Lonely Middle-Aged Men Are at Higher Risk of Cancer

A recent study by researchers from the University of Eastern Finland has found yet another health risk associated with loneliness. A report by Consumer Affairs said that several studies that link loneliness to mental and physical health exist.

A growing number of studies implicating loneliness

From the study’s findings, loneliness can be linked to higher cancer risk in middle-aged men. Siiri-Liisi Kraav, a researcher, says that based on studies conducted in recent years, it has been approximated that loneliness can be a health risk as potent as smoking or being overweight. The researcher added that their findings supported the notion that studies on this particular issue need to be increased.

To better understand loneliness as a health risk, the researchers evaluated the findings from 2750 men who were part of the study. The study titled  Loneliness and social Isolation increase cancer incidence in a cohort of middle-aged Finnish men was published in Psychiatry Research. This study began in the 1980s, and the researchers have kept tabs on the men analyzing their long-term health results.

The researchers examined different aspects of the participants’ health that could stimulate cancer risks, such as BMI, quality of sleep, and age. According to the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, BMI is a body fat measurement comprising of height and weight and applies to adults, both women, and men.

Among the findings of the study was that loneliness increased cancer risk by 10%. The researchers also found that marital status played a pivotal role in these cancer cases.

The study further revealed that men who were divorced, widowed or unmarried had a higher probability of cancer mortality than those who are married. Additionally, men who were uncoupled when they were diagnosed with cancer displayed lower health results than their counterparts who were in relationships.

Increased awareness

Krav explains that there is an increasing awareness of the health impacts of loneliness. Therefore, the researcher adds that it is vital to investigate the devices used by loneliness to cause adverse health effects. With this information, it would be easier to lessen loneliness and the dangers it poses.

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