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“Bibliophilia (people who love books) is good for your health: A new study suggests that people who read books regularly may add nearly two years to their lives. Researchers at Yale University examined the reading habits of 3,635 people over 50 and found that the ones who buried their noses in a book for more than 3.5 hours each week—or 30 minutes a day—were 23 percent less likely to die over the course of the 12-year study, reports the Christian Science monitor. Even after variables such as health, education, and income were taken into account, bookworms were 17 percent less likely to die over the same period than their non-reading peers. It’s unclear why reading is associated with this “survival advantage,” but the researchers suggest delving into novels promotes cognitive processes, such as empathy and emotional intelligence, which can boost longevity. Unfortunately, reading magazines and newspapers may not provide the same benefit. “’We uncovered that this effect is likely because books engage the reader’s mind more,’” says researcher Avni Bavishi, “’providing more cognitive benefit, and therefore increasing the life span.’”
This fascinating quote is from the Health & Science section of THE WEEK September 2, 2016.
At last: Something that’s really fun is also good for us! Read on!