Why Having A Pet Makes You A Happier And Healthier Person
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Health and Wellness

Why Having A Pet Makes You A Happier And Healthier Person

The impact of animals on your physical and mental health

Why Having A Pet Makes You A Happier And Healthier Person

Sixty-two percent of American households have at least one pet. To many Americans, this furry friend is just like another member of the family. It's no doubt that our pets mean a lot to us, but did you know that they have actually been proven to boost your physical and mental well-being? This is true for all pets but in particular, cats and dogs.

Did you know having a pet is beneficial for your heart? Owning a pet is said to be tied to reducing your risk of heart disease. One of the primary causes of this is because pets get you moving. If you own a dog you're going to have to get outside and walk it on a regular basis, thus helping you get in daily exercise you might have otherwise missed. Studies have shown that taking a dog on regular walks puts you at less of a risk of obesity and other physical ailments as you age. Plus, getting outside increases the vital intake of vitamin D and increases bone strength.

The National Institute of Health did a study that focused on pet ownership with the elderly. It showed that those who made it a habit to take their dogs for walks on a regular basis had increased mobility and didn't tire out as quickly.

It's not just physical benefits that animals can yield, however. Pets are known to be a great source of comfort and can help lower stress and depression. Simply petting or holding a cat or dog can help lower your blood pressure and ease anxiety. Why is this? It's been shown that playing with animals actually increases serotonin and dopamine levels in the brain. These chemicals are related to stress release and happiness. Therefore, being with a pet when experiencing a panic attack or another stressful situation can actually help you recover more quickly.

The next time you're stressed about work or school and nothing seems to help calm you down, consider spending some time with a pet if you are able. You might be surprised how much better you feel.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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