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The Benefits of Gratitude

  • Health & Wellness


We all know that it feels good to say, "thank you." But did you know that gratitude can actually have a positive impact on your physical and mental health? That's right—being grateful has been linked with increased levels of happiness, better sleep, and improved heart health. In other words, grateful people are happy and healthy! Here's a closer look at the benefits of gratitude.

Gratitude Makes You Happier 

It's no secret that happy people are healthier people. Fortunately, there are lots of things you can do to increase your happiness—and one of them is practicing gratitude. The 75-year longitudinal Grant and Glueck studies conducted by George Vaillant and Sheldon Glueck has shown that people who express gratitude on a regular basis experience more positive emotions, feel more alert and alive, enjoy higher levels of well-being, and even sleep better! So, if you're looking for a way to boost your mood, start by counting your blessings.

Gratitude Helps You Sleep Better 

Getting enough quality sleep is crucial for maintaining your health. Luckily, gratitude can help with that too! A study in the Journal of Psychosomatic Research found that grateful people were more likely to report getting a good night's sleep—likely because they were less likely to dwell on negative thoughts before bedtime. So, if you've been having trouble sleeping, consider trying out a gratitude practice before hitting the hay. You might just find yourself snoozing through the night!

Gratitude Improves Your Heart Health 

Heart disease is the leading cause of death among Filipinas, but expressing gratitude can help lower your risk! Multiple medical practitioners have found that people were grateful had lower blood pressure and improved heart rate variability—both of which are markers of good cardiovascular health. So next time you're feeling down about your health, try writing out a list of things you're thankful for. It just might help get your heart back on track!

Gratitude Can Boost Your Immune System 

Researchers from the universities of Utah and Kentucky also found that grateful people have stronger immune systems and are less likely to get sick. One study found that participants who expressed gratitude had lower levels of inflammatory cytokines—proteins that promote inflammation in the body—which can lead to illness. 

Gratitude Encourages Us to Connect with Others 

Another reason gratitude may be beneficial is that it helps us connect with other people. When we express gratitude, we open ourselves up to receiving kindness and support from others. We also send the message that we value our relationships, which can make other people more likely to help us in return. Grateful people report having stronger relationships than those who do not express gratitude. In fact, one study found that couples who expressed gratitude toward each other felt more connected and were more likely to stay together over time.

The benefits of gratitude are clear: grateful people are happier, healthier, and live better. If you're looking for a way to improve your physical and mental health, start by expressing more gratitude in your life. Thanking those who have helped you, writing down what you're thankful for each day, and volunteering your time to causes you care about are all great ways to get started. What are you waiting for? Start reaping the benefits of gratitude today! 

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AUTHOR BIO Your friendly neighborhood Shero.

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