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Not having friends has the same health risks as smoking a pack of cigarette a day

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Alcoholism and obesity have always been known for their ill effects on the health of the individuals, but there is something that is as ugly as them and that is the feeling of loneliness.

Loneliness

According to a recent study, support of neighbors, friends and family members is extremely important in every person’s life; it leads to a healthy old age and increases the lifespan, to a certain extent.

The Study:

The findings of the study state that social isolation can actually lead to an early death of the person, for it is as bad as consuming 15 cigarettes every day or depending upon alcohol to relieve stress. This study was conducted on 300,000 individuals and the results are as shared.

The worst is that it affects the individual’s health in the ugliest manner – just like obesity does. When you don’t exercise, you turn obese and when you are lonely, you get closer to death.

According to Dr. Julianne Holt-Lunstad, when you are connected to a group of people, you feel a sense of responsibility for them. You know that they are there for you and hence you feel like taking care of yourself in a much better way. You take fewer risks since others’ happiness is attached to your life.

The Research:

The research peeped into the data from 148 different published studies that had once calculated social networks of different people and tracked their health as well for around seven and half years.

According to the authors of this study, positive friendships can provide you with a lot of health benefits. When you know that you have someone to rely upon, you have the zeal to live and hence you take care of yourself in a much better way. You feel socially connected to others around you.

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Image courtesy: Ktoine/wikimedia