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It's actually better to give than take: Study

Posted on Feb 23, 10:19PM | IANS

London, Feb 23 : Age-old wisdom suggesting the joy of giving is far better than receiving has now been established by a new study by researchers from Simon Fraser University in Vancouver.

The study using data from Gallup from a global survey of 234,917 responders found people all over the world experienced more happiness when spending on others than when spending on themselves. The findings held true from poverty-stricken Uganda to nations in the wealthy West, Daily Express reported Saturday.

For the study, the researchers tested the idea with an experiment in which they gave 200 students from Canada and South Africa a small amount of money and told them to either buy treats for themselves or for a child in hospital.

The students reported higher levels of well-being after purchasing a goody bag for a sick child than when buying one for themselves.

"The findings provide the first evidence that the warm glow of spending on someone else rather than on oneself may be a widespread component of human psychology," said Lead author Lara Aknin.

"From an evolutionary perspective, the emotional benefits that people experience when they help others acts to encourage generous behaviour beneficial to long-term human survival."