Being sociable is good for your health

Posted on July 28, 2010  Comments (7)

With a little help from your friends you can live longer

A circle of close friends and strong family ties can boost a person’s health more than exercise, losing weight or quitting cigarettes and alcohol, psychologists say.

Holt-Lunstad’s team reviewed 148 studies that tracked the social interactions and health of 308,849 people over an average of 7.5 years. From these they worked out how death rates varied depending on how sociable a person was.

Being lonely and isolated was as bad for a person’s health as smoking 15 cigarettes a day or being an alcoholic. It was as harmful as not exercising and twice as bad for the health as being obese.

Open access paper: Social Relationships and Mortality Risk: A Meta-analytic Review.

Related: How to build and maintain essential relationshipsCDC Urges Reduction in Salt Intake to Save Hundreds of Thousands of LivesWhy People Often Get Sicker When They’re Stressed

7 Responses to “Being sociable is good for your health”

  1. Terry Vixom
    July 28th, 2010 @ 9:53 pm

    Wow sounds like I either need to make more friends, or stop smoking. One of the two.

  2. Anonymous
    August 2nd, 2010 @ 3:00 pm

    This sounds like I need to make a lot more new friends so I can live longer. Lets not forget to live healthy.

  3. Calgary
    August 4th, 2010 @ 10:42 pm

    Yeah! I believe with this study! Being aloof is really bad to our health. As I notice to myself, I can’t really live without friends. I am a vocal person, that’s why talking and being amiable are my habits. Be happy and always wear a smile so that we can gain more friends.. and we can live longer.

  4. Doug Taylor
    August 11th, 2010 @ 7:51 pm

    My big concern after reading this is the advent of Social Media and Social Network websites. Such as Facebook. The more people use those sites to talk to one another, that will reduce face to face social activity. According to this article, that is bad for our health. And Social Media will continue to grow so we need to find a way to move away from our computers and do more person to person interaction in order to stay healthy.

  5. Anonymous
    August 26th, 2010 @ 5:49 am

    I also believe that strong family relation and circle of good friends improve our strength rather than other things. because strong relationship provide mental satisfaction and if we are mantely satisfied then no one can make our depressed.

  6. marbella
    August 27th, 2010 @ 4:57 pm

    I agree that remaining isolated for a very long time can kill the emotional attachments of a person with people but too much socializing can also be harmful. Some people, specially teenagers, tend to catch some bad habits from their friends and parents are mostly unaware of their habits until the problem becomes extremely serious. Social networking sites should be used in a limit so that chances for face to face interaction are increased.

  7. marylou
    January 29th, 2012 @ 5:17 am

    I’m agree. I’ve been friendless for 2 years and my BF said I’m more stone hearted than what I used to be. friends = mental fulfillment

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