Saturday, August 15th, 2015
Article on Sustained Happiness
An article was forwarded to me from the Toronto Star entitled: "'Want to be Happy for Life? Get Religion, Study Suggests.' Joining a church helps keep depression at bay, especially late in life, European researchers discover."
"Sarah Pullian Bailey from The Washington Post: A new study suggests that joining a religious group could do more for someone's "sustained happiness" than other forms of social participation, such as volunteering, playing sports, or taking a class."
A study in the American journal of Epidemiology by researchers at the London School of Economics and Erasmus University Medical Centre in the
"The church appears to play a very important social role in keeping depression at bay and also as a coping mechanism during periods of illness in later life." Mauricio Avendano, an epidemiologist at LSE and an author of the study, said in a statement, "It is not clear to us how much this is about religion per se, or whether it may be about religion per se, or whether it may be about the sense of belonging and not being socially isolated."
Researchers looked at four areas; volunteering or working with a charity; taking educational courses; participating in religious organizations, and participating in a political or community organization.
Of the four, participating in a religious organization was the only social activity associated with sustained happiness researchers found. The study analyzed 9000 Europeans who were over the age of 50.
The report also found that joining political or community organizations loses its benefits over time. In fact, the short-term benefits from those social connections often lead to depressive symptoms later on, researchers say...