Altruistic Love and Physical Health


Book Section

© 2007 by Oxford University Press, Inc. All rights reserved. This chapter examines the associations between altruistic or unconditional love and physical health. It looks at the mind-body relationship and reviews recent research on the effects of negative emotions on medical outcomes, forming the basis for a model by which altruistic activities could indirectly influence physical health by modulating emotions. It then reviews research on the relationship between altruism and physical health, examines the relationship between altruism and religion, and explores whether the increasingly recognized effects of religion on physical health might be partly mediated by altruism. Finally, the chapter considers the implications of these findings for clinical practice and suggests directions for future research in this area.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Koenig, HG

Published Date

  • September 1, 2007

Book Title

  • Altruism and Health: Perspectives from Empirical Research

International Standard Book Number 13 (ISBN-13)

  • 9780195182910

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195182910.003.0028

Citation Source

  • Scopus