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Dr. Drew

Driven by current events, "Dr. Drew" on HLN focuses on the human - and human behavior - at the center of the story.

Getting married before 40 leads to longer life?

  • Study suggests people who had not tied the knot by midlife were at the highest risk of death
  • Earlier studies have indicated that married couples are healthier
Getting married before 40 leads to longer life?

A new study might be evidence enough for single people to hightail it to Vegas and get hitched, or you could be facing an early death.

Well ... OK, that may be stretching a bit far. Nevertheless, researchers say they have analyzed data from nearly 5,000 individuals born in the 1940s.

Dr. Ilene Siegler and her team from Duke University Medical Center found that people who were never married were more than twice as likely to die in middle age compared to those who had been in a long-term relationship.

As reported in the Daily Mail, Dr Siegler explained, “Living to a ripe old age is expected, particularly for people who reach the age of 40, which makes it important to understand why some people do not survive to become elderly.  Getting and remaining married has long been associated with better survival, especially for men, but the impact on the risk of dying in middle age has not been previously researched."
Earlier studies have indicated that married couples experience lower levels of heart disease, cancers, flu, Alzheimer’s, depression and stress.
Ellen Idler, a sociologist at Emory University, has even authored a study which indicates married adults who undergo heart surgery are three times more likely than single people to survive the three months immediately following their operation.

Bottom line: When you vow, “Till death do us part”, that may just be the secret to a longer, more healthy life.  

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