My NHS Trust is holding ‘Health and Well-Being’ road shows over the next two weeks (one at each site) and we, as a library service, have booked a place to promote our Leisure Collection (of fiction, cooking, gardening and general interest books) and our new ‘Healthy Lives Collection’ of books around looking after your own health (i.e. stress management, long term conditions etc.).
This morning, as I started planning our display boards I went online to find evidence and quotes we could use to back up something we, as librarians, were already aware of (we promote evidence based practice, so not providing evidence to back up our claims would be a bit hypocritical!) I found a few interesting snippets:
“[a] fascinating study from the University of Sussex in 2009 found that a mere six minutes of reading can reduce stress levels by more than two-thirds. They found that this amount of reading was more beneficial than listening to music or going for a walk.”
(Quoted here from http://www.sunstoneonline.com/reading-a-dose-of-medicine-for-the-mind-and-body)
Just six minutes? I do much more than that a day, but maybe it explains why I’m generally very laid back! The article cited above makes a few points in favour of reading, including reading from a young age helps to prevent Alzheimer’s as well as helping lengthen attention spans and improving a child’s ability to think clearly. Unfortunately the article doesn’t provide citations for the articles, I think they would make for interesting reading!