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Digital Subscriptions > Healthy Magazine > August 2019 > ID your emotional comfort blanket

ID your emotional comfort blanket

In moments of distress, it’s not just kids who need a comforter – here’s how you too can benefit from having a few selfsoothers in your back pocket

Feeling stressed? Your greatest tool could be surprisingly close to home. Researchers gave 40 couples a challenging task. Half the couples tackled the task alone, as individuals; the other half did it while holding their spouse’s hand. An infrared camera measured pupil diameter, which is a direct signal of stress response. Both groups showed signs of stress during the task, but the group with spouse support calmed down significantly sooner, allowing them to work on the task at reduced stress levels. This also supports previous research that showed simply calling your mum provides as much ‘chemical comfort’, as a hug, by helping us to release the hormone oxytocin, so when facing a challenge, sign up your loved ones for support.

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About Healthy Magazine

Introducing the brand new healthy! We’ve got a fresh new look and have spruced up our content, including challenging new franchises, a dedicated vegan section and inspiring real life stories. Our central theme this issue is mental wellbeing – a challenge that doesn’t seem to be getting any easier, even as we are getting better at talking about it. Hopefully our ‘safe space’ is just that – somewhere you can explore and develop your own mental health. We’ve also investigated the gender disparity in football, explored the growing (though illegal) trend of microdosing, and chatted to chef turned wellness advocate Lorraine Pascale about her own mental wellbeing journey. Plus, we’ve brought in an expert panel to review all our content, ensuring you’re getting the very best and latest health, fitness, food, beauty and wellness advice. Find all this and more in the new issue of healthy