BEIJING, July 28 (Xinhuanet) -- Having good social relationships is not only important to your quality of life but can also adds years to your lifespan, U.S. researchers reported on Tuesday.
The benefits of having lots of healthy and fulfilling relationships is comparable to that of quitting smoking, according to the study published in the July issue of PLoS Medicine.
"A lack of social relationships was equivalent to smoking up to 15 cigarettes a day," psychologist Julianne Holt-Lunstad, who led the study, was quoted by the Reuters as saying.
To examine the effect of social relationships and death risk, scientists conducted 148 studies, covering 308,000 people regardless of age, gender or health status.
The finding indicated that people were 50 percent more likely to be alive if they had strong social relationships.
Having low levels of social interaction was equivalent to being an alcoholic, was more harmful than not exercising and was twice as harmful as obesity, the studies revealed.