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Marital Bliss


Positive heart health benefits associated with life partnerships

Your spouse; there are times when it feels like you can’t live with them and you can’t live without them. Marital relationships have a unique dynamic; your partner can affect your health both positively and negatively. New research now suggests that married patients have improved survival after a heart attack.

A study presented at the European Society of Cardiology took a closer look at the effect of marital status on survival in patients with cardiovascular risk factors or a previous heart attack. They reviewed a database of patients called the Algorithm for Comorbidities, Associations, Length of Stay and Mortality (ACALM) from 2000-2013.  Out of over 900,000 patients, they found that just over 300,000 had a previous heart attack, elevated blood pressure, high cholesterol or high blood sugar. Each was identified as single, married, divorced or widowed.

At study’s end, of those who experienced a heart attack, married patients were 14% more likely to survive. But that’s not all; those with high cholesterol were 16% more likely to be alive at end of study if they were married and those with diabetes and high blood pressure also experienced a benefit of 14 and 10% improved survival rates, respectively.

Having a healthy relationship can enrich our lives both physically and mentally. Researchers in this study suggest that marriage plays a protective role by offering emotional support and a partner in living a healthy lifestyle including medication adherence. Senior author Dr. Rahul Potluri suggests the findings are important for people silently living with cardiovascular risk factors like high blood pressure and diabetes that put them at risk for heart attack.

So this Valentine’s Day, say thank you to your sweet heart by sharing a sweet treat like our Heart in Hand Tarts.

Published February 1, 2018

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