Healthy heart if you have good relations with neighbors

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Carlos Laforet Coll
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Having good relationships with neighbors reduces the risk of heart attack by 67%. According to research conducted by the University of Michigan

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In the past, dealings with neighbors they were fundamental, we knew each other, we helped each other by lending some tools or food that we had temporarily lacked, we had a coffee together, we chatted. Today all this, especially in big cities, tends to disappear and could be affected not only by our sociability but also ours heart!

According to a study carried out on a very large sample, having good neighborly relationships would allow the heart to stay healthier enough to reduce the risk of suffering from heart attacks.

These are the results of a research published in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health and carried out by the University of Michigan. A team of scientists analyzed the data they concerned over 5000 people over 50 (the average was about 70 years and most of the sample were women) monitored for a period of 4 years and with a history free from cardiovascular problems.

Each participant filled out a questionnaire relating to their satisfaction with neighborhood life in which they also had to indicate the relationships with their neighborhood, evaluating the degree of trust they had towards the people with whom they shared common spaces. 148 people had had a heart attack during the time frame. It was thus noted that the people who had claimed to have good relationships with neighbors showed a 67% lower chance of having a heart attack.

It is difficult to understand the mechanisms of this phenomenon. However, the researchers are convinced that: "Having good neighbors and the feeling of contact with others in the local community can help limit an individual's risk of heart attack." This, among other hypotheses, could be due to the fact that cohesion with one's neighborhood is capable of encourage physical activities such as that of walk together.

Obviously, these are not definitive conclusions but, given what the team noted, "if future research replicates these findings, more neighborhood-level approaches to public health that help social cohesion may be justified." In fact, if you think about it for a moment, it might not seem so strange that the environment around us (and therefore also the people who make it up) can positively influence our health or not.

Read also:

- Streetbank: the exchange takes place between neighbors

- Toctofono: the device for the neighbors of the future

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