A new study says marriage is good for our health. Researchers said being married lowers levels of a stress hormone called cortisol. Researchers tested for cortisol in 572 adults on three different days. They found that the married people had less cortisol than people who were single, separated, divorced or widowed. The researchers said: "Married people tend to be healthier…but the mechanisms through which this occurs remain unclear."
Cortisol has different bodily functions. It regulates blood sugar, immune responses and inflammation. It increases the risk of heart disease and the chances of surviving cancer. High levels of cortisol are linked to conditions like anxiety and depression. A doctor said the research provided, "important insights into the way…our intimate social relationships can…influence our health". A researcher was excited to see how relationships influence health and disease.