Being a Cat Lover Can Come With Its Own Set of Benefitsby Jane Chitty
Older women who love their one, two or even more cats are often ridiculed as being silly "cat ladies" and are frequently the subject of jokes. Wikipedia describes a cat lady as a cultural archetype or a stock character, often depicted as a woman, a middle-aged or elderly spinster, who owns many pet cats, the term can be considered a pejorative or may be affectionately embraced.
However, cat ladies may well be on the right track as cat ownership can be very beneficial to our health in so many ways. For example, scientists have found that cat ownership can mean a decreased risk for death due to heart attack and all cardiovascular diseases (including stroke).
Here is a long list of the many health benefits
- Cuddling your kitty can ease and reduce symptoms of anxiety and stress, releasing calming chemicals in the body to decrease those levels. A short petting and stroking session is often enough to relax owners.
- Decreases risk of stroke with studies having shown that cat owners are less likely to be at risk for having a stroke than any other pet owner - perhaps because of a cat’s lower-maintenance ownership. At the same time, there is a decreased risk of heart disease and heart attacks.
- There are therapeutic benefits too because having a cat can release oxytocin in your body. This is the hormone known for inducing feelings of love and trust. If cat owners are going through difficult times of grief, many have found that talking to their cat (and other pets) helps work out their feelings. In addition, children with autism were more likely to be less anxious and calm while petting a cat.
- In some cases, exposure to pet dander and fur in the house can result in an increased resistance to allergens, decreasing the risk for allergies and asthma while boosting immunity.
- Cat owners are known to have lower blood pressure than non-cat owners due to the calming presence they provide.
- Lowers those triglycerides and cholesterol levels that can contribute to heart disease and are symptomatic of type 2 diabetes as well as strokes, liver and kidney disease.
- Increases sociability as cat ownership provides a natural conversation starter and can enhance the owner’s ability to socialize.
- Owning a cat reduces feelings of loneliness as they can provide good companionship.
- The purring of a cat can help to heal bones, tendons and muscles. This is because a cat's purr creates vibrations at a frequency of 20-140 HZ, and studies have shown that frequencies in such a range have a positive effect on joint mobility after injury.
- 80 per cent of cat owners are said to sleep more soundly when they share the same bed - with these cat owners often preferring to sleep with their cats rather than their partners!
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