Are Friends Good For Your Health?

Posted by: Beena Q (November 16, 2011)

We all know how good a fun night out with a group of friends can feel — and, turns out, it may actually be just as good for your body as it is for your state of mind. Lately, study after study has found that enjoying an active social life can improve your health. Here, six scientifically-backed reasons to be thankful for your friends:

1)??They Can Slash Dementia Risk.??Having a highly active social life can decrease Alzheimer’s disease risk by a surprisingly high 70 percent, according to new findings published in the??Journal of the International Neuropsychological Society.

2)??They Can Keep You Fit. ??You may have thought you grew out of peer pressure in grade school, but a recent Australian study published in the??International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity??found that our friends have a direct influence over our physical activity levels and eating habits.

3)??They Can Sharpen Your Brain.??Friendly chit-chat can have the same cognitive boost as, say, solving a crossword puzzle, according to research conducted at the??University of Michigan.

4)??They Can Bolster Self Esteem.??Gossiping with friends gets a bad rap, but that may not be totally deserved. A study from Staffordshire University??recently found??that when people gossip about someone in a positive way, they actually leave the conversation feeling better about themselves — but keep it nice: mean-spirited gossip had the opposite effect.

5)??They Can Promote Better Health Later In Life. ??Having supportive relationships can actually postpone the aging process. Arecent study??from Brandeis University researchers found that a strong social network — especially when combined with physical exercise and a feeling of control in one’s life — could delay health declines by up to ten years.

6)??They Can Help You Live Longer. ??Strong relationships with friends and family can increase your odds of surviving by a whopping 50 percent, according to??recent research??from Brigham Young University.


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