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Optimism and reduced risk of stroke risk (USA)

August 25, 2011

A study by researchers at the University of Michigan has found that optimism is associated with a reduced incidence of stroke.

Researchers examined data from the Health and Retirement Study that includes 6,044 American adults aged 50 years or more and followed them for two years. Data was adjusted for chronic illness, self-rated health, as well as sociodemographic, behavioural, biological and psychological factors.

Results indicate that higher optimism is associated with a lower risk of stroke and may play an important role in diminishing the incidence among older adults. While researchers do not speculate on the reason why this association exists, their analysis supports the view that positive thinking and better health are related.

To read the abstract “Dispositional Optimism Protects Older Adults From Stroke”, go to the online version of the Journal of the American Stroke Association at

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