A US study finds, no matter how much you bicker after marriage, walking down the aisle is actually good for health, especially for men.
In the University of Arizona study, boffins reviewed blood samples from 1,715 volunteers aged 57 to 85 to measure the level of C-reactive protein (CRP), which is produced by the liver in response to inflammation.
CRP has been linked in previous studies to heart disease, depression and even stroke.
From the analyses, the research team found that a long marriage lowers a man's chance of developing serious health problems. In fact, the union is more effective than giving up smoking when guarding against potentially fatal diseases, the researchers said.
The study, published in Psychosomatic Medicine journal, found that married men had the lowest CRP levels of any group: an average of 1.16 milligrams per litre of blood compared to 2.72 for unmarried men, reports The Daily Mail.
Professor Tony Cassidy, of Ulster University, said: "This shows how strong the effect of being married and having strong social bonds can be.
"Men don't necessarily get the same kind of support from their friendships - that's why marriage is so important."