MSNBC reports that a researcher measured the effects that your relationships have on your health. After studying a random sample of women, the researchers found that those who had “attachment insecurity” had lower immune systems, were more susceptible to disease, and had higher instances of skin diseases such as psoriasis. Of course you can’t say that bad relationships alone make you more likely to get sick, but for those that already have problems, bad relationships could worsen your health.
On CBS, medical correspondent Dr. Emily Senay notes that previous research suggests close relationships are good for heart health, and there's lots of evidence that emotions can have powerful effects on physical health. Psychological factors are now recognized as contributing to the development of heart disease.
According to the Washington Post, A bad marriage may be bad for your health. Nancy Henry of the University of Utah and her colleagues studied 276 couples who had been married an average of 20 years. The couples filled out questionnaires assessing positive aspects of their marriage, such as mutual support, emotional warmth, friendliness and confiding in each other, as well as negative aspects, such as arguments, feelings of hostility and how often they disagreed over topics such as children, sex, money and in-laws. They were also tested for signs of depression, and went to a clinic to measure their weight, cholesterol, blood sugar and other symptoms of "metabolic syndrome," which increases the risk for diabetes and heart disease.
Both men and women who reported more marital strain were more likely to have signs of depression. But only the women were more likely to have metabolic syndrome symptoms. In fact, the effect of depression from marital strain was about the same as the effect of being sedentary versus moderately active.
Research has indicated that women are more sensitive to the effects of relationship problems than men, and there's good evidence that stress can increase the risk for many of the factors that cause the metabolic syndrome.
Are you or someone you know in a Killer Relationship? What effects has it had on your health?
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