More generally, both loneliness and social isolation are more common in men than in women. If one smokes and is obese, the risk of heart failure is further increased
Both social isolation and especially loneliness are associated with an increased risk of heart failure, a major new Sino-British scientific study shows. Both factors play a role, but the most decisive is the extent to which one feels lonely, regardless of how lonely one really is.
Previous studies have shown that social isolation and loneliness are important cardiovascular risk factors. The new research highlights this correlation especially in the case of heart failure. Social isolation refers to the objective state of not having social contacts and relationships, while loneliness refers to the distressing feeling of being unable to engage in real social interaction, even when others are present.
The researchers, led by Dr. Zhihui Zhang of Guangzhou Medical University, who published in the journal “JACC: Heart Failure” of the American College of Cardiology, analyzed British medical records for about 465,000 middle-aged and elderly people (average 57 years) over a period of at least 12 years, of which almost 12,900 had been diagnosed with heart failure.
Loneliness and social isolation were found to increase the risk of heart failure by 15% to 20%. But social isolation in itself constitutes a risk factor only when the feeling of loneliness is absent. In other words, if someone is socially isolated and at the same time feels lonely, the latter is more important in terms of the likelihood of developing heart failure. Loneliness also increases the relative risk even if one has no social isolation at all.
More generally, both loneliness and social isolation are more common in men than in women. If one smokes and is obese, the risk of heart failure is further increased.
“The findings show that the impact of subjective loneliness is more important than that of objective social isolation. Our results show that when loneliness is present, social isolation is no longer important for the occurrence of heart failure. Loneliness is stronger cause of psychological stress than social isolation and is common in people who are hostile or have stressful social relationships,” said Dr. Zhang.
See the scientific publication HERE.
Read the News today and get the latest news.
Follow Skai.gr on Google News and be the first to know all the news.
I have worked in the news industry for over 10 years. I have a vast amount of experience in covering health news. I am also an author at News Bulletin 247. I am highly experienced and knowledgeable in this field. I am a hard worker and always deliver quality work. I am a reliable source of information and always provide accurate information.