Being welcomed by your loving pet when you get home from a long day at work can have a therapeutic effect. You can just feel the stress and fatigue melting away. Research studies have revealed that owning a feathery or fluffy pal can do wonders for your physical and mental health. Find that hard to believe? Believe it, as this is supported by scientific evidence. This is because pets are a source of unconditional love and acceptance and they always hang on to you. Here is how your pets can make you healthier.
Reduce Cholesterol Levels
If your companion is a dog, your daily walks will help keep your cholesterol level in check, according to Missouri College of Veterinary Medicine. In a study conducted by the Australian National Heart Foundation it was noted that individuals who have pets, men in particular, have lower triglyceride and cholesterol levels.
Simply staying in the same place as your pet can have a consoling and calming effect on you. A potent and popular neurochemical called oxytocin is released when you take a mere look at your beloved pet, which evokes joy and pleasure. This in turn lowers cortisol which is a stress hormone.
Lower Blood Pressure
Don’t be surprised, but gently petting or caressing your kitty or pooch can bring down your blood pressure and it also pleases the pet; so it is a win-win situation. Studies at the New York University in Buffalo have shown that people who are on hypertension medication experienced a 50% drop in blood pressure response if they kept a dog or cat in their house.
Your dog is probably the best buddy for a stroll, may be better than a friend. In a University of Missouri study, it was revealed that dog walkers experienced more improvement in their fitness levels compared to people who walked with other people. In a different study it was found that dog owners walked about 300 minutes on a weekly basis on average, while those who did not own dogs walked only about 160 minutes per week. Therefore, people with dogs met the recommended level of physical activity.
Reduce Cardiovascular Disease Risk
Lower blood pressure, stress and cholesterol levels coupled with enhanced fitness can play a significant part in reducing risk of cardiovascular disease. This is supported by the American Heart Association, which, in 2014, concluded that owning a pet, especially a dog, reduces the risk and raises survival among patients.
Prevent Allergies in Children
It is healthy to have a pet in your childhood. According to a research published in Clinical and Experimental Allergy, it was noted that children who had exposure to pets before the age of 6 months were less vulnerable to allergic diseases such as eczema, asthma, upper respiratory infections and hay fever when they grew older. And children who live around farm animals, cats or dogs usually develop stronger immune systems and have a lower risk of contracting eczema or asthma.