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Thursday, September 12, 2024

Mental Health That Will Have You Living Longer

In today’s world, there are so many ways to improve our physical health: taking vitamins, exercising, eating a healthy diet. But what about our mental health? Research has proven that many simple activities can enhance your quality of life and keep you living longer. Take a look at this list of everyday habits; it’s definitely more fun than taking your daily vitamins.

Laugh a Little
Laughing can double as a workout. It’s been found that 100 to 200 laughs are equal to ten minutes of jogging. More importantly, humor has the ability to lower stress levels and increase the activity of the body’s defensive killer cells. Laughter allows your body to release feel-good endorphins that may result in a good mood. Learn how to use humor under stress. Things don’t seem as bad if you can get a laugh out of them.

Learn How to Play an Instrument
When you learn how to play an instrument, your brain cells work together in a way that improves the overall function of your brain. This type of mental stimulation motivates the memory cells and keeps your mind growing.

Attention Chocolate Lovers
According to the Harvard School of Public Health, people who eat a moderate amount of chocolate live longer than those who eat other sweets. They even live longer than those who don’t eat sweets at all. When eating chocolate, your body receives a chemical called phenol, which is thought to fight against heart disease and cancer. What’s the one thing better than chocolate? Dark chocolate. It contains antioxidants can lower your blood pressure as well as your cholesterol. Find a dark chocolate you love and eat a piece of it daily. You’ll feel an immediate energy boost.

Sit Back and Relax
Relaxation is one of the best methods to relieve stress because it reduces blood pressure and decrease your chances of experiencing depression. Consider yoga or meditation, both of which will make some of your stress disappear.

Find a Furry Friend
Studies from Cambridge University show that people who have the company of a dog or cat are less stressed and have fewer visits to their doctor. Pets, especially dogs, make you feel optimistic and calm. Most importantly, they’re the best listeners.

Check Your Attitude
If you want to live longer, attitude is key. Not only will it enhance your quality of life, it can also affect your lifespan. Research from the Mayo Clinic discovered that positive people decreased their risk of early death by 50 percent. Look at the glass half full, rather than half empty. It’s as easy as that.

Smiling is a great way to heighten your positivity, as well as the positivity of others. It works to counter the effects of stress on your body. By smiling, you are tricking your mind into believing that it’s happy, resulting in a relief of stress. So even if you’re feeling down, put a smile on your face. It will change your mood, and before you know it, you’ll be smiling for real.

Belt Out a Tune
I think we can all agree that belting out your favorite song usually feels good. Studies show that people in a choir feel healthier, have fewer doctor visits, and appear less depressed in general. According to the University of London, singing reduces stress by creating endorphins and exercising the heart, lungs, and back muscles.

Surround Yourself with the People You Love
This may be the most important factor in expanding your lifespan. Forming close relationships with people is an important part of your health because it keeps you positive and helps you fight depression. Being surrounded by loved ones makes a person happy; it’s as simple as that.


Melanie Marzillo
Research & Community Education

Chicago Skilled Nursing
Chicago Senior Living

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