How Your Marriage Can Help You Live Longer

At a time when marriage doesn’t seem to be as popular as it once was, out comes a new study this week that may prompt more people to get married.

According to the study published in the journal Health Psychology, Married people who rated their unions as “very happy” or “pretty happy” had roughly 20% lower odds of dying early than people who said their marriages were “not too happy”.

And this wasn’t just a quick study.  The findings were based on interviews with more than 19,000 married people up to age 90 between 1978 and 2010. And then the researchers tracked their health and survival through 2014.

In a report at, one of the co-authors of the study talks about the several ways that a good marriage seems to improve health.  Among them, is how married people may encourage their spouses to adopt healthy habits such as eating well, exercising and seeing a doctor regularly.

But he says there also appears to be something else going on when it comes to married couples who rate their marriage pretty or very happy.

He says a supportive marriage seems to help psychological health, which affects physical health.  As he puts it, marriage “provides people with meaningful roles and identity, a purpose in life, a sense of security.”

If you want to live a longer life, it appears you and your spouse should work to make sure your marriage is a happy one.

As that Biblical proverb says  “A cheerful heart is good medicine”

(Photo credit Getty Images)



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