That's what the NY Times claims anyway. The article quotes several studies that show that people in happy marriages have lower rates of heart disease, heal faster and are generally healthier. They compared married people to people who were single and divorced in their studies. The key is obviously not just to be married but to be happily married.
I find this fascinating because it reinforces yet again what we intuitively know and is now slowly being proven- how strong the mind-body connection is and its effects in many realms, particularly relationships. Being in a healthy relationship will affect your physical well being. So will your level of contentment at work and many other aspects of your life.
Similarly, in childbirth (admit it- you knew I was going to go there..) our state of mind is very important. If a woman feel confident in her ability to birth, supported by her partner and doula and generally calm, it will affect the physical aspect of her labor. Her body will respond positively to the positive messages her brain is sending. Makes sense, no? That's my brilliant thought for the day. Check out the article- it's interesting and worth a read.