June 15, 2024

TOPEKA – If you decide you’d rather slather on the sunscreen rather than lighting up the cigarette, you’ve made a key decision in improving your long-term health. Kansas State University researchers found that people who think in the long-term are more likely to make positive health decisions. The study will appear in the January 2010 issue of the Journal of Personality and Individual Differences. The researchers asked college students to answer surveys about whether they think in the short term or the long term. Questions included “would you prefer 35 dollars today or 45 dollars in 35 days?” Researchers found that the subjects who gave future-minded answers in the initial surveys were more likely to report healthy behaviors in later surveys. The researchers next plan to study whether people’s perspective about the future is related to environmentally- responsible behaviors like recycling.

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