With all of the devastation that we’ve been seeing on the news, from Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria to the tragic earthquakes in Mexico, there has never been a better time to help others. This week we’ve decided to dedicate our blog to discussing the health benefits of giving back. Whether it’s volunteering around Mount Pleasant and Charleston or donating money, supplies and time abroad, studies show that giving back does more than just help others—it helps your health!
Read on to get our favorite expert’s take on 3 ways that GIVING BACK helps your health!
Giving Back Lowers Blood Pressure
According to Health Magazine, “Helping out friends and family could be one way to boost your cardiovascular health this holiday season. A 2006 study in the International Journal of Psychophysiology found that participants who gave social support to people within their network had lower overall blood pressure and arterial pressure than those who didn’t. Not to mention those in the study who were more likely to give to others also reported they received greater social support in return.”
Giving Back Helps you Live Longer
The Huffington Post explains, “Researchers from the University of Buffalo found a link between giving and unselfishness and having a lower risk of early death. Published in the American Journal of Public Health, the findings show that helping others — whether it be by helping to run errands, watching their children or giving them a lift somewhere — is linked with a decreased mortality risk.”
Giving Back Makes your Brain Happy
An article in US News and World Report quotes Stephen G. Post, director of the Center for Medical Humanities, Compassionate Care and Bioethics at New York’s Stony Brook University: “The feel-good effects of giving begin in the brain. It’s called ‘giver’s glow.’ The response…is triggered by brain chemistry in the mesolimbic pathway, which recognizes rewarding stimuli. Philanthropy “doles out several different happiness chemicals…including dopamine, endorphins that give people a sense of euphoria and oxytocin, which is associated with tranquility, serenity or inner peace.”
DUFF’s own Do-Gooder
We also want to give a special shoutout to our ROCKSTAR trainer Eli Goldstein and his quest to help others. On top of spending his days training DUFFNATICS, he also finds time to give back. According to an interview he gave in Mount Pleasant Lifestyle Magazine, Eli found a way to enrich his life by donating his time to community service. “I didn’t know how to go about it, so a client gave me the idea to donate my time to help people who couldn’t afford to train.”
One of those clients is Jenn, a hard-working mother of a special-needs child. Read her account below:
We just want to thank Eli for his hard work and kind heart! He’s a great example for all!