We recently read a story in the “Southern Living” magazine about a scientific study which states that an occasional mini-break with your friends is very beneficial to your health.
The article states that is has been proven that friendship can extend life expectancy, lower the chances of heart disease, and even help us better tolerate pain. In the study, psychologists were able to predict the size of someone’s social network based on how much pain they were able to withstand. Friends also make us feel good. In 2016, researchers found evidence that hanging out with friends can increase production of Oxytocin, the hormone that our bodies make when we’re happy.
Another study from Harvard found people who don’t have strong friendships tend to be more depressed, have later-life cognitive decline, and were even more likely to die at a younger age.
A study of 309.000 people found that a lack of strong social ties increased the risk of premature death from all causes by 50%, which was about the same effect as smoking up to 15 cigarettes per day. A 2012 study found that the risk of dementia was increased depending on how lonely people felt.
SO….. having friendships and being around friends is scientifically good for your health. Keep a few really good friends around because it could make a world of difference for your health and well being. Invest in your friendships and take some time to do things. It’s contagious and you’ll want to do again and again. Just get some friends together over dinner, clear your schedule and start planning a trip or weekend get away … for your health!