Contributed by – Preksha Buttan
All of us love a long, warm hug. After all, it’s the best way to show someone that they are important to you, that you care about them and that you love them. No matter how you are feeling, hugs can instantly make you forget all your worries. Since hugs are so powerful we thought that today, on International Hug Day, we’ll look at the top 5 reasons why hugs are important for your body and mind
Happy hormones are released
That feeling of joy you get after a hug is actually your brain releasing a host of chemicals in your body of which dopamine and oxytocin are the most important. Dopamine makes you feel motivated and improves your concentration. Whereas oxytocin creates trust and strengthens the relationship. So the longer you hug the happier you get.
Stressed about that exam or that presentation or about your hair loss, whatever be your stress, getting a long, warm hug can make you feel better instantly. And there is a science to prove it, generally, you feel stressed when levels of the stress hormone called cortisol are high in your blood. When you hug, the happy hormones dopamine and oxytocin help in reducing this chemical in your blood and thus, get you to de-stress.
Immune system gets stronger
Being stressed or worried can wreak havoc with your immune system as well. That happens because immune system functions are reduced when you are stressed. Hugs can strengthen your immune system as they are stress-reducing. And a stress-free mind with the healthy immune system means that you’ll be less prone to illness.
Heart health is benefitted
Hugging and holding hands makes you feel loved and appreciated; well, now there is one more reason to do it. According to this study, holding hands and hugging can be healthy for your heart. In the study, people were divided into two groups. Individuals in group one were holding their partner’s hands and were hugging but the other group didn’t do either. And it came out that the individuals of the first group had reduced blood pressure which promotes a healthy heart.
Regular hugs can help you de-stress and be happy. This, in turn, means that you feel more secure in your environment, your relationships and just life in general. A happy person is generally more confident in his skin and has a better outlook towards life.
A family therapist, Virginia Satir once said that in a day you need four hugs for survival, eight for maintenance and twelve for growth. We agree that twelve hugs a day could seem impossible but you can always find more and more reasons to hug your loved ones. So, never shy away from hugging.
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