(WellnessPursuits.com) – Do you want to live longer? Of course, you do! Would you rather add years to your life without going to the gym, eating kale and saying no to your favorite sweets? Heck yeah! While you may still have to eat well and pursue a healthy lifestyle to rack up the years, it seems that some life-boosting things are actually fun and easy to do.
Activities for a Longer Life
How many times a year do you go to a concert? The answer might add years to your life. A new study published in the British Medical Journal (now called The BMJ) has shed light on the health and longevity benefits of engaging in receptive arts. These include concerts (as well as opera and theater), museums and art galleries. The observational study followed 6,710 British adults aged 50 and older for a period of 14 years. The results are shocking:
- 47.5% of participants who never went to arts events passed away.
- 26.6% of those who went infrequently passed away.
- 18.6% of those who went frequently passed away.
Now, don’t let these bleak statistics scare you. It’s a bit much to take in, but it can also be inspirational. People who frequent the arts seem to live longer than those who don’t!
The Arts and Health Benefits
Researchers are unsure why people who frequent the arts live longer, but they did uncover some benefits that may partially explain it. The arts, for example, alleviate stress and depression. The arts also make you get up, get out of the house and socialize, all of which can help you live a longer, more fulfilling life.
On a spiritual, inspirational level, the arts can give you a greater sense of purpose and spur you to look outside yourself and/or reach for more. You will also be more creative and imaginative, which could help you live a happier life.
How Much Art Do You Need?
One could argue that there is no such thing as too much art. But, if you want specifics, the study was broken down into three categories of arts engagement: never, infrequently and frequently. Never means just that: never. People who infrequently engaged in the arts did so once or twice per year. People who engaged frequently did so at least once every few months. So, you don’t have to go out a lot to get the most benefits. A concert, art gallery or museum visit once every few months will do it.
Regularly engaging in receptive arts activities can lower your risk of dying. And the best part? The more frequently you go, the lower your risk gets. The arts also provide many health and cognitive benefits that could improve your quality of life.
~Here’s to Your Healthy Pursuits!
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