Your Active Social Life Could Help You Live Longer


Good news for extroverts: All that quality time you spend socializing with your friends, family members and even strangers just might help you live longer.

Susan Pinker, psychologist and the author of The Village Effect, joined HuffPost Live host Caroline Modarressy-Tehrani to discuss the current research that finds a strong correlation between social behavior and longevity.

"If you see people face to face, there's a biological cascade of events that happens, and we're finding out that these biological events, such as hormones that are released, help to protect your health," Pinker said. "We know now that, for example, men who have intimate relationships, who participate in teams or groups, are better protected by their social relationships than they are by medication after a heart attack or stroke. It's much more powerful than we ever believed before."

Pinker also explained how two types of social contact can help keep people healthy. Conversing with the variety of people you encounter on a day-to-day basis (including your favorite coffee guy) and nurturing tight familial relationships despite physical distance both offer wellness perks.

Additionally, regardless of where on the introvert-extrovert spectrum you fall, you are wired to socially connect to some degree. It's clear that mankind has always had an innate need for these types of interactions, but science is now able to offer an explanation as to why.

Watch the full HuffPost Live conversation in the video above to learn more about how your social interactions can affect your lifespan.

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