Marriages are indeed made in heaven. Now, even medical studies have argued so. According to a new study, if one's spouse is stressed in life, then nobody but you might want to keep a watch on your waistline.
Kira Birditt, a research associate professor at the University of Michigan Institute for Social Research, has said that the stress level of one's partner and not that of himself or herself could lead to one's gaining weight.
So, be doubly careful about your partner's health - both physical and mental - if you want to stay fit yourself.
Birditt and her colleagues have indeed found that it is the quality of marriage which plays a role in both the partners' gaining calories.
The study hasn't exactly established the association between the two things. May be more research is what is required on this; but based on the study, it is being said that stress-management programmes should involve the duo rather than one of the partners, so that the collective health is looked after.
Other Findings Of The Study:
The other important thing this study implies is that it makes an individual's health an issue of collective interest. If one of the partners is suffering, there will be an urgency to resolve the problem, so that the entire family doesn't get affected.
If one's spouse or partner is having a stress problem, he or she could be more vulnerable to serious ailments like heart diseases and diabetes.
In the study that took over four years, 2000 elderly married couples were asked about their waist size, quality of their marriage and stress levels. The stress level included the mental unhappiness related to financial problems, work-related difficulties, too-much caring, etc.
It was found in the beginning of the study that 6 out of 10 participants had their waistlines in the unhealthy zone, while after four years, it was seen that 9 per cent of the participants had a 10 per cent increase in their waistlines. And the increase was not just a small one, she said.
Birditt said while men were more than twice as likely to experience an increase in waistline when their wives underwent a stress, the women were 1.6 times more likely to see an increase in the waist size when their husbands faced a stress in life.
But what could be the reason for this unique connection?
According to Birditt, people who are distressed in their marriage eat more to feel connected to each other, so that their stress gets reduced.
The researchers agreed that married couples facing stress can join the stress-management programme together, so that both can gain in the ultimate count.