Monday, June 15, 2009

The Healing Power of Your Pals

It's been known for a while that our relations with other can affect longevity- married men, for instance, live longer than unmarried ones on average. But a new Australian study suggests that it's not just close family that counts. Monitoring 1477 people over the age of 70 for ten years, scientists found that those with the strongest network of friends tended to live longest, where as contact with relatives didn't make much difference. The team suggest that friends might affect health behavior such as smoking and drinking, as well as boosting mood and self-esteem, which can have a positive physiological effect in the same way stress can have a negative one.

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