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Optimism Can Prevent Strokes?


According to a new study, people who are more optimistic than their counterparts have a reduced risk of having a stroke than pessimistic people.

"Optimism protects against stroke," said researcher Eric Kim, a doctoral student at the University of Michigan. While it is not cause-and-effect thing, Kim and his colleagues did find an important correlation.

In order to come to their conclusions, Kim and his researchers observed data from the Health and Retirement Study – an nationally representative sample of U.S. adults over the age of 50. In those results the researchers looked for standard optimism tests for over 6,000 men and women. During the follow-up examinations, 88 strokes were recorded.

Upon review, it was deduced that optimism reduced stroke risk by about nine percent among the participants. To keep the results accurate, researchers adjusted for factors like smoking, alcohol use, race, gender, marital status, blood pressure, chronic illness, mental illness, body mass index and level of physical activity.

"In a similar way that depression can impact functioning, we think optimism can as well," Kim made sure to note.

"Optimism isn't just the lack of anxiety or depression.”
The results from this study were published in the July 21 online issue of Stroke.

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