(FOX NEWS - OPINION) - The Journal of Social Psychological and Personality Science (SPPS) released a study last month demonstrating that religious people live longer. The study observed that “self-reported religious service attendance has been linked with longevity,” and confirmed this by examining obituaries from 43 U.S. cities. Researchers found that religiously affiliated people lived between 5.64 and 9.45 years longer than those who were not religiously affiliated.
The findings from SPPS are consistent with many other studies. A JAMA Internal Medicine study found that “women who went to any kind of religious service more than once a week had a 33 percent lower chance “than their secular peers of dying” during the 16 years following the research. Another JAMA study reported that women who attended religious services at least once a week were “associated with an approximately 5-fold lower rate of suicide” than those who never attend a service. A PLOS One study reported that people who attend religious services regularly experience less stress and were “55 percent less likely to die” over the next 18 years than those who did not attend.
Why do religiously active people outlive their non-religious peers? A recent article at The American Council on Science and Health attempted to provide an answer as they examined the SPPS findings:
“…‘the opportunities and incentives to volunteer and participate in other social groups provided by religious communities’ were in part responsible for the lengthening life-span. Those who might recoil at religious belief extending life might consider engaging in social activity and friendship as the real underlying correlation.”
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