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Divorce can lead to healthier lifestyle for some older women

Many studies have been conducted to determine whether the end of a marriage is detrimental. But until recently, no one study has focused on whether a divorce can be beneficial to one's health. While many Georgia families may have had some emotional adjustments to make after a divorce, some researchers claim there may be a health benefit for some of these women.

The recently published study followed three categories of women between the ages of 50 to 79 for a period of 36 months. They were broken down into a married but then divorced category, a single to married group and a category of women whose status remained unchanged. The researchers noted several areas to study, including weight and waist in inches, diet, smoking, and exercise levels. The women whose relationship status remained constant did show some gain in weight but no other significant changes in health habits.

The women who married did gain more weight than either of the other groups. They also tended to exercise less. On the other hand, the participants who divorced experienced the most weight loss and increased physical activity. They also improved eating habits and appeared to take better care of their health. The divorced women were more likely to return to a previous smoking habit.

This study appears to highlight that older women who have gone through a divorce appear to spend more time taking care of their physical health. The researchers did not theorize why these women fared slightly better overall, though it may suggest that life transitions can lead to positive health habits regardless of age. While it is unlikely an older couple would seek a divorce for the supposed health benefits, it may enable these women to remain more positive throughout the process. Georgia residents who find themselves facing this type of marital change may elect to consult a family law attorney in order to make the best choices for their own well-being in the future.

Source:, "Weight loss often follows divorce for older women", Alexis Blue, Feb. 8, 2017

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