Summarized by Eileen Bell
Religion good for your health
Evansville IN Courier & Press 5Jun00 N6
By LEE BOWMAN, Scripps Howard News Service
EVANSVILLE, INDIANA -- Members of the Church of Jesus Christ of
Latter-day Saints have long known that the Word of Wisdom has helped
with health matters. Now comes word that stats show being an active
member of this Church, or other churches, also helps your health.
A study done by the (U.S) National Institute for Healthcare Research
indicates that people who participate in organized religion are 29
percent more likely to live longer.
Psychologist Michael McCullough led a team that analyzed 42
other studies done in the last 30 years. In all, data from 126
thousand people came under the magnifying glass.
McCullough says, "We think this analysis pretty much establishes
that this correlation of religious involvement and mortality exists,
but also points to the need for a lot more research to determine
just how and why it has an effect."
He says this is just the starting point for the research. "We have
miles to go before we have a good understanding of what's
happening. Compared to the research done on
smoking or gender and mortality, this is a tiny, tiny effort."
And he says it's not just a matter of people who are active in
their churches having a wider circle of friends. "It's a given
that in religious organizations, people find new sources of
social support that tends to make people healthier, but in
most of the studies, that social support is factored out, yet the
religious are still more likely to live longer."
For more information, you can check out the full article in the
new issue of Health Psychology, a journal of the American