Tags – Correlation between happiness and sickness

There’s no doubt about it, in this world of diverse and contrasting personalities and approaches, there are some people who seem much more able to just get on with life and those who struggle.

Whilst some appear never to have a day’s illness in their life, there are others who suffer with multiple conditions.

Whether this is down to luck or attitude is a difficult question. For instance, someone suffering from cancer or heart disease will have little success trying to override it by keeping smiling.

Science dictates that with such serious illness, medical treatment is the only antidote.

However, with general wellbeing, is there a correlation between happiness and sickness?

It’s surely undisputable that good health will bring happiness. However, can happiness bring good health?

A current trend of mindfulness and meditation has experts who will tell you that an improved outlook and reduced anxiety will lead to both better health and happiness. As such, it seems there must be some sort of connection.

Here are five points to consider.

1. Healthy Lifestyle

It’s fairly evident that if you’re happy, you’re more likely to lead a healthier lifestyle and take better care of yourself.

Whilst happiness can be brought about by external forces, the associated motivation to take exercise and eat and sleep better comes from within.

Consequently, physical and mental health will benefit.

2. Healthy Heart 

In contrast to raised blood pressure when angry and upset, contentment has a physical impact on the performance of your heart.

For instance, happiness has been found to reduce both your heart rate and blood pressure.

Benevolent feelings reduce stress and increase a sense of calm, both beneficial in terms of your heart rate. 

3. Immune System

Research has shown that being happier helps boost your immune system.

Consequently, this may help in reducing your chances of catching colds, the most common ailment.

In one study carried out, 81 University students were given a vaccination against hepatitis B.

Results determined that happier students were nearly twice as likely to have a high antibody presence.

4. Stress Management

Although an element of stress is good for performance, excess stress is harmful.

As such, increased stress causes higher levels of the hormone cortisol in the blood which can lead to various health conditions.

However, it’s been proven that levels of cortisol are biologically reduced by happiness as shown in a study carried out by Andrew Steptoe.

5. Pain Reduction

Another interesting find when measuring the effects of happiness in terms of health is a lower level of pain experienced.

For instance, chronic pain conditions such as arthritis have been researched in relation to experiencing happiness.

Results found that happier people reported lower levels of pain.

Moreover, those who reported their life had lasting meaning reported the lowest of all. 

Overall, it appears to be biologically proven that happiness can certainly have a positive effect on your health.

However, whilst happiness can prevent illnesses in some cases, it is sadly apparent, it isn’t a cure.

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