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Study Shows Watching Videos Of Cute Animals Is Good For Your Health

Ah, self-care.
PHOTO: Getty Images/iStockphoto

Don't beat yourself up the next time you end up in a YouTube hole of cute animal videos. Because that counts are taking care of your health, apparently. We're serious, too. A bunch of researchers have found that watching animal videos reduces stress and anxiety.


The study, conducted by the University of Leeds, found out how much power cute animals really have. Just watching clips of these cute animals relieving stress. And, in the last five years, there's been a sharp increase in stress-related illnesses. So, this news definitely helps.

Researchers asked participants to watch a 30-minute slide show with images of dogs, quokkas, and more. The study part came in as the participants were asked to wear heart rate monitors for the duration of the slideshow.

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"Throughout the course of the session, heart rates and blood pressure fell across all individuals to a level that would be considered healthy and indicative of limited stress or anxiety," study co-author Dr. Andrea Utley said.

Nothing beats real animal interaction, however. "As with other research, it would appear that animals are able to reduce stress and anxiety in humans. It would appear that images appeal but video clips are more meaningful, and I would therefore expect that physical closeness would be even better," Dr. Utley added.

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Now, excuse us while we add 10 (or 50) adorable animal videos to our watchlist. Ah, self-care.