Reading a book could help you live longer


Reading offers countless benefits. It helps us to learn new things, teaches analytical thinking skills, improves focus, reduces stress, sparks creativity, etc. And while we certainly don't need another reason to make time for reading, a new study published in the September 2016 issue of Social Science & Medicine may have just provided the best incentive to finish that book you put down and haven't finished...a longer life.

Researchers from Yale University School of Public Health studied 3635 participants and, “examined whether those who read books have a survival advantage over those who do not read books and over those who read other types of materials, and if so, whether cognition mediates this book reading effect.” (Social Science and Medicine). The data on reading habits was gathered from participants, who were over 50 years old, as part of a larger Health and Retirement Study.

After analyzing the data, researches discovered something interesting, finding that, “...people who read books regularly had a 20% lower risk of dying over the next 12 years compared with people who weren't readers or who read periodicals. This difference remained regardless of race, education, state of health, wealth, marital status, and depression.” (Harvard Medical School)

Put Simply, researchers found that those who read books tend to live longer, and while this only one study, the many benefits of reading are well known and research like this only adds more incentive to take time to read.

Sources:

Social Science and Medicine: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0277953616303689

Harvard Medical School: http://www.health.harvard.edu/healthy-aging/reading-books-may-add-years-to-your-life


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