Psychological distress may increase your chances of dying from cancer.
Researchers interviewed 163,363 adults in England and Scotland using well-validated questionnaires on general and mental health. They followed the population in 16 studies conducted between 1994 and 2008.
After controlling for age, smoking, physical activity and other factors, they found that compared with those with the lowest scores on depression and anxiety, those with the highest had higher rates of cancer death. The associations were particularly strong for colon and rectal, prostate, pancreatic and esophageal cancers, and for leukemia. In instances of colorectal and prostate cancer, they found a “dose-response” effect: the greater the distress, the greater the likelihood of death from those cancers.
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