When you marry your lifestyle habits become more alike. The November 2008 issue of Psychology Today presents research showing marital relationships steer our physical well being. Researchers are finding that spouses influence each others eating habits, doctor visits, use of alcohol, cigarettes and marijuana.
Couples can even develop the same illness over time the Yale School of Public Health did a study over four years of over 6,000 people. Results showed that in every single behavior there was spousal effect. For example if one spouse quit smoking the other was 6-8 times more likely to quit. If one quit drinking alcohol the other was five times more likely to quit. The one exception to this is exercise. Here there was an effect, but it was milder.
The good news: one of the best ways to change your spouse is to change yourself.
Nagging does not work and in fact can have the opposite effect. So look to yourself, and " clean up your side of the road", your spouse may follow. You may be pleasantly surprises what happens when you stop trying to "help" them change. Instead focus your attention on getting your own habits on track.