By: Dr. Stukes
Whenever we see someone helping another person in need, it fills us with happiness to see such acts of kindness in human nature. When we do it ourselves it can also make us feel great knowing that we helped someone else, but the affects and benefits from helping others isn’t just mentally – it’s physically.
Various studies have shown us that volunteering regularly can actually boost your mood and positively affect your physical health in a variety of ways. Helping out other people can help you live a much healthier life and to find out the science behind all of this, continue reading.
If you have ever volunteered to helping another person out or participate in doing something to raise money for a charity, you will know the rush and sense of achievement and happiness that comes afterwards. But there is a reason for it and that’s your mood-lifting neurotransmitter ‘dopamine’. Once you have completed your very kind task or event your brain will pump dopamine which puts you in what researchers call the ‘helper’s high’.
In those who carried out five small acts of kindness throughout the course of one day, every week for six weeks, a study found that those people felt a significant increase in mood.
Live for Longer
In 2013, there were 40 international studies carried out that discovered that volunteering could actually help you live a much longer life. Some of the evidence from these studies suggested that mortality could be reduced up to 22 percent.
Another study was completed that also suggested that seniors who completed regular volunteering were less likely to die up to 28 percent less than those who don’t volunteer. But it isn’t just the older generation who benefit from this, as a recent student in JAMA Paediatrics discovered that students in high school who volunteered to help others saw a decrease in their cholesterol levels.
Pain Levels Improved
People who suffer with chronic-pain are typically discouraged from volunteering more than people without chronic-pain as they may feel that they may be no good for helping anyone or that they may be in too much pain to take part. However, there have been reports that those who suffer with chronic-pain could see an improvement in their pain levels by volunteering to help those with similar conditions.
A study that was carried out in Pain Management Nursing found that volunteers with chronic-pain who took time out to lead support groups or make phone calls to check in on people, felt a drop in their pain levels and admitted that on a scale of 0 to 10 that their pain was around 6 and it dropped to below 4.
A further study in the journal Social Science & Medicine discovered that people who were living with multiple sclerosis and were offering their time to provide emotional support to other people who were suffering with MS were less likely to experience depression and/or anxiety.
Blood Pressure Improved
A study that took place in 2013 for the Psychology and Aging journal found out that adults who were aged 50 and over and volunteered around 200 hours of their time over the course of a year were less likely to develop hypertension up to 40 percent than those who don’t volunteer. Researchers believe that this is the case as being charitable and active may have stress-reducing effects.
Categories: alnorani charity initiative