The Rabbit Effect

Mark from the Action for Happiness team shares a beautiful story about the importance of showing love and kindness to both others, and oneself.

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I'd like to share a life-changing story with you...

Some years back, scientists were feeding groups of rabbits an unhealthy diet to see how it affected their health. They were shocked to find that one group did much better than the others, despite eating the same food and being genetically identical.

What was going on?

Well, it turned out that one of the assistants was fond of rabbits and as well as feeding her group, she'd also been petting them and talking to them. And they were living longer as a result!

According to Dr Kelli Harding in her new book The Rabbit Effect, she was simply "giving them love and kindness". And what's true for rabbits turns out to be true for humans too...

"The hug you give your child or spouse makes a difference. Research shows that loving actions actually change our physiology".

- Mark and the Action for Happiness team 

Zahra Hulf

Project Manager , Lets reset

Zahra graduated from the University of Exeter in 2019, with a BSC in Psychology. During her third year of her degree, she conducted her dissertation on the differing parenting styles of new mothers, and the effects this has on the development of a child. She began working at Let’s Reset shortly after graduating, and acts as Project Manager at Let’s Reset. So far she has helped in the production of the Let’s Reset book, the launch of Let’s Reset, and the Let’s Reset workshops. Zahra has a keen interest in mental health, and alongside volunteering as a befriender at the Islington migrant centre, she also writes a blog about the issues women living in poverty face around the world every day.
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