A recent study suggests that volunteering can improve your cardiovascular health.
For the study, teenage volunteers were used which of course consisted of a control group and those that volunteered. The group of teenage volunteers helped out at an elementary school where they worked with the school children over a 10-week period.
The study indicated that the teens who gave of themselves were benefited by the act of giving and the positive emotions that resulted.
Just in case you’re thinking that the volunteers were just more physically active due to the activities involved with their volunteering, the study organizers calculated for that too. The potentially increased physical activity may have played a small part, but the study also looked at factors like the teens’ moods, self-esteem and sense of altruism. So, it wasn’t just being more active that improved their cardiovascular health.
What I would be curious to know is how an attitude held during volunteering or other acts of giving would effect the person. Would those performing charitable acts out of a sense of duty benefit the same as those who perform charitable acts because they want too.
What I find interesting is that the ancient wisdom of the Bible teaches that serving and giving are key components to happiness. Since the Bible claims to be the Word of the One who created us, it just might have some good instructions for living life!
After all, this scientific study has indicated that volunteering can boost our health. I don’t’ think we should limit it to volunteering, but any selfless act of giving. I’m sure they would all yield similar positive results.
It should be noted, though, that while this study was just done over a 10-week period, you don’t want to limit yourself. Make selfless giving a part of your life, something that you do regularly and not just once a year–though that’s better then never.
[blockquote align=”” cite=”Proverbs 17:22″ color=”” bcolor=”eb92e7″ ]A merry heart doeth good like a medicine…[/blockquote]