In February we celebrate Valentine’s Day, but with my sons I celebrate February as “Love and Friendship” month. More than just fun times, studies have shown that friendships help us live better and even longer! A Harvard study found that physical impairments were less likely to develop in those who have many friends. In fact the results were so significant, the researchers concluded, that not having close friends or confidantes was as detrimental to your health as smoking or carrying extra weight! Another group of researches found that people who had no friends increased their risk of death, while those who had the most friends cut their risk by more than 60%! When our lives get hectic social time seems the first to be cut out, but that’s exactly when we need it the most. Although the exact mechanisms for this health benefit are still undetermined, friendships bring joy, laughter, and often empathy to our lives. Make time for your friends for the sake of your health!
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