While 44% of the US population are yet to find love, we know that being part of a pair can actually lead to better health. It improves your mental health, helps fight off diseases and could even relieve you of your most dangerous vices.
Here are some of the ways that being in love can help you live a healthier life.
Getting hitched could be the answer to living forever – or at least a bit longer. When compared with single ladies (and men), happily married people have a longer average lifespan and are 10-15% less likely to die prematurely. Research in 2007 found that death rates among unmarried Europeans over 40 were twice as high as married men.
Having someone else to look out for your health can be a big help. They can catch that rash on the back of your leg you couldn’t spot or encourage you to give up unhealthy habits, such as smoking or binge drinking.
A cuddle a day keeps the doctor away, apparently. A 2014 study at Carnegie Mellon University found that frequent hugging can protect people from the effects of stress and infection. Being in a relationship means you’re more likely to have someone who will listen to your woes and offer you a cuddle which will make it all better.
Being loved up means we generally experience a higher level of happiness than our single friends. Romantic relationships and happiness have been linked time and time again and it’s because of the feel-good hormone dopamine.
In fact, a study from Rutgers University found that when participants looked at photos of people they deeply loved, they had an increase of dopamine brain activity – sweet!
– RELATED: How To Encourage Your Partner To Get Healthy –
4. Clear skin
When our love life is sorted, so is our skin. Thanks to a reduction in that pesky stress hormone, cortisol, our skin is less prone to stress-induced acne that can come with free-floating cortisol. Hello, healthy glow!
5. Immune system
You might not think that having a row with your other half gives you anything more than a headache but, research suggests it could actually have a positive impact on your immunity.
In a study by Ronald Glazer and Janice Kiecolt-Glaser, it was concluded that arguing in a positive and loving way has a higher immediate immune function than couples who have negative, nasty arguments.
6. Motivation to work out
Most people assume that being in a long-term relationship will lead to them and their partner ‘letting themselves go’. A study published in the journal Obesity Research found that the average weight gain in the first two years of marriage is six to eight pounds.
You may start piling on the pounds after your wedding day, but research suggests working together to get rid of them is more effective than doing it alone. A study from the Department of Kinesiology at Indiana University found that married couples who worked out separately had a 43% dropout rate over a year, compared to a 6.3% dropout rate amongst couples who went together. Couples that train together, stay together.
7. Sexual health
It isn’t news to find that sex has amazing health benefits. People who are married or cohabiting have roughly twice as much sex as those who are single and the sex they’re having is more satisfactory.
Not only does sex send all the dopamine to our brain, making us happier, but it has been linked to numerous health gains such as improved immune systems, lowered blood pressure and a Planned Parenthood study even found it could regulate your periods. Time to head to the bedroom, for health reason of course.
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