But exactly what information beyond traditional objective health indicators could self-rated health offer? William Malarkey,
M.D., a professor of internal medicine at Ohio State University and a member of the research team, ventured a possible explanation
during an interview with Psychiatric News: Some of the subjects were probably "worriers," and "they paid a physiological price for their worrying with an increased
level of inflammatory compounds." The inflammatory compounds then made them feel unwell by provoking fatigue, lack of appetite,
and other illness symptoms. And if people experience an elevation of inflammatory compounds long enough, Malarkey explained,
the elevation can contribute, at least in some individuals, to the development of illnesses such as arthritis, cancer, cardiovascular
disease, diabetes, or inflammatory bowel disease.