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One isn’t only the loneliest number, it’s also the unhealthiest. Whether you’re alone by choice or circumstance, there’s no way around it — social isolation is bad for your health.
Research has already linked loneliness to a compromised immune system, high blood pressure and premature death…
But an analysis of available research has led to one more conclusion… feeling lonely and socially isolated increases your risk of having a stroke and developing coronary artery disease.
After examining 23 relevant studies which included data on more than 181,000 adults, researchers determined that loneliness and social isolation increase your risk of heart disease by 29 percent and increase your risk of stroke by 32 percent.
Based on their analysis, researchers concluded that loneliness and social isolation were at least as likely to cause heart disease and stroke as anxiety and job strain.
“Our work suggests that addressing loneliness and social isolation may have an important role in the prevention of two of the leading causes of morbidity in high income countries,” researchers wrote in their analysis.
Since it was only an observational study and not original research, researchers are hesitant to say they’ve discovered a cause and effect relationship between loneliness and these two major diseases.
But loneliness has already developed a really bad rap when it comes to its effect on your health, so it wouldn’t be much of stretch…
- A 2011 research study linked loneliness to poor sleep quality;
- A 2012 research study found that feeling lonely is linked to developing dementia later in life;
- And another study found that married people are more likely to survive cancer than their single counterparts.
But even though the outlook appears pretty bleak, you’re not doomed if you prefer the single life…
Research also shows that exercising and socialization make for a powerful combination health-wise. That’s because people who exercise tend to socialize more — and reap the physical and mental health benefits of both.
So if you’re feeling all alone, heading to your local gym, yoga studio or park isn’t a bad idea, as long as it’s safe to do so.
And during those times when you have a packed social calendar and your friends and family members are driving you crazy (like the holidays), just remember, they may not be perfect, but spending time with them may be better for your health than spending it alone.
Editor’s note: There are numerous safe and natural ways to decrease your risk of blood clots including the 25-cent vitamin, the nutrient that acts as a natural blood thinner and the powerful herb that helps clear plaque. To discover these and more, click here for Hushed Up Natural Heart Cures and Common Misconceptions of Popular Heart Treatments!