This Relationship Can Help Fight Off Disease, Lengthen Lifespan, And More!

Posted by GreaterGoodness

It goes without saying that friendships can be a lot of work. However, they can also have several benefits that make them worth keeping.

Read on to discover eight ways your friendships can improve your well-being.

1. Friends Make Obstacles Seem Less Challenging

photo_0152362125hudwhm

Image by Sagar via Flickr

When faced with life or situational challenges, some individuals become too worried and focused on the negative to move beyond the challenge. Friends can offer an alternative perspective that helps calm worrisome energy and restore clear thinking.

2. Friendships Can Be Heart-Healthy

photo_0152362126qewbxc

Image by lavaki via pixabay

Friendships help you reduce stress and relax, according to Consumer Healthday. Stress reduction alleviates pressure on the heart and prevents heart attacks.

3. Friends Help You Live Longer

photo_0152362127utagec

Image by Rodrigo Paredes via Flickr

An Australian study of 1,500 elderly men and women found that individuals with more friendships lived 22 percent longer than those with the fewest friends. A separate study focused on women with coronary artery disease reported similar results. Those with strong friendships were more likely to be alive two years after the study.

4. Friends Can Encourage Healthy Habits

photo_0152362128xyzpur

Image by Global Panorama via Flickr

Some researchers believe that a part of the reason that individuals with friendships live longer is because of healthy encouragement. Good friends can motivate to ditch unhealthy lifestyle choices, such as smoking and poor diet. These changes ultimately improve a person’s health and quality of life.

5. Friendships Help Fight Off Diseases

photo_0152362129fxfugs

Image by Jeff Adair via Flickr

Friendships are linked to lower health risks in women with ovarian cancer, according to WebMD. Ovarian cancer patients with a larger social network have lower levels of a protein associated with more aggressive forms of the disease. Women with less supportive relationships had 70 percent higher levels of the protein.

6. Friends Are Self-Confidence Boosters

photo_0152362131gflxgt

Image by Chris & Karen Highland via Flickr

Good friendships allow individuals to express and be reassured of personal insecurities, according to Psychology Today. This emotional support makes people feel good about themselves and their abilities.

7. Loneliness Shortens Your Lifespan

photo_0152362131qhwlmh

Image by David Hodgson via Flickr

Swedish researchers investigating the impact of friendship on heart health found that individuals with little or no friendships were 50 percent more likely to have heart attack. In elderly individuals, loneliness was further linked with inflammation, a known cause of heart disease.

8. Close Friends May Be Genetically Related

photo_0152362133rkbkyl

Image by Bengin Ahmad via Flickr

A study published in the Proceedings of the Natural Academy of Sciences researched the genetic similarities of individuals in close friendships. The study showed that close friends shared DNA similar to that of fourth cousins, meaning best buddies may actually share a ‘friendship gene.’

Share this with a close friend in your life!

GreaterGoodness shares stories to uplift and inspire, each one giving you the chance to help people, save pets and improve the planet – for free. Find out how your clicks make a difference.