Don't worry, be happy, because it might make you live longer says new research.
People with cheerful temperaments are significantly less likely to suffer a heart attack of coronary event, reveals new medical findings.
Previous research has shown that depressed or anxious people are more likely to die from heart attacks – however a new study carried out by Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine suggests that being cheerful, relaxed, energetic, and having a glass-half-full outlook on life can actually reduce people's risks.
'If you are by nature a cheerful person and look on the bright side of things, you are more likely to be protected from cardiac events,' says study lead author Lisa R. Yanek. 'A happier temperament has an actual effect on disease and you may be healthier as a result.'
But before you crack a smile and tell yourself the world is not such a bad place after all, Yanek warns that cheerful demeanours are likely to be part of the personality people are born with and not something that can be changed easily.
The study looked at 1,483 healthy siblings of people who had coronary events and followed them over the course of between five and 25 years. Among other research, participants were asked to fill out a well-being survey to gauge their mood, health concerns, stresses and general satisfaction with life.
Researchers found that those with a positive attitude had reduced the chances of having a coronary episode by between 30 and 50 per cent, with those in the highest risk bracket gaining the biggest reduction.
The results could also be linked to happier people taking better care of themselves and their diet. The findings will add to a growing area of research that is investigating the link between the mind and the body's health.
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