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Lonely hearts are not healthy hearts

13th July 2006

Living alone is bad for your health, scientists have claimed.

According to new research, those who live alone are twice as likely to develop heart disease, suffer from angina, or have a heart attack as those who have company.

Scientists in Denmark have concluded that lone habitation is a more important factor for heart heath than poor educational attainment or suffering from a low-income pension, although it is less important than age.

The paper, published in the British Medical Journal, found that, while lone women above the age of 60 and lone men above the age of 50 constitute ten per cent of the Danish population, they are twice as likely to suffer from acute coronary syndrome.

This is a health condition which encompasses those who have suffered a heart attack and those who are at a heightened risk of severe angina or a sudden cardiac death.

One possible explanation for the findings is that unhealthy habits and characteristics likely to increase risk are more prevalent among those living alone, for example smoking, obesity, fewer visits to the doctor and high cholesterol levels.