Does Optimism Lead to Living Longer?

Optimistic people are more likely to live until their 85th birthday and beyond, according to a study spanning decades.

The trait was linked to living 11 to 15 percent longer, on average, and achieving what is known as “exceptional longevity”. Optimism appeared to lengthen life even when researchers accounted for potentially life-shortening factors like socioeconomic status, health conditions, diet, and whether a person smoked or drank.

The authors of the paper, published in the journal PNASdefined optimism as expecting good things to happen, and the belief that the future will be positive because we can control important outcomes. Exceptional longevity, meanwhile, was defined as hitting or surpassing the age of 85.

Excerpted from Newsweek

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