7 Ways Reading Improves Health, According to Science

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From better sleep and increased happiness to a longer life in general, the benefits of reading go far beyond just a good story.

You know what's good for you? Reading.

Well, reading books, that is. I have recently joked (kind of) that I would add a decade to my life if I stopped reading the news for a while. But since I'm in the business of news, going without might prove challenging. However, now I have the antidote: Books! Maybe if I counter every news story about potential constitutional crisis with a few chapters of Edith Wharton, I will come out even!

Joking aside (kind of), the surprising ways in which we can boost our health are really pretty remarkable. For all the miracle supplements and kooky diets and exercise fads that we adopt to foster health and wellness, we've already got a terrific ally right there in the bookshelf. Consider the following benefits of reading.

1. It is linked to a longer life
2. It reduce stress
3. It promotes relaxation and sleep
4. It fends against Alzheimer’s, dementia and mental decline
5. It helps with depression
6. It boosts happiness
7. It builds social connections

And is this just a way for me to justify a good plop on the sofa with a book? No. Well yes, but still, it is true. And it is all backed by scientific research, the details of which you can glean in this infographic from Global English Editing.

reading makes you healthy

© Global English Editing

So there you have it. Embrace the books, get lost in a story, feel better ... your couch is waiting for you!