NOV 24, 2015 1:10 PM PST

A Health Memo for the Holidays: Make Love Not War

WRITTEN BY: Xuan Pham

When it comes to your health, having a significant other may benefit your survival.

We all know that it feels good to be in love, why is this so? As it turns out, love and companionship trigger actual biological responses. Scientists have found that being in love floods your brain with feel-good chemicals like oxytocin and dopamine. At the same time, stress levels are reduced due to regulation by the hormone cortisol. In turn, being happy and stress-free lowers your risk for cardiovascular disease, promotes better recovery after treatment, and leads to an overall longer survival.

For those who are not in romantic relationships, the health benefits can still be reaped. Studies show that having a stable support group, such as family and friends, can positively affect the health outcome of an individual.

Human are naturally social creatures. Our success as a species has largely depended on relying on one another. So take a cue from our ancestors and make an investment in the relationships in your life. Your quality of life may benefit from it!
About the Author
I am a human geneticist, passionate about telling stories to make science more engaging and approachable. Find more of my writing at the Hopkins BioMedical Odyssey blog and at TheGeneTwist.com.
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