Singletons are becoming just as healthy as their married counterparts, according to new research.
Previous studies have highlighted the health benefits associated with getting married, but the latest study by Michigan State University found that such views may be misguided.
Since the 1970s sociologists have pointed to the positive physical effects of getting married – especially among men.
But looking at data from the National Health Interview Survey, researchers found the gap is closing between the self-reported health of married people and that of singletons.
Hui Liu, assistant professor of sociology at Michigan State University and lead researcher of the study, said: "Married people are still healthier than unmarried people but the gap between the married and never-married is closing, especially for men."
According to the researchers 'never-marrieds' now have better access to social resources which can help them and are not dependent on a spouse to fulfil those needs.
The US government has adopted schemes to encourage marriage to improve health – particularly among ethnic minorities and less privileged groups, which are seen to be less likely to tie the knot.
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