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Study suggests divorce increases the risk of dementia

I find it difficult to write on divorce, because there can be legitimate reasons for a marriage breakdown and sometimes a person has no choice because one partner wants out of the marriage.

But we are living in a society where marriage is increasingly devalued and looked upon as being as disposable as a paper cup.

But the Bible states that God hates divorce and warns of it being a violent act as it involves separating two people who in Biblical terms were one flesh (Mark 10:8).

“For the Lord God of Israel says
That He hates divorce,
For it covers one’s garment with violence,”
Says the Lord of hosts.
“Therefore take heed to your spirit,
That you do not deal treacherously.”

Malachi 2:16 NKJV

And this cutting apart has the potential to harm all involved including children (here, here and here) and the couple divorcing.

Aside from the negative emotional and economic consequences of divorce, studies also reveal divorce can physically impact the health of the people involved.

And this was the conclusion of yet another study that provided a particular warning for men.

According to an article in the Daily Mail, Michigan State University researchers concluded that divorce people face an increased risk of dementia, the hideous memory robbing disorder.

In their study, they followed 15,379 people, 52 years of age and older, who were separated into groups based on their marital status that included all ranges of the spectrum from married to divorced to widowed to cohabiting.

For 14 years (2000 to 2014), the people in the study group were contacted every two years to determine their cognitive status.

The results showed that there was an increased risk of dementia for all unmarried people in the study group, but particularly divorced men.

In fact, the risk of dementia for divorced men was double the rate of their married counterparts. Their risk rate was even higher than that of divorced women which was unusual because overall women with dementia outnumber men by a two to one ratio.

Loneliness and the lack of financial resources are considered risk factors for dementia. Yet despite this, the researchers noted that people who were cohabiting, and therefor not affected by loneliness and were on equal financial footing with married couples, had a higher risk of dementia than those who were married.

This led the study’s lead researcher Dr Hui Liu to conclude:

“Marital status is an important but overlooked social/risk protective factor for dementia.”


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