According to researchers at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine and Yeshiva University, people who are optimistic, laugh a lot and are easygoing, may live longer.
The study analyzed 243 people with an average age of 97.6.
These people were part of a bigger study, called the Longevity
Genes Project that examined 500 Ashkenazi Jews ages 95 and older as
well as 700 of their offspring.
Dr. Nir Barzilai, director of Einstein's Institute for Aging
Research said that "When I started working with centenarians, I thought
we'd find that they survived so long in part because they were mean
and ornery. But when we assessed the personalities of these 243
centenarians, we found qualities that clearly reflect a positive
attitude towards life.”
Most of those examined, said Dr. Barzilai, “considered laughter
an important part of life and had a large social network. They
expressed emotions openly rather than bottling them up."
And in another larger study by Sven Svebak, at the Norwegian
University of Science and Technology, 54,000 people were tracked for
seven years. What Svebak found was that those who have a sense of humor
outlived those who don’t.
In addition, the survival edge was particularly large for
people who had cancer. The patients with a good sense of humor cut
their chances of dying by about 70% compared with adults with a poor
sense of humor.
So, once again science is documenting what the Bible told us
many moons ago that “A merry heart doeith good like a medicine.”
Originally published on Examiner.com on June 17, 2013