June 16, 2009 --
It's doesn't have to be lofty or complicated, simply having a purpose in life may help you live longer. Researchers at Rush University Medical Center studied more then 1,200 older adults. Those who had a goal, something as easy as reading a series of books or volunteering, were half as likely to die within three years.
Other research has found that having a goal is crucial to maintain psychological wellness. But this study could be the first to look at purpose and longevity.
So what's the link? Researchers can't say for sure, but it could be that a greater sense of purpose may help multiple systems in the body function better.