Summer is a great time to gather with loved ones! If you need another reason to connect with friends and family, then here it is: social connection promotes overall health and longevity! Did you know that one landmark study found that social isolation has a more substantial impact on health than obesity, smoking and high blood pressure? Let’s take a closer look at the benefits:
Social connection enhances longevity
Research has found that strong social connection reduces the likelihood of premature death by 50%. This research concluded that individuals who have healthy and strong relationships live longer.
Social connection enhances the immune system
Did you know that some of the genes impacted by loneliness are the same genes that code for immune function and inflammatory response? This genetic research suggests that social connectedness supports immune function. On the other hand, social isolation likely reduces immune function.
Social connection reduces anxiety and depression
Recently, a study concluded that social connection is the “strongest protective factor” for depression. Similarly, it has also been shown that those who feel more socially connected have reduced levels of both anxiety and depression.
Are you feeling social? Make plans to meet your loved ones for a summer walk, picnic in the park or trip away!