from 2003 through 2008. Information collected included: smoking habits, diabetes, obesity, exercise, family history, high blood pressure, and other factors.

According to Health Medicine Network, the study found that married individuals had a five percent lower risk of any form of heart diseases. Conversely, widowers had a three percent greater risk and divorced individuals, a five percent greater risk of cardiovascular diseases.

Obesity was a common denominator for singles and divorcees, and widowers were the group that lacked exercise, had higher rates of diabetes, and had high blood pressure. Smoking was highest among divorcees.

"It might be that if someone is married, they have a spouse who encourages them to take better care of themselves," Dr. Jeffrey Berger, a preventive cardiologist at NYU Langone Medical Center, told the Associated Press.

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