4 AWESOME WAYS GIVING WILL IMPROVE YOUR HEALTH: WHY HELPING OTHERS IS GREAT FOR YOUR WELLBEING
So it turns out the secret of living really is giving and we have the research-backed reasons to prove it…
We all know how giving can help others, whether this is through offering emotional support, donating to charity or getting involved in some volunteer work. But studies have revealed that giving is also good for the giver – boosting your mental and physical health. Pretty great, right?
Did you know that when people give, the same part of your brain that lights up from feelings of reward or pleasure, lights up when you give to and help others? This is according to an article from Rush University.
Keep reading to find out about the other incredible benefits linked to giving.
1.Helps you to live a longer life
You read that right – according to studies done, giving can, in fact, help you to live a longer and happier life.
Giving provides people with a deeper sense of meaning in their lives. When you work toward a goal and feel as though you are making a positive impact on another person’s life, this has both physical and psychological benefits. Researchers have linked this sense of purpose to lower mortality rates.
Moral of the story – the more you give the longer you live.
2. Boosts your immune system
By taking part in kind deeds, this will decrease your stress levels and improve your overall wellbeing.
Think about the last time you helped someone out. Whether it was adopting a shelter dog or just taking a family member to the airport, you feel pretty great afterwards, right? Well, when we feel great our bodies respond in the best way possible by boosting our immune system.
Studies have found that our T cell levels (which are these special immune system cells) increase in numbers when we give. This means we have a better system of defence against germs and even cancer because your immune system is able to fight off cancerous growths.
3. Lowers your risk of depression
This might have a link to the positive feelings associated with acts of giving, but the fact remains, giving helps prevent depression and symptoms of depression, such as a lack of energy or sadness.
A study found that giving helps you to have a greater sense of control in your life.
Another research team discovered that those who have recently suffered the loss of a loved one recovered more quickly from their depressive state after taking parts in acts of giving and helping others.
4. Relieves pain
As if the above benefits aren’t enough to make you want to call up your nearest community centre or a visit a family member you haven’t seen in ages, there’s more…
Giving just keeps on ‘giving’ us more amazing benefits, and pain relief is another one.
By taking part in acts of giving and kindness, this helps to suppress any physical pain you are experiencing through the release of endorphins.
Fun fact – endorphins are also released when we exercise. They are basically our happy hormones and are a natural pain reliever.
Endorphins interact with the receptors in your brain to help reduce your perception of pain and also trigger a happy and positive feeling in your body.