Attitude? A Good One Prevents Strokes!
Posted On Jul 22, 2011
Do you believe that a positive attitude can help prevent a stroke? If so, you’re right, at least according to a report released yesterday by the American Heart Association. In a two-year study of 6,044 American adults over age 50, the AHA observed that those who were more optimistic had a much better chance of avoiding a stroke. Patients rated their optimism on a 16-point scale; each point increase in optimism corresponded to a 9 percent decrease in the risk of stroke. (Optimism was defined as “the expectation that more good things, rather than bad, will happen.”) While the protective effect of a positive outlook could be due to behavioral choices—basically people taking better care of themselves—researchers saw evidence that “positive thinking might have a strictly biological impact as well.” Nothing like the will to live! Stroke, fyi, is the third leading cause of death in the U.S., right after heart disease and cancer.