Studies of this phenomenon are coming in from around the world.
For instance, data from 3 million participants in a Brigham Young University study found that living on your own can increase your risk of premature death by 32 percent while loneliness raises the risk by 26 percent and isolation increases it by 29 percent, the Huffington Post reported.
A separate University of Chicago study explained that loneliness raises your levels of cortisol, the stress hormone, and that can lead to increased risk of stroke and heart attack.
In addition, researchers at the University of York in Great Britain, according to a CNN report, combined data from earlier studies done in North America, Europe, Asia and Australia to determine that loneliness and social isolation are equal to anxiety when it comes to causing heart disease and they are as much at fault as work stress when it comes to inducing a stroke. Smoking cigarettes remains a higher risk for these health problems, however.
Researchers suggest that people who live alone have worse diets; don’t exercise or sleep as much; and are less likely to pay attention to their medical problems, the CNN report continued. In addition, the stress and sadness of isolation drives up blood pressure, leading to heart disease and shortening life spans.