The study showed those that read more than 3.5 hours a week have a 23 percent chance of living a longer life.
If you’re a book lover then this will be good news: the more books you read and stories you immerse yourself in, the longer you will live according to a new study.
Researchers from Yale University have found a link between people who read a lot and life longevity compared to those people who don’t read as much or at all according to a report in The New York Times.
The team from the School of Public Health at Yale, analyzed data taken from a large study involving 3,635 people who answered questions on reading and the frequency to which they read books. They took into account factors such as sex, race, education levels, age, emotional states and marital status.
The data was divided into three main groups: people who read up to 3.5 hours per week, more than 3.5 hours per week and those that don’t read at all. There was a 12 year follow up period and the team found that those readers who read books for up to 3.5 hours were 17 percent less likely to die while the bookworms who spent more than 3.5 hours a week were 23 percent less likely to die after the 12 year period.
Book readers in general were more likely to live 2 years longer than those that didn’t. As yet, there has been no link between those that read physical books or those that read e-books but either way, reading has been linked in previous studies to economic well-being and better mental health.
Senior author of the study, Becca R. Levy, a professor of epidemiology at Yale, says people that read have a significant survival advantage compared to those that don’t.
“People who report as little as a half-hour a day of book reading had a significant survival advantage over those who did not read. And the survival advantage remained after adjusting for wealth, education, cognitive ability and many other variables.”
Details of the study were published in the journal Social Science and Medicine.