Why Generosity Is Good For Your Health

Posted on December 11, 2013

Giving of yourself -- whether it be your time, energy or money -- isn't just a boon to those you're helping. A wealth of research shows that generosity can also have benefits for the receiver, ranging from a better outlook at your job, to more years of life. Check out these science-backed reasons to make generosity a regular part of your day.

It will keep stress in check.

Being stingy -- and ashamed of said stinginess -- is linked with higher levels of the stress hormone cortisol, according to a study from social psychologist Liz Dunn. Scientific American reported on the findings of the study, which examined cortisol levels in response to giving away money, and choosing to keep more money for yourself. The more money people chose to keep in the experiment, the greater shame they felt -- and the higher their cortisol levels were. While some stress is good, chronically high levels of stress have been linked to a number of health ills.

You'll enjoy more years of life.

Researchers from the University of Buffalo found a link between giving and unselfishness and having a lower risk of early death. Published in the American Journal of Public Health, the findings show that helping others -- whether it be by helping to run errands, watching their children or giving them a lift somewhere -- is linked with a decreased mortality risk. “Our conclusion is that helping others reduced mortality specifically by buffering the association between stress and mortality," study researcher Michael J. Poulin, Ph.D., an assistant professor of psychology at the University at Buffalo, told PsychCentral.


Category(s):Health / Illness / Medical Issues

Source material from Huffington Post


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