How closely the body and mind are connected!
Doctors still don't know exactly why more socially isolated women suffer strokes but they do.
A study was conducted by the VA San Diego Healthcare System in California that analyzed women, their health and their relationships with the outside world.
According to Reuters Health, "...the researchers examined the relationship between social networks and stroke in a cohort of 629 women who were evaluated for cardiovascular disease risk factors as part of a 6-year study. The participants completed the Social Network Index, which measured the presence or absence of 12 types of social relationships." http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/news/fullstory_64371.html
The results showed that older women, with fewer social ties and who were more isolated than their peers, experience strokes at 2.7 times than women who have an active social life and support network.
Researchers suggest that people with strong social ties have lower stress levels and smaller blood pressure fluctuations that leads one to think that women with good social lives are often healthier!
Doctors also note that isolated women may be less compliant with taking medication, face depression more often, and may be less physically active.
Hopefully a study like this will encourage older women to form walking groups, take a swim class or join a community center and remain active- both socially and physically.
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