Illustration for article titled Being Neurotic Has Healthy Benefits

Are you a nervous wreck who seems to always sweat the small stuff? Well, you have one less thing to worry about. According to a new study, neurotic people have lower body-mass index scores and fewer diagnosed chronic health conditions.

The study—conducted at University of Rochester Medical Center—tested the blood, urine, and saliva of over 1000 adults and found that people who were self-described neurotics with "high levels of conscientiousness" (meaning they're always organized, on time, and plan ahead for things) have lower levels of Interleukin 6 (IL-6), which is a biomarker for inflammation and chronic disease.


Typically, neuroticism is associated with "increased substance abuse, higher inflammation, and increased risk of mortality," according to Nicholas Turiano, PhD, who worked on the study. "However, what we found was that when people are high both in neuroticism and conscientiousness, the conscientiousness buffers the negative effects of neuroticism."

He didn't say why neurotic people have a lower body-mass index score, but my own anecdotal evidence suggests that being nervous gives a person diarrhea, which, experienced frequently could lead to weight loss.

No worries: Neuroticism may have a healthy upside [MSNBC]

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