Hot Tempered People Live Longer Than ‘Repressors’ [Study]

Robert Jonathan - Author

Aug. 11 2013, Updated 2:52 a.m. ET

Anger management may not be all what it’s cracked up to be.

That’s because individuals who vent their emotions live about two years longer than those who hold back their feelings at least according to a new study.

Researchers at Germany’s University of Jena who studied approximately 6,000 patients concluded that Italians and Spaniards who generally tend to vocalize their anger outlive their British counterparts who are more likely to internalize their feelings.

In summarizing the study, Medical News Daily reports that repressing emotions and engaging in self restraint (the traditional British “stiff upper lip”) could have undesirable health consequences in relation to lifespan because unexpressed anger can result in an elevated pulse rate:

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“Researchers say that over time, raised pulse can result in high blood pressure and increase a person’s risk of developing a wide range of conditions from heart disease to cancer, kidney damage and more.”

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Study co-author Marcus Mund, according to London’s Daily Mail, suggested that the reserved group is at risk for developing illnesses in part because this cohort tends to conceal feelings related to fear:

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” ‘They avoid risks and always seek a high level of control over themselves and their surroundings.

“‘For instance, when exposed to a stressful task they exhibit a higher heart rate and pulse ratio than non-repressors and show other objective signs of stress and anxiety.'”

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The so-called repressors who bottle up their feelings rather than expressing negative emotions have one thing going for them, however — the ability to bounce back fast. “Because of their need for control, repressors are very disciplined and more motivated to adapt their lifestyles,” Mund noted.

The findings were published in the Health Psychologies journal, a publication which does not appear to be currently available online.

Do you accept the premise of this study that being hot tempered is actually healthy? Is an angry person also a healthy person?

[Image by Shutterstock]


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