Why is love good for health?

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Overview

Is marriage good for your health? In general, research says yes. Married people live longer, have better access to care, enjoy a more satisfying sex life, are less stressed and have a healthier lifestyle.

Also, in married men’s case, the risk of developing heart disease, diabetes and depression is lower than in single people.


Contents

1. Overview
2. The advantages of marriage
3. Health benefits of marriage


The advantages of marriage

The list of health benefits that marriage offers is so long that even experts recommend happy marriage. There are some small differences, as some men and women do not benefit in the same way or at least not equally from this type of cohabitation.

A man’s sex life is much better than that of a woman after marriage, while women’s risk of developing depression tends to decrease more than their partners when they are involved in long-term relationships.

But marriage is not strictly necessary. Women and men can enjoy many health benefits even if just living together or if they have a long-term stable relationship, such as same-sex couples can not marry.


Health benefits of marriage

Life

Marriage prolongs life. Compared to their unmarried counterparts, married people live longer and there is less risk of premature death.

After some studies have found that the death rate was two times higher among unmarried men than of the married, in terms of married and unmarried women, the differences were insignificant.

Marriage plays an important role in protection against fatal accidents, violence and other similar acts involving mostly younger people.

Diseases

Some of the reasons why marriage can prolong life is that seems to reduce the risk of serious illness in some people. Possibility of triggering diabetes, cardiovascular disease, Alzheimer’s disease, lung disease and other chronic diseases are lower in married than unmarried people.

In case of most diseases, lowering the risk associated with marriage is about the same for both men and women. Fairly large differences are found in the case of heart disease. Marriage halves risk of death from cardiac causes in women, according to studies, while in men’s case, the percentage is lower.

Vices

Benefits related to cardiovascular disease disproportion between men and women may be partly explained by the fact that single men tend to lead a less healthy lifestyle than unmarried women; in their case there is higher probability to smoke, drink more and have various vices.

It has been shown in some studies that men who were married experienced a sudden and significant decrease consumption of marijuana and alcohol. Including married women drink less alcohol than those who are not married or involved in a long term relationship, but smoke marijuana after marriage, as often as they did before.

Although involved in a relationship seems to have less effect on smoking, there are notable differences here. For a woman who marries a smoker there is a pretty big risk to start smoking, but not vice versa: if their wives smoking, men are not willing to adopt the habit.

Simply, women may have a better influence on men than the reverse situation. Wives tend to support their partner more emotional and to encourage their husbands to quit smoking and drinking.

Depression

Although people love to complain that their partners are difficult, their company has a positive effect on their mental health, especially for women. This is especially true when it comes to depression, which is about twice as common in women.

Depression is an expression of female stress. One of the biggest benefits of marriage for women is lower risk of developing depression. Marriage seems to have a strong stabilizing effect for women who suffer from bipolar disorder.

Married women with bipolar disorder have fewer and much lighter depressive episodes than the unmarried, but no trend is found for men who suffer from this condition.

A long-term relationship with a partner seems to have the same beneficial effect on mental health of a woman as marriage.

Stress

Contrary to popular belief, men tend to stress more easily than women. Experiments have confirmed that when men are offered a stressful task, their level of cortisol increases more than women in the same situation. Fortunately for men who are involved in a romantic relationship stress level decreases.

Weight

One aspect in which marriage seems actually harm for overall health is weight accumulation. In general, especially married men, compared with bachelors, register an increasing in their body mass index.

Both men and women involved in long-term relationships tend to gain weight, however it seems that women tend to gain more weight and become overweight and obese. Although couples living together gain weight and women gain more weight than men, the number of their weight is lower than married women.

Sex life

Married couples and those living together have more active sex lives than those who are single or transient relationships. Half of married men reported in a large study that are extremely emotionally satisfied with their sex lives, compared with 33% of unmarried men or those who live with a partner.

In contrast, only 42% of married women were highly satisfied with their sex lives, compared to 31% of women not living with a partner.

Women’s sex life is not as satisfying during marriage as seems to be for men, because they often feel they do not get the appreciation they deserve, but also because of resentment about sharing in household affairs.

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