Studies have shown that massage and aromatherapy both relieve symptoms of depression. New research shows that depression increases risk for heart disease more than genetics or environment.

Researchers at Washington University School of Medicine found a history of major depression increases the risk of heart disease over and above any genetic risks common to depression and heart disease. The findings are reported this week at the annual meeting of the American Psychosomatic Society in Chicago.

The researchers analyzed data gathered from more than 1,200 male twins who served in the U.S. military during the Vietnam War. The men were surveyed on a variety of health issues in 1992, including depression, and were assessed again in 2005.

In the study, investigators looked at the onset of heart disease in depressed study participants between 1993 and 2005. Men with depression in 1992 were twice as likely to develop heart disease in the ensuing years, compared to men with no history of depression.

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