Over the last few decades, many studies have shown negative states, such as depression, anger, anxiety, and hostility, to be detrimental to cardiovascular health. Less is known about how positive psychological characteristics could make the heart healthy. Harvard researchers just finished the largest review on this topic to date. They found that positive psychological well-being appears to reduce the risk of heart attacks, strokes, and other cardiovascular events.
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More than 2,200 Americans die of heart disease every day. That is one death every 39 seconds. Stroke accounts for about one of every 18 U.S. deaths.
The researchers explained that not being negative is not the same thing as being positive. They found that factors such as optimism, life satisfaction, and happiness are associated with reduced risk of heart disease. For example, the most optimistic individuals had a 50% reduced risk of having a heart attack or stroke compared to less optimistic peers.
This comes after reviewing more than 200 studies published. It shows that psychological assets, like optimism and positive emotion, could protect the heart from what ails it. And, for those already with a major heart problem, staying positive appear to slow the progression of disease.
They also found that people with a sense of well-being engaged in healthier behaviors such as exercising, eating a balanced diet, and getting sufficient sleep. In addition, greater well-being was related to better biological function, such as lower blood pressure, healthier lipid (blood fat) profiles, and normal body weight.
Optimism. Happiness. Satisfaction. These are some of the best natural remedies for your heart out there. See if you can’t boost your life full of them.