Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Optimism Associated With Lowered Risk Of Dying From Heart Disease

Date:
November 4, 2004
Source:
Journal Of The American Medical Association
Summary:
Patients who described themselves as highly optimistic had lower risks of all-cause death, and lower rates of cardiovascular death than those with high levels of pessimism, according to an article in the November issue of The Archives of General Psychiatry, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

CHICAGO – Patients who described themselves as highly optimistic had lower risks of all-cause death, and lower rates of cardiovascular death than those with high levels of pessimism, according to an article in the November issue of The Archives of General Psychiatry, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

According to the article, major depression is a known risk factor for cardiovascular death. However, the relationship between optimism and death has not received as much attention.

Erik J. Giltay, M.D., Ph.D., of Psychiatric Center GGZ Delfland, Delft, the Netherlands, and colleagues analyzed data from the Arnhem Elderly Study to test whether participants who are optimistic live longer than patients who are pessimistic.

Participants were aged 65 to 85 years (999 men and women) and completed a 30-item questionnaire on health, self-respect, morale, optimism and relationships. Of the participants, 941 (466 men, 475 women) had complete information on questions regarding optimism, and these patients were divided into four groups based on their level of optimism.

Over the follow up period of 9.1 years (1991 to 2001), there were 397 deaths. Compared to participants who reported a high level of pessimism, participants reporting high levels of optimism had a 55 percent lower risk of death from all causes, and a 23 percent lower risk of cardiovascular death. The researchers also found an inverse relationship between level of optimism and risk of death, with a stronger protective effect of optimism in men than women for all-cause mortality, but not cardiovascular mortality.

"In conclusion, we found that the trait of optimism was an important long-term determinant of all-cause and cardiovascular mortality in elderly subjects independent of sociodemographic characteristics and cardiovascular risk factors," the authors write. "A predisposition toward optimism seemed to provide a survival benefit in elderly subjects with relatively short life expectancies otherwise."

"Our results, combined with the finding that hopelessness was associated with an increased incidence or progression of disease, suggest that dispositional optimism affects the progression of cardiovascular disease," the researchers state. "Although optimism reduces the risk of cardiovascular death through mechanisms largely unaffected by baseline values of physical activity, obesity, smoking, hypertension, and lipid profile, pessimistic subjects may be more prone to changes across time in risk factors that affect the progression of cardiovascular disease (e.g., the development of smoking habits, obesity, or hypertension) than optimistic subjects. Dispositional optimism may also be associated with better coping strategies that are adhered to throughout life."

###

(Arch Gen Psychiatry. 2004;61:1126-1135. Available post-embargo at archgenpsychiatry.com)

Editor's Note: This study was part of the research program Lifestyle and Health in the Elderly supported by the Dutch Ministry of Health, Welfare, and Sport (The Hague, the Netherlands).


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Journal Of The American Medical Association. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Journal Of The American Medical Association. "Optimism Associated With Lowered Risk Of Dying From Heart Disease." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 4 November 2004. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2004/11/041104011325.htm>.
Journal Of The American Medical Association. (2004, November 4). Optimism Associated With Lowered Risk Of Dying From Heart Disease. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 20, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2004/11/041104011325.htm
Journal Of The American Medical Association. "Optimism Associated With Lowered Risk Of Dying From Heart Disease." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2004/11/041104011325.htm (accessed August 20, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Ebola-Hit Sierra Leone's Freetown a City on Edge

Ebola-Hit Sierra Leone's Freetown a City on Edge

AFP (Aug. 19, 2014) Residents of Sierra Leone's capital voice their fears as the Ebola virus sweeps through west Africa. Duration: 00:56 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
101-Year-Old Working Man Has All The Advice You Need

101-Year-Old Working Man Has All The Advice You Need

Newsy (Aug. 19, 2014) Herman Goldman has worked at the same lighting store for almost 75 years. Find out his secrets to a happy, productive life. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Researcher Testing on-Field Concussion Scanners

Researcher Testing on-Field Concussion Scanners

AP (Aug. 19, 2014) Four Texas high school football programs are trying out an experimental system designed to diagnose concussions on the field. The technology is in response to growing concern over head trauma in America's most watched sport. (Aug. 19) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
American Ebola Patient Apparently Improving, Outbreak Is Not

American Ebola Patient Apparently Improving, Outbreak Is Not

Newsy (Aug. 19, 2014) Nancy Writebol, an American missionary who contracted Ebola, is apparently getting better, according to her husband. The outbreak, however, is not. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins