"The reasons appear to be related to women's larger social networks," she said. "Women are more likely than men to have a large and diverse group of friends and relatives with whom they share and feel close to. For men, the wife is typically the primary person who serves as a confidant, so that it is often true that a man without a partner has no confidant."
The association seen between marriage and survival in this study does not prove a cause-and-effect relationship.
For more on life expectancy, visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
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