A German study found that grandparents who helped with caring for grandchildren live longer than those who do not, as reported by Reuters. While full time custody has a negative effect on health, occasionally helping with grandchildren or other members of the community can have a positive impact on health.
The study looked at 500 seniors over age 70. Participants completed interviews and medical tests every two years from 1990 to 2009. The overall finding was that over 20 years, the risk of dying was reduced by one-third for grandparents who helped with childcare. This positive correlation is not just limited to childcare, seniors who helped friends or others in their community were also found to live longer.
The study confirms what most grandparents have always known – it pays to spend time with your grandchildren. Not only can you be a positive influence on your grandchildren, but it can increase your life expectancy. What grandparent wouldn’t want that?