3 Health Benefits to Practicing Gratitude Daily
Thanksgiving is this Thursday, and it is a time of family, friends, food, football, and reflecting about the things in life that make us grateful. I have a ton of things to be grateful for this year. My family and friends always make me thankful to have them in my life. I am grateful that I have necessities like shelter and food, and I get to live in an amazing country. I love what I get to do every day for “work,” and I am grateful that I have just hit the one year mark in serving patients in Montgomery & Bucks County, PA at Radiant Life Chiropractic! There’s also the less serious gratitude for the success of teams like the Eagles and Sixers this year. Sorry, I like sports!
However, I think it is important to be consciously grateful throughout the year instead of just around Thanksgiving. This year, I have made it a focus to practice gratitude daily. I have a group of friends that keeps each other accountable to come up with at least one thing we are grateful for each day. It is a great way to start the morning. I also have implemented gratitude into my morning meditation. Why would I do this? There are just too many researched benefits of gratitude to not do it. Here are 3 big health benefits to practicing gratitude:
- Improved mental health: Gratitude decreases many toxic emotions, ranging from envy and resentment to frustration and regret. Robert A. Emmons, Ph.D., a leading gratitude researcher, has conducted multiple studies on the link between gratitude and well-being. His research confirms that gratitude effectively increases happiness and reduces depression. Gratitude has also been shown to increase self-esteem and empathy and decrease stress!
- Improved physical health: Grateful people experience fewer aches and pains, and they report feeling healthier than other people, according to a 2012 study published in Personality and Individual Differences. Not surprisingly, grateful people are also more likely to take care of their health. They exercise more often and are more likely to proactively consult with health professionals.
- Improved sleep: Sleep is an issue for many new patients that come in to the office. Patients often are not getting proper quality, quantity or both. Something as simple as writing down a list of things you are thankful for at the end of the day can also help people sleep better. A 2009 study in the Journal of Psychosomatic Researchfound that those who expressed gratitude more often slept better and longer than those who didn’t.
In addition to the things that I listed before, I am extremely grateful for my good health, but I also work to create good health. I eat consciously, exercise, get adjusted, and meditate to relieve stress. Without my health, I wouldn’t be able to enjoy any of the other things in my life for which I am grateful. If you or anyone you know is dealing with any health issues and is committed to finally making a change, then schedule an appointment and let us help you on your journey to better health! You’ll be grateful to know a healthier you!