Pack your bags because it's time for that girls' trip you've been putting on the backburner. (Not that you ever really needed a reason to hang out with your girl squad.) It doesn't have to be fancy or elaborate. Even just a few days away from the norm with women you love and trust is enough to cleanse your sole. Even science is now telling us that we're healthier and happier for doing so.
Girls' trips release happy hormones.
One study published in Behaviourfound that hanging out with your friends can help release oxytocin, a neurotransmitter known as the love or trust hormone. More oxytocin is released when you're with your friends. That can make you feel happy, trusting, generous and friendly.
Good friendships may make you healthier.
In another study published in Personal Relationships, a researcher found a link between friendships and one's happiness and health across their lives. Good friendships contributed to better overall health. For older adults, a study found that friendships are an effective predictor of health and happiness compared to their relationship with family members. Those older adults who felt strain in their friendships were more likely to experience chronic illnesses while those supported by their friends were happier.
Surrounding yourself with people can make you live longer.
Other studies show that being around people is good for your health. A study found that having friendships can extend your lifespan. Results found that those with strong social relationships had increased chances of survival regardless of gender, health and age. Those without strong social relationships were at higher risk of premature death by 50 percent. So, social relationships should be taken seriously in regard to reducing the risk of mortality
Your squad may help ward of dementia.
Another study found that loneliness can increase your risk of dementia. The study was conducted at the Arkin Mental Health Care Center in Amsterdam. Using the data of 2,200 people ages of 65 to 86 living in the Netherlands, they were free of dementia at the beginning of the study. According to the reports, about one in five participants said they felt lonely; 1,000 lived on their own; 1,000 were unmarried and almost 1,600 said that they didn't have any social support.
Over the course of the study, those who were lonely were found to be 1.64 times more likely to develop dementia than others. They also discovered that 9.3 percent of people who lived alone developed dementia compared to 5.6 percent of people who were living with someone. This shows that people who are socially isolated were more likely to experience cognitive decline.
Sure, the scientific benefits of girls' trips are pretty awesome, but let's not forget some of the non-scientific reasons we love getting together with our girlfriends: relaxation, laughter, and memories.
What are you waiting for? Go text your girlfriends to set the date for your next trip!
- What Do Your Friends Mean to You? - HealthyWomen ›
- The Social Network: Building Friendships for Empty Nesters ... ›
- Why Friendships Are So Important - HealthyWomen ›
- With a Little Help from Our Friends - HealthyWomen ›
- Someone Who Likes You: The Importance of Girlfriends for Mental Health - HealthyWomen ›