Prescription: Turn that frown upside-down - Macleans.ca

Prescription: Turn that frown upside-down

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Researchers are now saying that some of women’s greatest health challenges can be remedied with one thing: happiness. Simple enough, right?

A team of researchers at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Israel, questioned 255 women with breast cancer about their well-being and their levels of happiness, optimism, anxiety and depression before they were diagnosed. They studied them against 367 healthy control subjects. The study, published in the journal BMC Cancer, concluded that those with a positive outlook on life were better protected against the disease.

This comes on the heels of another recent study published in the British Medical Journal that certain common infertility treatments don’t work. Some doctors suggested couples would be far better off taking therapeutic measures…to stay positive.

I have no doubt that a person’s mental state can have serious implications for her health. It just makes for a tricky course of treatment. Telling a woman that her anxiety and depression are making her infertile and cancer-prone is like telling a grieving person that all that darn grieving is prolonging their grief.