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Emory study finds mental health and heart disease tightly linked

"We seriously underestimate the connection between mental health and cardiovascular disease, especially for post-menopausal women. We are not doing as well in treating mental health on par with other risk factors," says Keyes, an associate professor of sociology who conducted the study in conjunction with Emory's Rollins School of Public Health.

Keyes' study used data from a representative sample of American adults between the ages of 25 and 74 collected in 1995 from the MacArthur Foundation's "Midlife in the United States" survey. About 12 percent of adults reported some form of cardiovascular diseases. Independent of mental health status, risk for any cardiovascular disease increased with age and as education decreased, and the risk was higher among males, married adults and unemployed adults.

Keyes is lead editor of "Flourishing: Positive Psychology and the Life Well-Lived," published in 2002 by the American Psychological Association, and is co-editor of "Well-Being: Positive Development Throughout the Life Course," published in 2003 by Lawrence Erlbaum Associates Inc.


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Contact: Beverly Cox Clark
bclark2@emory.edu
404-712-8780
Emory University Health Sciences Center
14-May-2004


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