Being kind to strangers can make you live longer, according to science


Online trolls are shaking at the news that being kind to strangers can make you live longer.

Spreading kindness not only makes the people you’re kind to happier but also yourself, according to scientists.

It’s called a ‘Helper’s High’ and it works on the idea of altruism – disinterested and selfless concern for the well-being of others.

Feel-good chemicals flood your body and give you a temporary high.

The chemicals are serotonin (which heals wounds, helps you relax and makes you feel good), endorphins (which reduce pain) and oxytocin (which reduces blood pressure).

Other studies suggest being kind to others can minimise stress, improve depression, reduce the risk of cognitive impairment and contribute to a sense of belonging, which is a key contributor to a healthy, longer life.

The news comes about after Random Act of Kindness Day on Monday (17 February).

The group urge people to become RAKtivists (random acts of kindness activists) to try to change the world.

They state:

The thing about kindness is that it’s just about the only thing in the world that doubles when you share it.

Their aim is for one random act of kindness to spread throughout the world.

Suggestions on how to be a kinder person include:

  • Holding the elevator for someone
  • Spotting a coffee for a stranger
  • Giving your neighbour a hand with their groceries
  • Or even just smiling… and meaning it

So what are you waiting for?


More: 10 random acts of kindness that prove the world is still good

More: These stories about acts of kindness from strangers will restore your faith in humanity

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