Study Says Happiness Can Help With Heart Problems

LONDON (AP) - A new study suggests that people can do more to
avoid a heart attack than eat right and exercise. They can also try
to be happy.

That's according to researchers at Columbia University. In 1995,
they rated the happiness levels of more than 1,700 adults in Canada
who didn't have heart problems.

cardiac trouble. They found happier people were less likely to have
had heart problems.

Some experts say happiness itself can result in a healthier
heart, compared to other emotions such as stress or depression.
Stress often releases hormones that can damage heart muscle. It can
also cause blood vessels to open too much, allowing plaque buildups
that can clog arteries.

As for people who are naturally grumpy, the study author says
they should at least try "acting" happy.

The study is being published online Thursday in the European Heart Journal.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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