Optimism keeps heart in robust health

July 5th, 2011 - 5:40 pm ICT by IANS  

London, July 5 (IANS) Research involving thousands of civil servants in Britain revealed that the more self-satisfied they were, the fewer problems they had with their hearts.

Researchers from the Harvard University, US, couldn’t explain why this is the case, especially as the finding still stood when factors such as weight and blood pressure were taken into account.

Almost 8,000 civil servants were quizzed about their satisfaction with seven areas of their everyday lives - love and relationships, hobbies, standard of living, job, family, sex life and one’s self, the European Heart Journal reports.

Data on their heart health was then taken from their medical records over the following six years and the two compared, according to the Daily Mail.

Those who were highly satisfied with their lives overall were 13 percent less likely to have suffered heart problems, with self-satisfaction, happy working, family and sex lives being particularly important.

Studies also show that pessimists and people who lack self-confidence have a greater risk of heart attacks and strokes than their more optimistic friends.

Harvard researcher Julia Boehm said: “These findings suggest that interventions to bolster positive psychological states, not just alleviate negative psychological states, may be relevant among high-risk individuals.”

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