Positive Self-Image Leads to Better Health

By admin

Originally published on Advocate.com September 18 2008 12:00 AM ET

Gay and bisexual
men with a positive disposition toward homosexuality
tend to be in better health than those who view their sexual
orientation negatively, according to a University of
Minnesota study.

More than 400 men
from the Midwest took part in the study. In all cases,
men who said they viewed homosexuality as something negative
tended to have poorer mental and sexual health.

Dr. Simon Rosser,
the principal investigator, said that the study is a
missing link in understanding the correlation between sexual
orientation and overall health.

"It provides new
evidence that negative attitudes towards
homosexuality, not homosexuality itself, are associated with
both poorer mental and sexual health outcomes seen in
sexual minorities," he said in a press release.
"Conversely, positive attitudes towards homosexuality
are associated with better mental and sexual health."

The results
showed no direct correlation between the respondents'
sexual actions and their physical health, helping to
disprove the popular social-conservative argument
that same-sex intimacies are
inherently unhealthy. Rosser said that gay men who are
advised to suppress their sexual orientation often
experience depression and poorer sexual health.
"In short, viewing homosexuality as a disorder is not
only inaccurate, it may be harmful as well," he said.

The full study
will appear in the Journal of Homosexuality.
(Michelle Garcia, The Advocate)