Eating fruits and vegetables and exercising lead to a happier life

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Making everyday lifestyle choices that deliver long-term, not immediate benefits rather than ones that provide instant satisfaction lead to happier lives, new research shows.

Researchers at the University of Kent and the University of Reading in the UK examined how delayed gratification and choices in everyday life can impact a person’s happiness.

They found that decisions that required instant happiness hurt a person as a whole, while making decisions that may not be as fun in the present, but that contribute to future health, lead to more happiness. .

For example, exercising regularly or eating a healthier diet may not be as immediately satisfying as other choices, but is more beneficial for overall happiness.

The research adds to a plethora of studies that show that a healthier lifestyle leads to a more fulfilling life.

Exercising and eating healthier are decisions that can delay gratification, but lead to an overall happier life, new study finds (file image)

The researchers, who published their findings in the Journal of Happiness Studies, gathered data dating back to 2009 and more than 14,000 UK residents were included.

“Little attention has been paid to the impact of these changes on individual well-being,” the team wrote.

“In particular, should these changes be seen as an abandonment of current pleasures and therefore a reduction in well-being or as a greater raison d’être and therefore greater satisfaction with our life?

“There has been an increasing push towards veganism and vegetarianism and there has been a shift towards the use of bicycles, walking, etc., largely because of environmental concerns.”

Participants were asked about their daily lifestyle choices, including what they ate and the activities in which they participated.

They were also asked what their mental state was and how happy they felt at the time.

Finally, they were asked questions that allowed researchers to understand how well people thought they had over their own lives.

The team found that people with higher incomes are more likely to make healthier decisions, like eating fruits and vegetables and exercising regularly.

There was also a connection between making these healthier lifestyle choices and feeling like you had more control over their life and, out of virtue, feeling happier with their life choices.

“Behavioral nudges that help self-planning to reinforce long-term goals are likely to be particularly helpful in maintaining a healthy lifestyle,” said University of Kent researcher Dr Adelina Gschwandtner. who led the study, in a statement.

“If a better lifestyle not only makes us healthier but also happier, then this is clearly a win-win situation.”

Eating fruits and vegetables and exercising lead to a happier life

There have been numerous studies linking healthier eating to more happiness, but researchers believe they have the first one that finds clear causation (file photo)

Researchers believe that more and more people are starting to make simple changes in their lives that can also lead to more happiness.

“There has been a bigger shift in recent years towards healthier lifestyle choices,” University of Reading researcher Professor Uma Kambhampati said in a statement.

“Establishing that eating more fruits and vegetables and exercising can increase happiness while providing health benefits is a major development. “

There have been a variety of previous research that has found a positive correlation between eating healthy and being happier.

Similar studies also exist linking regular exercise to a healthier lifestyle.

The English researchers note, however, that these studies only show a correlation, whereas this study establishes a causality through the concept of delayed gratification.


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