Divorced people have more heart attacks
Divorce is not only difficult emotionally, but it can also have a physical impact. A new study published in the journal Circulation says the chronic stress related to divorce can have long-term effects on the body, including an increase in the risk of heart attacks.
Researchers from Duke University analyzed 15,827 people from 1992 and 2010. About one in three people had been divorced at least once. The findings showed women who were divorced had a 24 percent increased heart attack risk compared to women who had not been divorced. The risk jumped to 77 percent in women who underwent multiple divorces. For men, however, the heart attack risk was increased by 10 percent for the first divorce and 30 percent after multiple divorces. If people remarried, the risk in women improved only slightly but men were able to bounce back.
The researchers aren’t exactly sure why the divorce causes such a heightened increase in heart attack risk, except to assume that the stress and psychological impacts from divorce play a role in immune function as inflammation and stress hormones increase. More studies are needed to better understand the possible connection between heart attacks and divorce.