Health and Happiness are Linked

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Well-controlled studies conducted in large populations indicate that people who are more optimistic or have a greater sense of purpose have at least a 20% reduced risk of developing major illnesses such as coronary heart disease and diabetes. (Time Magazine, The Science of Happiness)

Highlights from an article in Berkeley University’s Greater Good Magazine looked at 6 Ways Happiness Is Good for Your Health. Below is a summary of some of the findings:

In a 2011 study, almost 4,000 English adults ages 52-79 reported how happy, excited, and content they were multiple times in a single day. Happier people were 35% less likely to die over the course of the next five years than their unhappier counterparts. When participants rated their happiness more than 30 times a day, researchers also found associations between happiness and stress. The happiest participants had 23% lower levels of the stress hormone cortisol. The level of a blood-clotting protein that increases after stress was also 12 times lower.

In a 2008 study of nearly 10,000 Australians, participants who reported being happy and satisfied with life most or all of the time were about 1.5 times less likely to have long-term health conditions (like chronic pain and serious vision problems).

In a 2004 study, over 1,550 Mexican Americans ages 65 and older rated how much self-esteem, hope, happiness, and enjoyment they felt over the past week. After seven years, the participants with more positive emotion ratings were less likely to be frail. Some of the same researchers also found that happier elderly people (by the same measure of positive emotion) were less likely to have a stroke in the subsequent six years; this was particularly true for men.

Being Happy:

  • Stimulates the growth of nerve connections
  • Improves cognition by increasing mental productivity
  • Improves your ability to analyze and think
  • Affects the way you view the world
  • Increases attentiveness and awareness
  • Fuels happy thoughts
  • Leads to a greater sense of peace and contentment

Looks like Harvard also has some answers. The longest study conducted to date by Harvard University on happiness reports, one of the greatest markers of happiness is your ability to accept everything that happens in life… even the bad stuff. The kicker is not just accepting it but figuring out a way to be grateful for it. Click here to reveal the 6 things you can do to make your life awesome. Harvard research studies are no joke. I’d pause and check it out.

“Happy people are more creative, solve problems faster, and tend to be more mentally alert.”
– Susan Reynolds, Psychology Today, “Happy Brain, Happy Life”

Access more research and information supporting the Ideal Being® Model and Philosophy.