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Why self-care is especially important for women both during and after a divorce

These days, it seems that every time you pick up a magazine or turn on the television there's an article or segment about how to reduce stress in one's life. While it's virtually impossible to avoid stress altogether, researchers have found that when an individual is under stress, he or she excretes elevated levels of the stress hormone cortisol. Overtime, increased and elevated levels of cortisol have been linked to a myriad of adverse health side-effects including heart attacks.

Given the link between stress and heart problems, the findings of a recent Duke University study, that also points to a link between divorce and heart attacks, aren't too surprising. According to the findings, women who experienced a divorce at some point in their lives "were 24 percent more likely to get a heart attack over women who did not."

In cases where a woman was divorced two or more times, her chances of suffering a heart attack increased to 77 percent. Interestingly researchers noted that, at a 30 percent increased likelihood, men who experienced two or more divorces during their lifetime were significantly less likely than their female counterparts to suffer a heart attack.

While the results of this study are noteworthy, the stresses associated with staying in an unhappy marriage are also likely damaging not only to an individual's physical health, but also to his or her mental and emotional health. Everyone deserves to be happy in life and while divorce can certainly be stressful, it also provides an individual the opportunity to start a new and happier chapter in his or her life.

Source: Bustle.com, "Divorced Women Are More Likely To Have A Heart Attack, Says New Study, As If Ending A Marriage Isn't Stressful Enough," Kristine Fellizar, April 15, 2015

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