Dr. Brian McDonough, Medical Editor

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – You may not realize it but your emotions can play a big role in your health. There is definitely an impact on the heart.

Depression, stress, anxiety, and other emotional states really do affect your cardiovascular health.

A stressful event can trigger a heart attack in people at risk and studies have shown stressed, anxious, or depressed people have more difficulty recovering from heart problems.

In a recent study, researchers asked more than 150 healthy adults to undergo brain scans while looking at unpleasant pictures.

Study participants had increased activity in brain areas linked to both emotions and inflammation. These same people had higher blood levels of inflammatory cells and signs of damage in their blood vessels.

This, of course, can lead to heart disease.

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