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Can Health Depend on a Pet?

By Tom Herrin

Managing our health can be a bit tricky.  It is true that some are simply born with a good genetic base and it offers them more protection than others may have.  No matter how hard they try, maintaining good health can be a challenge.  For those of us who have more struggles trying to keep up, it is important for us to establish good practices that can support our needs.  Now as to any question about the role a pet may play, while our health may not be largely dependent upon having a pet, doing so may indeed be a great way of helping us with our efforts.

Having a Pet May Help with Hormones

Our chemical makeup is a pretty important part of our overall health.  Hormones can be very good or very bad as to the way in which they affect us.  One that is particularly bad at times is cortisol.  It relates to stress, and when we have too much of it, we can become ill.  Some believe that having a pet may help to reduce the levels of cortisol in the body.  Converse to this is oxytocin.  It is often referred to as a feel-good hormone because it does just that.  It makes us feel good.  Having a pet is thought to increase our levels of this hormone.  Some of us have surely experienced this.

We Can All Use Exercise

If you have a pet, you really need to make sure that pet has the opportunity to get regular exercise.  If that is something you do with a leash, guess what?  You will need to be on the other end of that leash as your pet explores the outdoors.  Many times, you may find that this is a much more pleasant way of getting exercise than going through a regular program.  Some find these programs to be a bit too repetitious, and they soon lose interest.  Hanging out in a natural setting with a pet can be a little more motivating for some.  Personally, I love the chance to be outdoors on good days.

We Need Friends

While we usually have some human friends, pets are a very different kind.  They can provide some good companionship while reducing the frustration we may have of disagreements.  Pets seldom do this.  They are almost always happy to see us, and they give us some purpose in that it requires taking responsibility to care for them.  This can all be part of building a positive relationship and a good overall feeling.

To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Cedar Park, Tex.

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