A Surprising Secret to Longevity
By Stepy Kamei
Most of us are trying to do what we can to stay healthy and live long, productive lives. We know we need to eat a healthy and nutritious diet, and stay active and physically fit. After all, countless studies have shown that people who eat nutritiously, exercise often, and sleep well tend to live longer lives and experience fewer health problems. Therefore, we often tend to focus on improving our physical health as much as we can. This may explain why we place so much of our focus and attention on matters pertaining to the body. However, there's one aspect of our well-being that we may not be paying enough attention to, for fear that it might not be important. Read on to learn what the surprising secret to living a long and healthy life is, and why it benefits your health so much.
Diet, Exercise, and Friends
You're eating well-balanced meals, and you're hitting the gym a few times a week. This is great for your health, but you should ask yourself one more question: Who are you doing these activities with?
As it turns out, having an active social life can be just as important to our well-being as any other wellness routine we engage in. For instance, you may be aware of how healthy and robust people who live in the Mediterranean region are. This is due to their fresh eating habits and active lifestyle, yes -- but it also is in large part thanks to the close ties they keep with their friends, family, and the community at large.
How Social Connections Keep Us Flourishing
Admittedly, the research can't really pinpoint the exact effect social ties have on the body. But what is clear, in study after study, is that people who make maintaining their social bonds a big priority tend to have a much easier time passing various health checkpoints as well.
People who value the importance of keeping up with friends, reaching out for support when needed, and providing help to others when called upon tend to be better able to take care of their own physical and mental health. People with an abundance of friends tend to have more outlets of releasing stress and anxiety, which can help boost mental health. Furthermore, friends and loved ones can, and often do, help encourage each other to stick to their health and wellness goals. For instance, many friends strike up pacts to go to the gym together. When you think about it, it's much easier to gather up the motivation to hit the gym when you know your friend is counting on you to show up.
Studies have also shown that people with strong social ties tend to smoke and drink less, eat healthier, sleep better, and even avoid health conditions such as obesity and heart disease.
The studies are in: While you're on your journey toward better health and wellness, don't forget to reach out to friends and loved ones often!
To learn more about your health, wellness and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Hoboken, N.J.