Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Health And Marriage: The Times They Are A Changin'

Date:
August 11, 2008
Source:
Michigan State University
Summary:
The health of people who never marry is improving, narrowing the gap with their wedded counterparts, according to new research that suggests the practice of encouraging marriage to promote health may be misguided.

The health of people who never marry is improving, narrowing the gap with their wedded counterparts, according to new research that suggests the practice of encouraging marriage to promote health may be misguided.

Hui Liu, assistant professor of sociology at Michigan State University and lead researcher on the project, said sociologists since the 1970s have emphasized that marriage benefits health more so for men than for women.

"Married people are still healthier than unmarried people," Liu said, "but the gap between the married and never-married is closing, especially for men."

The researchers analyzed National Health Interview Survey data from that period and found that while the self-reported health of married people is still better than that of the never-married, the gap has closed considerably.

The trend is due almost exclusively to a marked improvement in the self-reported health of never-married men. Liu said that may be partly because never-married men have greater access to social resources and support that historically were found in a spouse.

Further, the research shows that the health status of the never-married has improved for all race and gender groups examined: men, women, blacks and whites. (The health of married women also improved, while the health of married men remained stable.)

"Politicians and scholars continue to debate the value of marriage for Americans," the researchers write in the study, "with some going so far as to establish social programs and policies to encourage marriage among those socials groups less inclined to marry, particularly the poor and minorities."

But the research findings "highlight the complexity of this issue" and suggest that "encouraging marriage in order to promote health may be misguided."

In contrast, the self-reported health for the widowed, divorced and separated worsened from 1972 to 2003 relative to their married peers. This held true for both men and women, although the widening gaps between the married and the previously married groups are more pronounced for women than for men.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Michigan State University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Hui Liu and Debra Umberson. The Times They Are a Changin': Marital Status and Health Differentials from 1972 to 2003. Journal of Health and Social Behavior, September, 2008

Cite This Page:

Michigan State University. "Health And Marriage: The Times They Are A Changin'." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 11 August 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/08/080811070626.htm>.
Michigan State University. (2008, August 11). Health And Marriage: The Times They Are A Changin'. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/08/080811070626.htm
Michigan State University. "Health And Marriage: The Times They Are A Changin'." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/08/080811070626.htm (accessed October 21, 2014).

Share This



More Mind & Brain News

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Your Birth Season Might Determine Your Temperament

Your Birth Season Might Determine Your Temperament

Newsy (Oct. 20, 2014) A new study says the season you're born in can determine your temperament — and one season has a surprising outcome. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Court Ruling Means Kids' Online Activity Could Be On Parents

Court Ruling Means Kids' Online Activity Could Be On Parents

Newsy (Oct. 17, 2014) In a ruling attorneys for both sides agreed was a first of its kind, a Georgia appeals court said parents can be held liable for what kids put online. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
The Best Foods To Boost Your Mood

The Best Foods To Boost Your Mood

Buzz60 (Oct. 17, 2014) Feeling down? Reach for the refrigerator, not the medicine cabinet! TC Newman (@PurpleTCNewman) shares some of the best foods to boost your mood. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
You Can Get Addicted To Google Glass, Apparently

You Can Get Addicted To Google Glass, Apparently

Newsy (Oct. 15, 2014) Researchers claim they’ve diagnosed the first example of the disorder in a 31-year-old U.S. Navy serviceman. 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:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

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