Quite a few things can be bad for your heart including untreated high blood pressure, elevated lipids, diabetes, 0besity and lack of exercise.  And it turns out that you can add a bad marriage to the list.

A recent study involving 1000 older married couples from ages 57-85 revealed that an unhappy marriage increased the risk of heart disease. Women were more affected than their male counterparts. Why? Perhaps because many guys care more about how their favorite team is faring than about marital issues. Women, besides knowing what a relationship is, seem to internalize feelings more.

There is definitely a connection with your mental well being and heart disease and probably a host of other bad things such as cancer as well. In fact, it is well known that depression, left untreated, will increase your risk of heart disease. Many cardiologists will prescribe antidepressants to depressed cardiac patients, along with blood pressure and lipid lowering drugs.

What would be nice to see is if this trend also holds true for younger couples.While it is true that younger couples will overall have a lower risk of heart disease just because of their youth, it may also be true that they may be setting themselves up for early onset of heart problems. A properly designed study would help determine whether this is true.

Bottom line: It is very important to seek out marital counseling, no matter what your ages are and how long you have been married. Some things just don’t fix themselves without outside assistance.