Every pet owner knows how much joy and happiness their cats bring them. After a long and stressful day, patting a cat can almost feel therapeutic. Scientists are becoming increasingly aware of this phenomenon and there is sizeable evidence that it isn’t just a placebo effect. After spending time with a cat, the serotonin levels in your blood significantly increase. Serotonin boosts the feeling of well-being and lowers the blood pressure and cholesterol levels. So, here are five health benefits of owning a cat.
The study from the University of Minnesota shows that cat owners are 30 to 40 percent less likely to die from cardiovascular diseases. The study examined the heart conditions of patients throughout several decades and has shown that there’ a direct correlation between owning a cat and not having any heart troubles. Dog owners of similar age and lifestyle didn’t benefit as much as cat owners did. The results apply to most of the heart problems, such as stroke, heart failure, and chronic heart disease. This is true even when you take into account risky behavior, such as smoking or bad diets.
Young parents are often worried about how their cats will get along with the baby. There’s really no need to stress about it. First of all, every kid should grow up with a pet they can cuddle with. There are also numerous health benefits of exposing children to cats early on, as well. Studies show that kids who have played with cats in early childhood have a much lower chance of developing allergies. The same goes for respiratory problems. Children who are used to having cats around are far less likely to develop asthma.
Stress and anxiety
Having a cat has many beneficial psychological effects, but stress relief is the most prominent one. All you need to do is take care of your feline, with an exceptional can of Royal Canin cat food and some affection and the cat will make you feel more relaxed and in control. The benefits go beyond helping you calm down after a tough day. Those who suffer from anxiety report that their symptoms are much more manageable since they got a kitten to play with. The same goes for other mood disorders, such as depression. Having a cat helps with the immediate symptoms and the overall condition.
Autism is a condition marked by the difficulty (or even inability) to participate in social interactions. Recent evidence shows that cats can be instrumental in helping those dealing with this condition learn how to communicate more effectively. A French study has concluded after experimenting with 260 families that having a cat increases the level of social interactions an autistic child can handle. Specifically, getting a pet after the age of five has shown to be the most effective in reducing the symptoms of autism and allows for a more rich and dynamic social life.
Cat owners (especially women) have stated that they prefer sleeping with their pet than with their partner. There might be a reason for this – according to one study, 41 percent of people say they sleep better when their cat is beside them. On the other hand, 20 percent acknowledges that a cat can cause a disturbance during the night. There have been reported cases of patients with severe cases of insomnia finding relief after getting a cat. The causes of this type of insomnia are usually psychological and that’s probably why the cats have helped.
Having a cat to take care of and play with isn’t just fun – it also helps with numerous health issues and helps you lead a less stressful and happier life.