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Satisfaction With Life Linked to Reduced Heart Disease

Reduced coronary heart disease risk primarily mediated by decreased risk of angina

MONDAY, July 11 (HealthDay News) -- Satisfaction across specific life domains, particularly one's job, family, sex life, and self, is associated with a reduced risk of coronary heart disease (CHD), with the association primarily mediated by angina, according to a study published online July 4 in the European Heart Journal.

Julia K. Boehm, Ph.D., from the Harvard School of Public Health in Boston, and colleagues investigated the prospective association between specific life domain satisfaction and incident CHD, and whether different forms of CHD shared similar associations with satisfaction in 7,956 individuals who were healthy at the beginning of the study. Satisfaction within seven life domains was evaluated. Data from medical screenings, hospitals, and the British National Health Service Central Registry were used to determine incident CHD (angina, non-fatal myocardial infarction, or death from CHD) over five person-years of follow-up.

The investigators found that, after controlling for demographic characteristics, health behaviors, blood pressure, and metabolic functioning, satisfaction averaged across the domains correlated with a significantly reduced CHD risk (hazard ratio, 0.87). Satisfaction with work, family, sex life, and self were associated with a lower CHD risk, but love relationship, leisure activities, and standard of living had no impact. On assessing CHD outcomes separately, average domain satisfaction correlated with angina risk, but not with myocardial infarction or coronary death.

"This research indicates that being satisfied with specific life domains -- in particular, one's job, family, sex life, and self -- is associated with a reduction in incident CHD independently of traditional risk factors and ill-being, but these findings are primarily due to an association with angina," the authors write.

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