Loneliness boosts heart disease risk among older women, study finds

Social isolation and loneliness may increase the risk of heart disease by as much as 27 percent among older women, according to findings recently published in JAMA

The study was conducted from March 2011 through March 2019 and included nearly 58,000 women aged 65 to 99 who had no history of myocardial infarction, stroke or coronary heart disease, according to findings published Feb. 2. 

Social isolation was associated with an 8 percent higher risk for heart disease and loneliness 5 percent. Among women who reported greater levels of both feelings, the risk was 13 to 27 percent higher compared to women experiencing lower levels of social isolation and loneliness. 

More than one-fourth of adults 65 and older in the U.S. are socially isolated, while a third of adults 45 or older report being lonely, researchers said. 

Social isolation is defined as the "objective measure of social interactions and relationships," while loneliness is "the subjective feeling of being socially isolated." 

To view the full study, click here

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