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Good Neighbors May Mean Good Health

Posted 05/06/2015 | By HealthCorps

It’s not unusual when scouting out a neighborhood, to get the lay of the land in terms of school caliber, shopping and transit availability, and how far the local hospital is from the home you are considering. Well, a new study suggests that making sure you have really nice neighbors could support your heart health.

Having good neighbors and also feeling connected to them or your local community, may limit your heart attack risk. The authors of the study conclude that this feeling of closeness and support from neighbors may be an additional health protective feature, outside of family and close friend connections. Researchers have previously found that “cohesive behaviors” limit or decrease antisocial behaviors.

This study noted a 67% lower risk for heart attacks among 5,000 adults followed, who rated their neighborhoods as pleasant, compared to those who had less complimentary neighborhood ratings. Strong social ties have been linked to better health outcomes in other studies, so a tight-knit community would appear to have a similar impact.

-Amy Hendel, PA/HealthCoach

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