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People who fall in love and settle down in their 20s sleep better in middle age and suffer less stress, according to a new study.
Researchers say that their findings offer a possible explanation for how marriage reduces the risk of a premature death.
Immune - System - Bacteria - Infections
It is already known that just cuddling a loved one improves the immune system by exposing it to more bacteria, protecting against infections.
And regular sex works muscles you wouldn't otherwise use and increases blood flow.
Research - Team - University - Minnesota - Relationships
Now a research team at the University of Minnesota has found those who have positive, lasting relationships in their early adulthood experience less anxiety after the age of 32.
That, in turn, predicts better quality of sleep by the time they are 37, according to the findings published in the journal Personal Relationships.
Study - Author - Chloe - Huelsnitz - PhD
Study lead author Chloe Huelsnitz, a PhD candidate at the University of Minnesota, said sleep is a shared behavior between couples.
Relationships boost long term health by getting 'under the skin' - literally, she said.
Body - Literature - Ways - Partners - Levels
It adds to a growing body of literature showing one of the important ways partners impact us is by lowering levels of life stress.
'The current study is the first to demonstrate stress exposure as a mechanism linking relationship effectiveness to an important health outcome - sleep quality - over time,' Huelsnitz said.
Body - Research - Relationships - Predictors - Health
'A large body of research has consistently found that romantic relationships are important predictors of long-term health and well-being.
'Although the behavioral processes linking relationships and health outcomes are not fully understood, sleep is a shared behavior in many romantic relationships, and it is a strong contender for how relationships 'get under the skin' to affect long-term health outcomes.
Research - Support - Stress - Exposure - Reduction
'The current research found support for a stress exposure reduction model of relationship effectiveness and sleep and added to a growing body of literature showing that one of the important...
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