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Parenting is Good for Women – Reduces Blood Pressure

Hypertension or High Blood Pressure is responsible for 3 out of 5 deaths from heart failures in women of the United States. It claims the lives of nearly 500,000 women every year. Most of the women are ignorant from the fact that they are patients of hypertension. Lack of awareness and common misconception that men are prone to high blood pressure are the culprits for this state.

Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Indiana, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Virginia are the 11 states considered as the Stroke belt states of this country. Though African-American women living in the south east of United States are prone to develop hypertension more than any other group, people living in these 11 states have high rate of heart attacks from hypertension.

Factors which contribute to developing this menace are Obesity, Smoking, Diabetes, High salt intake, Sedentary life style and Lack of exercise, Alcohol consumption and Eating fatty and fast foods. Heredity, Menopause and usage of oral contraceptives can also cause hypertension in women.

Research conducted at the Brigham Young University (dated January 2009), reports that parenting is beneficial for women as it can reduce the blood pressure levels. The research study is one of its kinds and proves that social factors and health do influence each other.

The study included 198 adults as participants. A blood pressure measuring device was attached to their body and hidden by their clothes. The device measured blood pressure at random during different times of the day while the parents were involved in their day-to-day life activities. The study found that the upper mark of blood pressure in parents was low by 4.5 points than non-parents. The lower mark of blood pressure was also found to be low by 3 points in parents. In this way, parents were found to have lower blood pressure than non-parents.

The effect of parenting on blood pressure was found to be more strong on women. Mothers had their upper mark of blood pressure low by 12 points and lower mark of blood pressure low by 7 points. According researcher Dr. Julianne Holt-Lunstad, Psychologist at the Brigham Young University, the study once again established the fact that happiness in relationships leads to good health and stress proves to be counter productive always.

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