DETROIT (WWJ) – There’s more evidence that getting hitched helps your heart.

Married women are less likely to die from heart disease than single women, according to a new British study.

Past research has shown married men also have a lower risk of death from heart disease, but this new study is among the first to assess this link in women.

For the study, the team analyzed data from more than 700,000 women 50 and over, recruited between 1996 and 2001. Over a nearly nine-year period, almost 31,000 of the women developed heart disease and more than 2,000 died from it.

The researchers found married women or those living with a partner had the same risk of developing heart disease as unmarried women. But unmarried women were 28 percent more likely to die from heart disease, compared with those who were married.

The researchers think that’s because spouses and partner may encourage women to respond to symptoms and seek medical treatment.

The study recently appeared in the journal BMC Medicine. [More here].