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Social Connections for Cognitive Fitness

We human beings are social ani­mals. It seems intu­itive (even for intro­verts!) that social con­tact has ben­e­fits. Obvi­ous­ly we need oth­er peo­ple to ful­fill basic needs such mak­ing sure that our genes out­live. Maybe less obvi­ous­ly we seem to need oth­er peo­ple to main­tain pic_pascalepost.jpgade­quate lev­els of men­tal well being and moti­va­tion.

Even less obvi­ous­ly, social con­tact may help us improve our brain func­tions…

Men­tal fit­ness seems to depend on a large part on being con­nect­ed with oth­er peo­ple. For instance peo­ple with low social sup­port seem to be more prone to men­tal ill­ness (McGuire & Raleigh, 1986). In 2007, Glad­stone and col­leagues stud­ied 218 patients with major depres­sion and found out that low social sup­port, espe­cial­ly com­ing from the fam­i­ly, was asso­ci­at­ed with chron­ic depres­sion.

Mere­ly imag­in­ing lone­li­ness can neg­a­tive­ly affect our behav­ior…

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