Which People Live Longer, the Optimists or the Pessimists? Science has the Answer

Which people do you think live longer, the ones who are optimists by nature, or the pessimists? Scientists now have the correct answer.

A team of researchers at Boston University in the United States has made an impressive discovery about human longevity after studying more than 200 people. The experts found that optimistic people live longer and healthier lives than pessimists because they experience fewer stressful events over the decades.

Although the study focused on observing 233 older men over a period of up to 24 years, the researchers say it could also apply to women. The study started in 1986, according to the Daily Mail.

The Optimists Live Longer Than The Pessimists

"Stress is known to have a negative impact on our health. By looking at whether optimistic people handle day-to-day stressors differently, our findings add to knowledge about how optimism may promote good health as people age," said Dr. Lewina Lee, from Boston University, the researcher who led the study.

"This study tests one possible explanation, assessing if more optimistic people handle daily stress more constructively and therefore enjoy better emotional well-being," Dr. Lewina Lee explained.

At the start of the study, which began in 1986, men completed a questionnaire that assessed their level of optimism. Then, from 2002-2010, they were asked again several times about daily stressors and their moods on eight consecutive evenings.

The results showed that the more optimistic men not only did not report a negative mood but said they had a more positive one.

The Conclusion Of The Study

In the study published March 7, 2022, in The Journal of Gerontology in the United States, researchers announced that "our findings from a sample of older men suggest that optimism may be associated with more favorable emotional well-being in later life through differences in stressor exposure rather than emotional stress response."

Thus, the physicians argue that "optimism may preserve emotional well-being among older adults by engaging emotion regulation strategies that occur relatively early in the emotion-generative process."

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