This is not a trick question. If the answer is “no,” come see me, not a hit man. If the answer is “yes,” read on. There is important scientific information available to you.

Fact, based on a number of research studies, married men are healthier than man who are single, divorced or widowed. The “marriage benefit” both protects men’s health and also prolongs their lives. Three factors are listed as the main reasons for such an outcome.

TOUCH: Holding hands, hugging, embracing and cuddling warm the heart and lower stress. Dr. James Coan showed in his research that such touch actually reduced agitation in the hypothalamus area of the brain, which controls the release of stress hormones. These stress hormones turn off our immune function thus leading to a weakened immune system. A weakened immune system invites poor health.

EMOTIONAL SUPPORT: Men tend to be inattentive to, and deny, their physical symptoms. Attentive loving spouses pay attention to their husbands and nudge and nurse them toward better health. Studies show that husbands with loving supportive wives get sick less often and, when ill, recover faster than husbands who did not have such a caring companion.

SEX MATTERS: A man who has a secure marriage and continues to be sexually active succumbs to illness less often and heals from wounds and surgery faster. According to Dr. Harry Lodge, the emotional brain circuit sits next to, and is connected to, the brain circuits that control heart rate, blood pressure, and how much adrenaline one secretes.

In a decade long longitudinal study done at Queen’s University it was found that men who had sex three or more times a week had a 50 percent reduced risk of heart attacks or stroke. And those men who reported the most orgasms had a death rate of one-half that of the less sexually active men. The research did not indicate how many of those orgasms involved intercourse. (A woman’s heart is also protected by sensual affection because of the release of the hormone oxytocin and the resulting lower blood pressure.)

In summary, scientific studies show that long-married men, in marriages with the above present elements, live up to five years longer than their contemporaries. Such men have, to quote Dr. Lodge, a luminescence to them — a deep, calm, subtle glow.”

I am aware that this article will be brought to the attention of some women by their “ailing” men, hidden by some reluctant women, and on the pillow of men with sensually deprived wives. I present these facts in hopes that most wives want to do all they can to assure that they have a long life with a healthy man who appreciates such a loving spouse!



Dr. Stathas is a counseling psychologist, licensed marriage and family therapist, in the Lake Oconee area. He is the founder of the Stathas Life Development Center. He can be reached at 706-473-1780. E-mail:Stathas@plantationcable.net. Web site: drstathas.googlepages.com

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