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30th Apr 2015

Sons breaking your heart? There’s some research to support that…

Katie Mythen-Lynch

Working mums who have at least two sons are more likely to suffer from heart disease, according to new research.

During an eight-year study of more than 100,000 Italian women, the majority of whom worked outside the home, researchers discovered that the mums who had two or more boys were more than twice as likely to suffer from heart trouble compared to people who have no children. Interestingly, having daughters appeared to have no impact on a mother’s health.

The team of researchers from Turin University suspect that Italian sons tend to do less around the house, meaning their mothers are also forced to take care of the cooking and cleaning when they come home at the end of a long day. Daughters may be more likely to lend a hand, easing the pressure on their working mum.

It’s also possible that teen boys’ bad behaviour sends stress levels skywards, making other risk factors (such as high cholesterol or high blood pressure) worse.

The team hope to test their theory by carrying out a similar study in Scandinavia, where men and women tend to share the bulk of the household chores.