Keeping up With Pets May Support Better Health
By Tom Herrin
For those of us who had pets as kids, most of our memories are probably pretty good. It may have gone a little bad once we had to take full responsibility for them. Pets may actually do more for us than entertain. Some recent research has indicated that interacting with pets may be good for our health. It was found that in one group of people who were suffering from some stress-related issues, more than 80 percent showed improvement after having been paired with a service animal. What is even more impressive is that some 40 percent were able to reduce some of their medication. This says a lot about the benefits of having a pet.
Pets May Affect Hormones
Hormones are something that are a little unique. We all have them and rely on them in different ways. They can make us feel good or bad, and lots of things can throw them out of sync. It seems that dealing with a pet may increase or decrease them. Cortisol is a hormone that can increase stress and make us feel bad. Interacting with a pet is thought to reduce the levels of this hormone. A hormone that makes us feel good is oxytocin. There is evidence that having a pet may help to increase the amount of oxytocin we have. Feeling good is a big part of experiencing better health.
You Both Get Exercise
Most of us are aware that we need to get exercise. Our pets do as well. When we walk with them, we will at least get mild exercise. It is possible that we will enjoy it enough to go more frequently and do more exploring. In some cases, we may be able to jog with a pet. As we get more involved, it can be surprising as to how we may find ways to raise our level of exercise to a higher level.
Companionship Means a Lot
Many of us like spending time alone. I always like to have some of that kind of time, but we need to be able to interact with others. A pet will always make you feel wanted and appreciated. They are happy to see you when you get home. They will seek to spend time with you and follow you around. You can talk to them without fear of confrontation. They also give you someone to be responsible for.
To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Irving, Tex.