We know that being Thankful is good for the soul -- but it's also good for the rest of us too. Medical research reveals a whole series of ways that thankfulness improves mental and physical health.
Gratitude Lowers Inflammation
Gratitude can do more than build character—it could also help to combat inflammation, according to recent research.
A 2021 study published in the journal Brain, Behavior, and Immunity found that regularly expressing thankfulness lowers biomarkers of inflammation. There is growing literature on the reinforcing relationships between positive emotions, prosocial behavior, and physiological processes related to physical health.
Saying thanks is good for you.
Grateful People Sleep Better
A 2020 systematic review of 19 scientific studies of gratitude confirmed a "strong relationship" between gratitude and improved sleep quality.
"Highly grateful individuals have lower symptoms of depression, which in turn leads to fewer pre-sleep worries, resulting in better-perceived sleep quality."
Thankfulness Improves Mental Health
A 2023 analysis of 64 randomized clinical trials found that gratitude ‘interventions’ [recommended activities that promoted expressions of thankfulness] increased patients' gratitude, improved mental health and mood, and reduced anxiety and depression symptoms.
Research consistently finds that gratitude must be practiced proactively. As one team of researchers noted, “Gratitude is … not necessarily conditioned to good times, making it possible to maintain the feeling and feel good, even during negative experiences or most difficult moments.”
God has known this about us for a while – He built it into our makeup. The Bible mentions giving thanks more than 80 times.
Thanksgiving is a great time for remembering the One who truly deserves our thanks!
"It is wonderful to be grateful and to sing your praises, LORD Most High!
It is wonderful each morning to tell about your love and at night to announce how faithful you are.
I enjoy praising your name to the music of harps,
because everything you do makes me happy, and I sing joyful songs.
You do great things, LORD. Your thoughts are too deep...
You have given me the strength of a wild ox, and you have chosen me to be your very own.
They [Your people] will take root in your house, LORD God, and they will do well.
They will be like trees that stay healthy and fruitful, even when they are old.
And they will say about you, "The LORD always does right! God is our mighty rock."
(Psalm 92:1-5, 10, 13-15)