Video: Marriage Strengthens Bones - Only In Men Who Get Married After 25
The study results from UCLA were published in the journal Osteoporosis International. Men who marry for the first time after 25 years and are satisfied with the quality of marriage have the strongest bones (in terms of the spine).
Also, men whose relationships are stable and have never been broken before - be it marriage or just a reliable long-term relationship - also have stronger skeletons.
This “25-year rule” does not apply to women. However, scientists have found that if a girl receives emotional support from a regular partner, then her bones are also stronger.
This is the first time in history that the quality of marriage has been linked to bone health, says Carolyn Crandall, professor at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA.
"Very little is known about the effects of social factors - other than socioeconomic factors - on bone health," says Carolyn. "Good health depends not only on good habits and lifestyle - like diet and smoking cessation - but also on completely different things: history of marriage and the quality of relationships."
In their work, the scientists used data from the Midlife in the United States (MIDUS) study. Participants between the ages of 25 and 75 were interviewed and vetted in 1995–96, and again, during MIDUS II, in 2004–05. The participants were 294 men and 339 women. All of them passed the test and standard densitometry.
The relationship between marital reliability and bone strength - scientists argue - is common in the spine, but not in the femur (probably due to differences in bone composition).
The least healthy bones were found in men who had never married, survived a divorce, or were widowed. In women, poor bone quality is associated with dissatisfaction with marriage or any other form of long-term relationship.