Jul 21, 2017

By Jane Brown

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The placebo effect is when beliefs can impact our health.

Now a new study may show us the negative effects of proclaiming yourself a “slacker.”

Researchers analyzed the habits of more than 61,000 Americans over a course of up to 21 years.

Those who perceived themselves as less active than their peers were up to 71 per cent more likely to die of all causes than those who perceived themselves as more active.

That’s even when that wasn’t objectively true after accounting for actual measured physical activity levels and other known determinants of mortality.

These results held across three major national cohorts and show how perceptions about health behaviours may play an important role in shaping health outcomes.

The research is in Health Psychology.

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