New Study: Culture Vultures Tend to Be Healthier


According to a new report published in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health, the more often people engage in cultural activities — whether they’re playing an instrument or attending a gallery opening — the greater their health benefits, regardless of socioeconomic status. Over 50,000 study participants in Norway responded to questions about their health, satisfaction with life, and levels of anxiety and depression; researchers found that cultural participation is good for the well-being of both genders, but that in men, “receptive cultural activities” (ie., stuff like visiting museums or watching movies) had more of a perceived health benefit. Also interesting: the more activities a person participated in, the happier they tended to be — likely thanks to the release of endorphins. The study’s authors say that while there is no guarantee that adding more culture will improve your health, “the results indicate that the use of cultural activities in health promotion and health care may be justified.” We’d be down with that, how about you? [via BBC]