The hectic holiday schedule affords many opportunities to gather with family and friends. While it’s easy to be overwhelmed by the stress of the season, taking time to relax with friends turns out to be vital for good health. This week, we’ll talk about the whole-body benefits of good friendships. Research shows that people who have strong social connections also have:
- Better cardiovascular health
- Lower risk of colds and depression
- Lower overall stress and healthier ways of coping with stress
- A stronger immune system
- Better insulin regulation
Good friendships also provide long-term brain benefits. A study from the Harvard School of Public Health of adults aged 65+ found that social interactions keep the brain sharp in later life.
While difficult relationships with friends and family members have been linked to negative health effects, positive relationships give people a greater sense of happiness and well-being. Numerous studies show that happy people live longer, healthier lives. Momentary pleasures, such as laughing with a dear friend, can improve overall happiness levels, which include a deep sense of life satisfaction, optimism, positive emotions, and the absence of negative emotions.
Read more of Dr. Naumes’ post over at D-Magazines D-Moms Blog