Scientific study concludes that watching football is actually good for your health

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At one point or another in our lives, we've all probably been told we watch too much football.

After all, it's easy to lose a whole Sunday to Sky Sports, especially when they have a doubleheader like Newcastle vs Arsenal and Manchester United vs Chelsea on the same day. 

Then there's the argument that suggests football is bad for your health.

Sweaty palms, nerves and nausea are usually felt by many in the stands, especially if it's a nail-biting fixture.

But these negative 'symptoms' of football have never actually been proven and ahead of the 2019/20 season, BetVictor have moved to bust some myths of the game. 

In fact, their scientific study - undertaken in partnership with the University of Leeds Biomedical department - has actually confirmed that football is good for your health. 

They analysed 25 Leeds United fans, aged between 20 and 62 years old, throughout three key games of the last Championship campaign.

These fans were both 'physiologically and psychologically monitored' during the fixtures to track three key factors - heart rate, blood pressure and mood. 

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Participants wore heart rate monitors throughout the game, while blood pressure was checked at different intervals.

Supporters were also given a mood survey and were interviewed after each match to form part of the psychological analysis. 

So what did the study find? 

The results found that an increased heart rate throughout the game led to 'positive stress' - similar to that felt during a moderate cardiovascular workout - proving that watching football can have a positive health benefit. 

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When Leeds won, each fans blood pressure was lowered, another health benefit. 

In terms of psychological impacts, each participant was in a positive mood for at least 24 hours after a win - although unsurprisingly, a loss resulted in an extended period of low mood. 

Pretty interesting stuff. We now have the science to back up the health benefits to football.

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So next time someone tells you to stop watching the big game, point them in the direction of this study - which you can read in full here

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