Time, money and wellness

Making charitable donations and volunteering may boost heart health

Paying it forward could offer health dividends, a new study suggests. Researchers with the University of British Columbia gave 128 adults $40 a week for three weeks, then told one group to spend it on themselves and another group to spend it on other people. Among participants diagnosed with high blood pressure, spending on others reduced blood pressure significantly over the course of the study, author Ashley Whillans wrote in The Washington Post. “Critically, the magnitude of these effects was comparable to the benefits of interventions, such as anti-hypertensive medication and exercise.”

Whillans also notes that past research has linked other forms of helping others to improved physical health. So, if you’re short on cash, consider donating your time, possessions, talents—heck, even your blood.