Monday, March 9, 2009

Optimistic women live longer, healthier

Optimistic women who tend to see the glass half full rather than half empty live longer and much healthier, a new study has found.

According to the study presented at the annual meeting of the American Psychosomatic Society, women who expect good rather than bad things to happen are 14 percent less likely to die from any cause.

Compared to their pessimistic peers, optimists are more likely to be slim and physically active and are less likely to smoke. They are also less prone to high blood pressure and diabetes. Their strong social relationships helps them cope with chronic stress, lowering the risk of cardiovascular diseases.

The risk of death secondary to heart problems is reduced by 30 percent in these women. "Cynically hostile" women considered as highly mistrustful individuals are 16 percent more likely to die from any cause and 23 percent more vulnerable to death from cancer. Scientists concluded that optimism is directly linked to longevity.

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