The Unknown Benefits of Hugging

MAN & WOMAN SUNSET“We need four hugs a day for survival, eight hugs a day for maintenance and twelve hugs a day for growth”, said Virginia Satir, an American psychotherapist.

LOVE COUPLEIt may sound crazy or exaggerated, however hugging is beneficial to both our mood and health.  A warm hug with a person that we love, overflows us with positive emotions, relaxes and invigorates us.  Just 10 seconds is enough to feel the difference, as the hug:

– Fights depression, loneliness, anger, anxiety, stress and any negative emotion, thanks to oxytocin, a hormone produced by our body when we hug.  However, as experts say, we should not hug people indiscriminately.  If two persons do not know each other or if the hug is not desirable by both, then oxytocin does not circulate in the blood and thus there is no benefit. Quite the opposite we would say…

HUG ME NOTE– Strengthens our immune system.  The gentle pressure on the sternum and the emotional charge this creates, stimulates the thymus gland of the brain, which regulates and balances the body’s production of white blood cells that keep us healthy.

– Is good for the heart, as scientific studies have shown that it can reduce high blood pressure, an important factor for cardiovascular disease.

HUG IN BED– Helps our relations.  Frequent hugging produces the hormones serotonin and dopamine, which help maintain harmony between both partners and build a good relationship.

– Teaches us to give and receive.  Hugs educate us how love flows both ways.

– Frees us.  When we hug someone, we automatically stop thinking about anything else.  The act of hugging overwhelms us, disconnects us from our thoughts and allows us to focus on our emotions.

Puppy-Love-Puppies-Picture– Relaxes the muscles and releases the tension from our body.  Hugs can also ease the pain by increasing circulation into the soft tissues.

– Helps us reach a state of zen.  A hug can connect us not only with another person, but also with our own heart, feelings and breathing.

Hugging-Mom– Finally, the value of hugging in a parent-child relationship is tremendous.  Experts point out that it is wrong not to hug our baby for fear of spoiling it.  Data from surveys reveal that hug and physical contact with both the mother and the father, can positively affect brain development, boost natural growth and in the long term to enhance the child’s self-confidence and sense of well-being, while it helps it to develop better relationships with people around him.

NIGHT HUGWith so many benefits that a hug offers us, we think it’s time to become more expressive with the people we love and do not underestimate its value, because by paraphrasing the well-known popular saying with the apple, we can say that “a hug a day keeps the doctor away”!

Hug everyday with the people you love …it’s good for you!

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