People aged 65 and over are five times more likely to die if they are suffering from high levels of stress. Researchers from the Vrije Universiteit Medical Centre in Amsterdam studied 861 people aged 65 and over over a six-year period. They measured the levels of the stress hormone cortisol in people's urine at the start of the study and their health was monitored over the next six years. Those with the highest levels of cortisol in their bloodstream were five times more likely to die of cardiovascular disease than those with the lowest levels. The results took into account the influence of socioeconomic status, obesity, high blood pressure and smoking.
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