Loneliness can damage your heart, cause premature death, study finds

June 29, 2018 - 3:30 am

KYW’s Medical Reports Sponsored By Independence Blue Cross. 

By Dr. Brian McDonough, Medical Editor

PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) -- It isn't talked about much, but our emotions can have a huge impact on our heart health. 

For decades we have known about broken heart syndrome in which heartbreak triggers sudden intense chest pain which can damage the cardiac muscle. During these episodes the heart beats regularly but nevertheless the damage is done. 

According to a new study presented at the European Society of Cardiology annual congress, loneliness is an independent predictor of early death. 

Over 13,000 people were studied in Denmark and having a feeling there was a person who cared about them was a critical lifestyle issue. The authors stressed that being lonely is quite different than being alone.

They were unable to compare this to other factors like smoking, exercise and dietary issues, but stressed the importance of not being lonely.