How friendships can save our lives

Today, 30 July, is International Day of Friendship and whilst we all know the value of friends, we may not fully appreciate just how important these social interactions are for our health.

Talking face-to-face without relying on electronic devises helps us solve problems, provides a sounding board and is a source of laughter, but it may also be helping to save our lives.


How can being social make us live longer?

Many studies show that people who are disconnected from others are less likely to live longer than those that have close social ties regardless of age, gender and lifestyle.  Similarly, people who have suffered chronic illness are more likely to recover if they have a good social network.  

The New England Journal of Medicine in 1984 study found that among 2,320 men who had survived a heart attack, those with strong connections with other people were 75% more likely to live longer than those who lacked social connectedness.

Similarly, researchers at Duke University Medical Center found that even amongst people with serious medical conditions such as coronary artery disease, social ties helped them live longer.


Why we need friends

People who don’t have a good network of friends are more likely to experience stress which then affects their general wellbeing. It can lead to the body’s inability to turn off inflammation leading to other illnesses.

Friends are a source of fun and a release from day-to-day worries. This emotional support helps us to put things in perspective and helps us keep our mental health in check.


Connect to be healthy

Whilst many of us focus on diet and exercise as part of our healthy lifestyle, we forget to add ‘connection’ into the mix.  So to celebrate International Day of Friendship, let’s pick up the phone and talk to our friends to arrange a meeting and then let’s put the digital world to bed whilst we personally re-connect.


About Jung Shim

Jung Shim means ‘beautiful mind’. Our chanting, meditation and movement classes, as well as our energy treatments, help us to release physical and emotional pain. This allows us to regain our beautiful mind and true nature. In doing so we learn to open our heart and allow people into our lives. When we let go of our pain we see the best in ourselves and in others, and so are more capable of finding connection with people. We then enjoy the company of others more and others enjoy our company too.  Come and try our classes and treatments to see how they can help you. Call 020 7462 8811 to find out more.