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Get Happy, Get Healthy

By Stephen Maxwell March 04, 2021

Get Happy, Get Healthy
New research finds that higher life satisfaction is correlated with higher overall health: psychological, physical and behavioural.

The Milbank Quarterly published recent research that found higher life satisfaction is associated to 21 positive health & wellbeing markers, including:

  • 46% depression reduction risk

  • 26% reduction in risk of mortality

  • 25% decreased risk of physical functioning limitations

  • 12% decreased risk of chronic pain

  • 14% reduced risk of sleep onset insomnia (initially falling asleep)

  • 8% higher likelihood of being engaged in regular physical activity

  • increased mental well-being such as feeling more optimistic and positive, with a purpose in life and a sense of mastery. These people also reported a decreased sense of loneliness, hopelessness and general negativity.

Who was in the study?

Almost 13,000 adults, over age 50. The study was a self evaluation over four years, designed to see if there was a link between overall life satisfaction and health factors. 

What does this mean for you?

Whether you're dealing with acute or chronic physical symptoms, or simply want to watch out for your health, know that there is much you can control. By actively taking steps to life your best life, no matter how you feel, you'll enjoy greater satisfaction out of your days, and even help protect your mind and body against health challenges.

How can you start improving your life satisfaction?

Here's some tips to get started:

  • Express gratitude for the blessings you have right now

  • Set some goals that you're inspired to achieve

  • Get out into nature

  • Connect with your family and friends more often

  • Decrease the use of social media

  • Work on your physical fitness

  • Make an effort to eat more fruits and vegetables

  • Seek help where needed - you don't need to feel stuck on your own!

  • Practise meditation and mindfulness

  • Find ways to help you 'switch off' from work

  • Improve your posture

  • Make sleep and rest a priority

  • Play, have fun and be silly - it's not just for kids!

Want a little extra nutritional support?

Final Thoughts:

Your life and how much you love it matters. Intergovernmental organisations like the United Nations (UN) and World Health Organisation (WHO), have been pushing countries over the last few years to include wellbeing indicators when deciding on national policy. This highlights how much of a potential flow on effect the sense of individual and community wellbeing can have. When you take steps to love your life more, everyone wins!

Reference:

University of British Columbia. "High life satisfaction linked to better overall health." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 3 March 2021. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2021/03/210303091405.htm>.

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