Fresh off his accidental superfood find, everyone’s favourite raptor-wrangler may have coincidentally stumbled on yet another major health benefit, thanks purely to his lifestyle choices and personal beliefs. Mr. Pratt is a deeply religious man, and according to fresh research from Ohio State University, his affiliation with the church is likely to add up to 10 years to his lifespan.
Pratt has been openly vocal about his devotion, after finding comfort in religion in his teen years.
"This guy came by and was like, 'What are you doing tonight?' I was like, 'Oh, I dunno...' So he's like, 'Will you fornicate tonight?' I was like, 'I hope so.' 'And drugs and drinking?' It's like, 'Most likely, yeah. Probably all three of those things. I mean, at least two of them, possibly all three,'" Pratt said in a 2014 interview with Esquire magazine.
"He was like, 'I stopped because Jesus told me to stop and talk to you. He said to tell you you're destined for great things.' My friends came out, and I was like, 'Hey, I'm gonna go with this guy.' I gave my soul to Jesus within, like, two days. I was stuffing envelopes for his organisation, Jews for Jesus."
The story goes that within a month of the encounter, Pratt was discovered by a director, and the rest is Hollywood history. However it’s his future that will apparently benefit the most from his Sunday rituals.
“Being healthy doesn’t just mean going to the gym and eating well,” said author of the study Laura Wallace. “Our social worlds have such a large influence on our health as well. Religion is clearly one of these factors that makes a big difference.”
Wallace and her team analysed over 1500 obituaries in a metadata analysis that covered 43 cities in the United States. The results, published in Social Psychological and Personality Science, found that religious people lived 5 years longer than the non-religious on average, with some cities reporting a 10 year average increase in life expectancy.
While the benefits of religion were not extremely conclusive based on the raw data, Wallace suggests the benefits come down to social connections and meditative practices.
“Our research suggests that, in part, this is due to the opportunities that religion provides to make social connections and give back to the community,” said Wallace when talking to PsyPost.
“Religions often promote stress-reducing practices through meditation or prayer, which has been associated with improved health. Understanding additional reasons that religion can influence health is an important question for future research.”
The study didn’t suggest that one religion experienced greater benefits from religious devotion more than another, but rather their common practices were prime factors in the reported benefits.