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Got Spouse?

Milk’s not the only thing that’s good for your bones. So is marriage.

Author Jacqueline Detwiler

fact

Have you hugged your husband or wife today? If so, you probably still have a strong back, and for that you should thank your significant other. According to a study from Dr. C.J. Crandall and colleagues at UCLA that recently appeared in Osteoporosis International, men who were in stable marriages they entered into after age 25 had greater bone densities in their lower backs than those who had previously been widowed, divorced or separated, or those who had never married. Meanwhile, women who reported better marital quality (e.g., my spouse “appreciates” me) had better bone density than those whose husbands were less supportive. Because the study is correlational, the authors cannot be totally certain that marriage is what causes increased bone density, but they think that if it does, it likely works by reducing stress hormones. Then again, your spouse and your chiropractor are probably the only people who care whether you sit up straight, and in most cases, only one of those people lives in your house.

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