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Acts of Kindness to Enhance Health and Well-being, Study Suggests

Oct, 2020

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According to a new research study, researchers have suggested that good act and helping others can be beneficial for health and well-being in individuals. Researchers also reported that not all good act can be beneficial, as it depends upon several factors such as type of kindness, age and gender of the giver, and other demographic factors.

Bryant P.H. Hui, lead author, stated, “Prosocial behavior such as altruism, cooperation, trust and compassion are all necessary ingredients of a harmonious and well-functioning society. It is part of the shared culture of humankind, and our analysis shows that it also contributes to mental and physical health.”

In this study, researchers initiated a meta-analysis of 201 independent studies, which involved 198,213 participants and focused on the association between acts of kindness and well-being. Overall, researchers observed moderate link acts of kindness and well-being.

Furthermore, researchers after several experiments observed that arbitrary acts of kindness, such as helping an elderly in carry groceries, were highly associated with overall well-being, in comparison to formal prosocial acts, such as volunteering for a charity.  In addition, researchers also observed a strong association between kindness and eudaimonic well-being that emphases on self-actualization, realizing one's potential and finding meaning in life, in comparison to kindness and hedonic well-being focusing on happiness and positive feelings.

Researchers also reported that effects differs by age, where young adults exhibited high levels of overall well-being, psychological functioning, and eudaimonic well-being, and elderly individuals reported higher levels of physical health. Moreover, women exhibited stronger association between acts of kindness and well-being, in comparison to men.

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