Studies continuously reveal that people in satisfying relationships live longer, are happier and encounter less health issues throughout their lives. Choosing the right partner will not only have a positive impact on your emotional well-being but also on your physical health. In fact, the quality of your relationship plays as big a role in your health as getting a good night’s sleep, eating a healthy diet and not smoking.
It should be mentioned that not being in a romantic relationship is perfectly normal. If this is the case, it is important to notice the quality of the relationships you do have and the frequency in which you socialize with others. Relationships and one's level of sociability can either positively or negatively impact one's overall health. Research reveals that social isolation, living alone and loneliness can increase ones mortality risk from 20%-32% depending on gender, age and socio-economic status. This information is key as it is obviously possible to be lonely even when one has various relationships. Whether one has a partner, family or friendship as the focus of their social life, it helps to take a step back and evaluate these relationships.
On the flip side of healthy relationships, there are toxic relationships. These are common and can indeed harm one's health. If one is in this situation, it is better to break away and be single as an unhealthy relationship and/or social isolation is linked to depression, cognitive decline and an increase in premature death. Additionally, research reveals that unhealthy relationships can cause chronic pain, a derailed diet, weight gain, stress and an increased risk of health conditions.
As you can see, choosing the right partner and/or maintaining healthy relationships in general is super important for one's mental well-being, physical health and quality of life.
See these 6 health benefits that occur when you choose the right partner:
6 Benefits of a Healthy Relationship
- Help Achieve Healthy Goals
Unhealthy lifestyles are linked to death from chronic disease all over the world. Some bad health risks are smoking, being overweight, poor diet, alcohol consumption and inactivity. Studies reveal that if you are looking to ditch unhealthy habits for good, you will be likely to succeed in doing so if your partner makes these changes too.
For example, in one study, 50% of women who smoked succeeded in quitting if the partner quit at the same time as them. This is in comparison to 17% who had non-smoker partners and 8% with partners that were regular smokers.
- Decrease Risk of Health Conditions
According to research, having an optimistic spouse predicts fewer chronic illnesses over time. In the words of Eric Kim, a doctoral student at University of Michigan, “A growing body of research shows that people in our social networks can have a profound influence on our health and well-being.” This means that someone elses optimism may decrease your stress, increase your happiness and in turn allow fewer health issues to be present.
Another study from the University of Rochester, revealed that people who are happily married are up to three times as likely to be alive 15 years after having coronary bypass surgery. This is in comparison those who are unmarried. Married people are also less at risk for cardiovascular problems than those who are unmarried.
- Pain Relief
Investigators from the University of Colorado discovered that when a woman is in pain and her partner touches her, the heart rates and respiratory patterns of both individuals synchronize and the woman’s pain is relieved.
This study supports a term called, interpersonal synchronization.
Interpersonal Synchronization – a phenomenon in which people start to physiologically mirror those they spend time with. The more empathic the partner, the higher the synchronization between the two when they touch. “Pavel Goldstein – a postdoctoral pain researcher at the University of Colorado, Boulder.
- Improves Fitness Level
Improving your fitness can also improve the fitness of your partner. In one study, couples were asked about physical activity levels in two separate medical visits spaced 6 years apart. During the first visit, wives who met recommended guidelines for physical activity had a husband who was 80% more likely to reach their goals in comparison to the less active wives.
- Improves Mental & Physical Health
Studies from Cardiff University in the U.K., revealed that individuals who are married live longer. Women have better mental health while in committed relationships, and men have better physical health. This means that long term committed relationships are good for physical and psychological health
Companionship & Healthy Habits
Overwhelming research shows that we are living in a time where unhealthy habits lead us to poor health.
By taking advantage of the health beneifts a quality companionship and solid social network can bring, we can attain a much better quality of life and decrease the occurence of both physical and mental health conditions.