Does Your Personality Type Play into Your Risk of Developing Heart Disease?

We all know there are different personality types out there, and many of us are familiar with the terms “Type A” and “Type B” personalities. There are a number of interesting traits that set these two personality types apart, some of which are more obvious than others. But do these personality traits determine more than who you might get along with, and your approach to life? Can your personality type actually help to identify your risk of developing heart disease? Let’s examine the theory closer.

What is a Type a Personality?

First things first, what are the common traits to a Type A person? As discusses, these Type A individuals tend to be very preoccupied with social status, self-esteem, and their personal accomplishments. They tend to have a short fuse, can be impatient, are high-achievers, tend to have difficulty being able to relax, don’t take failure very well, are highly self-driven, and tend to have high stress levels.

What is a Type B Personality?

Meanwhile the Type B personality takes a bit of a more relaxed approach to life. They tend to be tolerant and indulgent, have a higher level of satisfaction in their life since they aren’t as hard on themselves, can be innovative and reflective, enjoy competition, tend not to stress too much, are aware of their abilities, can take pride in their achievements, and don’t have a short fuse unlike the Type A individuals.

How it Relates to Heart Health?

So now that we’ve covered the basics of the two personality types, the question is how they relate to your heart health? The answer may lie in a study that was done way back in the 1950s by R.H. Rosenman and Meyer Friedman, both cardiologists. They formed the idea of a type A versus a type B personality in terms of their emotional and behavioral tendencies, and then looked at how these are related to coronary heart disease.

Results from the study showed that those with a type A personality were in fact shown to have a higher risk of develop heart disease. Researchers believed that due to the type A’s inability to relax and push stress aside, it would wear on their health over time.

Since this original study was conducted, there has been plenty more research done on the topic of how a person’s personality type affects their heart health. And it has gone further than heart health, as further results have shown that these type A individuals are also at a greater risk of stroke, high blood pressure, and obesity.

Enough Evidence to Make a Person Think Twice

Thanks to the numerous studies and research conducted over the years, it may be enough to make these type A personalities take notice and make a conscious effort to slow down, ease up on themselves, and keep their own health in mind. While a person can’t change their personality completely, they can take steps that will help them to leader a healthier and happier lifestyle.


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