What’s below may seem like a couple of silly questions. But there’s new evidence they could save your life.
If your doctor doesn’t ask them on your next visit… find a new doctor.
We’re not kidding.
The questions are simple.
“Do you have someone to talk to when you need it?” and “Do you feel alone sometimes even though you want to be with someone?”
Answering those two questions with the truth could reveal your odds of dying from heart disease.
In fact, the wrong answer could link you to twice the risk of dying an early death.
You see, the results of a brand-new study were released over the weekend. They reinforce what we’ve long been saying – that good Connections are vitally important.
Loneliness, the docs found, is directly linked to heart disease and stroke.
The study took a look at folks with existing heart issues. It gathered more than 13,000 patients and then rated the quality of their social networks.
They used the two questions from above.
The results were quite clear.
“Loneliness is a strong predictor of premature death, worse mental health and lower quality of life in patients with cardiovascular disease,” said head researcher Anne Vinggaard Christensen, “and a much stronger predictor than living alone, in both men and women.”
It’s that last line that caught our attention.
That’s the interesting thing about this study. The folks in charge specifically did not correlate the idea of living alone with loneliness. And on the other hand, they didn’t label folks who live with other folks as not lonely.
It’s all about a person’s social network.
Folks who had strong support networks… a group of trusted friends they could rely on… or a group of folks with common interests… showed significantly better results than the folks who had fewer Connections in their lives.
And, again, it doesn’t matter whether we live with those folks or not.
But as we’ve reported so many times before, our modern culture is failing us on this front.
Instead of making strong Connections outside of our home, people are turning to the web for their socialization.
It’s doubly unhealthy.
Offline and Alive
All sorts of studies have recently shown the nasty effects of too much time on social sites. It’s why depression and suicide are on the rise. (Not to mention ignorance and political intolerance.)
One of our long-term goals with this passion project is to take direct aim at this problem. We want to create a conduit to bring like-minded men together… creating serious bonds that not only build wealth and success but, as we’re quickly seeing, can save lives.
In many ways, we’ve already done it. But there’s plenty more to do.
This is a serious issue that gets virtually no attention.
Like we said, if you’re not hearing about it from your doc, you may want to shop around.
“We live in a time when loneliness is more present, and health providers should take this into account when assessing risk,” said the folks behind the latest research. “Our study shows that asking two questions about social support provides a lot of information about the likelihood of having poor health outcomes.”
Our Triad has the power to change and shape lives.
We spend a lot of time discussing our Liberty and our Know-How. But we can’t overlook our Connections.
The research is clear.
Whom we know dictates how long we live.