Friends

July 28, 2010

Lack of friendship is supposedly worse on your well being than a Quadruple Bypass Burger from the Heart Attack Grill.
From Reuters on a report released Tuesday by a research team at Brigham Young University:

Having good social relationships — friends, marriage or children — may be every bit as important to a healthy lifespan as quitting smoking, losing weight or taking certain medications…

“A lack of social relationships was equivalent to smoking up to 15 cigarettes a day,” psychologist Julianne Holt-Lunstad, who led the study, said in a telephone interview.
Her team conducted a meta-analysis of studies that examine social relationships and their effects on health. They looked at 148 studies that covered more than 308,000 people for their analysis, published in the Public Library of Science journal PLoS Medicine at http://www.plosmedicine.org.

Having low levels of social interaction was equivalent to being an alcoholic, was more harmful than not exercising and was twice as harmful as obesity.
Social relationships had a bigger impact on premature death than getting an adult vaccine to prevent pneumonia, than taking drugs for high blood pressure and far more important than exposure to air pollution, they found.

Yet, the techno-irony:

Her team found some troubling evidence that Americans are becoming more isolated, and thus losing the support and care that love and friendship provide.
“For instance, trends reveal reduced intergenerational living, greater social mobility, delayed marriage, dual-career families, increased single-residence households, and increased age-related disabilities,” they wrote.
“More specifically, over the last two decades there has been a three-fold increase in the number of Americans who report having no confidant,” they added.
“Such findings suggest that despite increases in technology and globalization that would presumably foster social connections, people are becoming increasingly more socially isolated.”

Modern life seems in itself, a “feedback loop,” which creates or makes an environment or a situation far-even worse, as there’s more communication but far less friendship.
So, if you always dine alone on a menu of burgers and fries, you’re one screwed puppy.

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