Absence makes the heart grow fonder, as the old adage says, but those living in lost-distance relationships could also be helping their health, new research suggests.
Couples who are in long-distance marriages tend to be physically and mentally healthier, according to a study by researchers at The Family Institute at Northwestern University.
For the study, researchers conducted a survey involving around 300 married participants. The couples were either living together (proximal marriages) or living apart (long-distance marriages.) The long-distance participants were those classified as living more than 50 miles apart for the majority of the week, mainly due to work.
The couples that spent more time apart were shown to have lower scores of anxiety and depression. They also ate healthier and were more active.
This could be due to benefiting from both being married as well as having the independence that can come with being single. Those in a long-distance marriage have both the loving relationship and spousal support as well as extra time for socializing and recreation, the researchers suggest.