You may have suspected–but did you really know that your happiness and the love you have in your life directly affects your health and longevity?

We are social beings and having relationships with others–including pets helps us deal with life and (usually) reduce stress.

From A Womans Health Magazine we have these excerpts:

Pain relief

A 2010 study at the Stanford School of Medicine found that intense feelings of love had just as much impact on pain relief as did painkillers. Researchers believe this is because love activates the same areas of the brain pain medication does. It is thought that being in love triggers the release of dopamine, a feel-good hormone that helps reduce pain. While this study focused on new, intense feelings of love, another study has shown that being in a long-term relationship can also help reduce pain. This study, conducted by the University of California, involved 17 women in long-term relationships. The women were given shocks to elicit pain, both while looking at a picture of their loved one and while not looking at a picture. When the women were gazing at a picture of their significant other, the pain felt was significantly less intense. Being in a long-term relationship can elicit feelings of safety and being able to depend on another person, which can help reduce pain.

Lower blood pressure

It turns out that being in love really does involve your heart. A 2001 study published in Psychosomatic Medicine found that individuals had lower blood pressure when in the presence of their significant other. It is especially noteworthy that even individuals who had a poor relationship with their spouse had lower blood pressure, though the difference was less significant than in those who had a more positive relationship. This study, as well as many others, indicates that being in a relationship can help protect your heart and increase life expectancy, though more research is needed to sufficiently support this conclusion.

Reduced stress levels

Being in love causes the body to release feel-good hormones, including dopamine and oxytocin, which help ease stress. A 2008 study published by the University of Utah found that couples had lower levels of the stress hormone cortisol when living together and higher levels when they were apart. The study also showed that telephone calls between couples who were separated seemed to negate the effect of being separated. The important take-away here is that being in a loving relationship provides you with someone to support you and to talk to as a way to ease stress.

I’ve also been fortunate enough to have some intense experiences in the last few years with Unconditional Love–which is not just a philosophy or feeling, but intense energy in your chest you can feel which gives one this intense feeling of love and compassion for everyone around you. It’s really hard to explain–but I tried in my book “Love From the Heart”.
You can click on the image to learn more about this book:

What this has to do with longevity is that good relationships and other types of love including unconditional love seem to energize our immune system to ward off disease too.

This is why I made “Having Love in Your Heart” one of my 10 principles of personal longevity”

To learn more about my book “The 10 Principles of Personal Longevity” and various training and coaching options please click on the caps link below..

You should also consider signing up for our FREE ECourse on the 10 Principles to learn more about them in depth.