1. REDUCED BLOOD PRESSURE AND RISK OF HEART DISEASE It’s proven that hugs lead to less stress; after hugging, there is a reduction in your body’s cortisol level. Cortisol is the hormone associated with stress. Less stress equals lower blood pressure, which significantly reduces your risk of heart disease.

2. OXYTOCIN INCREASE Hugs increase oxytocin – the “bonding” hormone. In a study, when couples hugged for 20 seconds, their levels of oxytocin increased. Those in loving relationships had the highest increases.

3. STRENGTHENS SOCIAL BONDS Hugs symbolize trust and compassion. Giving someone a hug has the potential to make them feel more comfortable around you in the future, to trust you more, and to make them feel that you are truly on their side.

4. IMPROVES MENTAL HEALTH Hugging, like therapy or yoga, can help clear your mind and make you happier. But, what’s more, is it can even strengthen your mind long-term. Hugging  and touch has been shown to reduce symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease, such as restlessness, pacing, vocalization, searching and tapping.

5. HUMAN TOUCH IS IRREPLACEABLE In the same way a massage can deliver the healing, happy benefits of  human touch, a hug can really do a body good.