A UCLA study has noted that when women were stressed, they came in to work, cleaned the work space, had coffee, and bonded with other female coworkers. When men were stressed, they holed up somewhere on their own and did not interact with coworkers. Interestingly, nearly 90% of the stress research has been with males. With this new research, the fact that women respond to stress differently than men has significant implications for our health

The study also noted that when the hormone oxytocin is released as part of the stress responses in a woman, it buffers the fight or flight response and encourages her to tend children and gather with other women. The “tend and befriend” notion developed by Drs. Klein and Taylor may explain why women consistently outlive men. Study after study has found that social ties reduce our risk of disease by lowering blood pressure, heart rate, and cholesterol. There’s no doubt that friends are helping us live longer.