Thanksgiving is a time to reflect on all the things we are grateful for: family, food, good health. But did you know that the act of giving thanks can actually help you get good health? Here’s how.

Studies have shown that practicing gratitude can have lasting health benefits, like lower stress and anxiety and better heart health, specifically less inflammation and healthier heart rhythms. Being thankful can lead to better sleep and improved relationships. Gratitude could also help boost immunity and reduce the effects of aging to the brain.

As a form of generosity, gratitude allows us to both do good and feel happier when we train our brain to focus on things for which we are grateful. Forcing ourselves to thankfully reflect on even the smallest blessings can form a habit of optimism and thanksgiving that can last beyond just this holiday.

So, this Thanksgiving, start making gratitude a daily habit by being vocal about what you are grateful for, or begin keeping a gratitude journal. Even if you do not have good health, give thanks – for your health! Your heart will certainly thank you.

“Be thankful: Science says gratitude is good for your health,” Lauren Dunn, today.com, May 12, 2017.
“Gratitude — The Hidden Key to Health and Happiness,” Dr. Joseph Mercola, mercola.com, Aug. 10, 2017.