This article originally appeared and was published on AOL.com
If you want your parents to live a long and healthy life, there’s actually a very simple way you can contribute to their longevity — spending time with them.
A new study out of the University of California at San Diego discovered a large — and particularly sad — contributing factor towards declining health in one’s old age: loneliness.
Researchers tracked about 1,600 adults with a median age of 71 and, after taking into account “demographic variables, socioeconomic status, living situation, depression, and various medical conditions,” they came to a surprising conclusion.
Almost 23 percent of the people who reported loneliness died within 6 years of the study, as compared to only 14 percent of those who reported having adequate interaction with others.
That’s right — by avoiding spending time with your parents and grandparents for all these years, you might’ve inadvertently shaved years off their lives.
How much sadder than that does it get?
While this may not seem like the biggest percentage difference in the world, if we could possibly increase our parent’s odds of survival by 9 percent just by hanging out with them more often … well, the choice seems obvious.
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