Falling out with your other half significantly increases the risk of angina.
It is a warning to bear in mind if the Christmas dinner causes family tensions to boil over. For research has shown that nagging from a partner significantly increases the risk of suffering angina.
Dealing with worries from children and other family members also adds to the burden, but friends and neighbours pose little risk – unless they are argumentative.
One reason could be that stress levels rise due to the demands from family members, although individual personality could also play a role, the researchers said.
Angina is a pain or discomfort in the chest and is usually caused by coronary heart disease. Some might experience focused pain only in their arm, neck, stomach or jaw.
While many describe the feeling as severe tightness, others say it more resembles a dull ache.
The study, published yesterday in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health, involved more than 4,500 Danish men and women who were free from heart disease when the study began in 2000.
They were in two groups, one aged 40 at the start and the other 50, and were followed for six years.
A series of questions were asked about their health and the quality of their relationships with other people, including levels of demand on them, degree of worry they experienced, whether there were arguments and, if so, how often.
The results revealed that demands from a partner increased the risk of angina almost fourfold.
Dealing with issues from children and other family members more than doubled the risk.
Interestingly, if neighbours did prove to be argumentative, regular rows over the garden fence pushed up the angina risk by 60 per cent.
The authors, from the University of Copenhagen, concluded: ‘Excessive demands and serious worries from significant others seem to be important risk factors for development of angina.’
Overall, 9 per cent of the group developed angina and the results were similar for men and women. Risks were higher for the older age group and the more pressure a person was under, the more likely they were to suffer angina.
Previous studies have found that people who are happy in their social relationships tend to have better health.
In June, another study revealed wives spend 7,920 minutes a year nagging their husbands about chores, drinking and health issues. The survey, carried out by health campaign group Everyman, found nearly half of men ‘give in’ after an hour.
But while most men said they would never admit it, 83 per cent of those surveyed said they often thought their partner was in the right.
Via Daily Mail