It’s not exactly a new thing to say that having friendships is essential to your physical and emotional well-being but a new study traces exactly which benefits come with having friends at every age.
The findings come from a research project at the University of Carolina in Chapel Hill which talks about the benefits every age group gains from the friendships they make.
Both adolescents and those approaching their twilight years benefit the most from having a lot of friends instead of sticking to just one particular group. Teenagers with inactive social lives experience health risks equivalent to those who live a sedentary lifestyle. For the elderly, having limited friends increases the risks of hypertension and heart disease.
On the other hand, those in the middle of the two age groups benefit the most from having quality friendships over having a wide social circle. People who have close bonds with their friends score well in the markers used by the study which include blood pressure, waist circumference, and body mass index.
Across the board, having friendships keeps cancer at bay. The study goes on to state that maintaining social interactions is just as important as observing proper diet and getting enough exercise for the rest of your life. So the next time you’re skipping out on a night in to binge-watch Scandal to go party with your crew or stay up until 3 a.m. to talk to your best friend about life—you’re doing it for your health.
Photo courtesy of Hollywood Reporter