US citizens are sicker, in general, than their UK and Canadian counterparts, and working moms are healthier than stay-at-homes.

While it may seem incredibly stressful to the women who are accomplishing this feat, holding down a job and being a mom in a steady relationship helps keep women healthy and in good shape, while a career as a homemaker seems to increase the chances of becoming obese.

Statistics show that by the age of 54, women who had been partners, parents, and employees were significantly less likely to report ill health than women who did not fulfil all three roles.

Women who had been home-makers for all or most of their lives, and had not held down a job, were most likely to say their health was poor, followed by single mothers and childless women.

Women who had worked during several periods of their lives were less likely to be obese than women who had rarely worked. Weight gain tended to occur at a faster rate among the homemakers.

One thing that keeps women healthy is the right amount of alcohol. Research involving more than 7,000 older women found that those who drink a moderate amount of alcohol have slightly higher levels of mental function than non-drinkers, particularly in verbal abilities.

And don’t forget that apple-a-day: apples, like all fruits and vegetables, are a great source of flavonoids, substances which inhibit the kinds of cellular activity that lead to the development of chronic diseases, including heart disease and cancer. Flavonoids are also found in chocolate and green tea.

So ladies: come home from a busy day at work, kiss your kids, then sip a nice cup of tea, eat a bite of chocolate, nibble on an apple and take a sip of sherry. Ah?sounds heavenly!

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