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Grandparents Who Babysit Their Grandkids Live Longer

Lynne Versluys 21 Jan 2019

Science has proven that grandparents who babysit their grandkids frequently live longer.

Being A Grandparent Is Awesome

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It's safe to say that being a grandparent can be pretty awesome. You get all of the fun parts of being a parent without the frustrating elements. Plus, most of the time, you can send the kids home at the end of the day and sleep soundly in your own bends.

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A New Study

Aside from the fun aspects of being a grandparent, a new study shows that grandparents who babysit their grandchildren regularly actually live longer.

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The Berlin Aging Study

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Ronan Factora, M.D., of Cleveland Clinic conducted the study, which examined research from 500 people ages 70 and older, who took part in the Berlin Aging Study.

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The Link Between Activity And Health

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According to Dr. Factora, "We know that as you age, you want to stay physically active; you want to stay socially engaged; you want to be cognitively stimulated; and all those things allow you to age well."

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Some Care

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The study found that grandparents who provided some care lowered their risk of death for 20 years in comparison with those who didn't. The same statistics did not apply to grandparents who provided primary care to their grandkids.

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Doctor's Orders

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According to Dr. Factora, “there is a link between providing this care and reducing stress and we know the relationship between stress and a ​higher risk of dying. If providing care to grandchildren and others in need is one way that can actually reduce stress, then these activities should be of benefit to folks who are grandparents and provide this care to their grandkids.”

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The Problem With Retirement

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Studies have found that people still need the structure and responsibility of caring for others, which is often lacking after retirement. Babysitting regularly is the perfect antidote.

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Not Too Much Stress

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However, Dr. Factora explained that the right balance has to be maintained for optimal health.

"You want to make sure that you find that right balance between getting the positive benefits of doing enough of an activity to help those in need and avoiding doing too much and getting to the point where the activity makes one overly stressed."

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Keeping The Brain Healthy

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Keeping the brain young and the body active is extra important as you get older, and what is a better way to get that than by hanging out with your grandkids?

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