According to new study, friends and family are crucial in predicting our survival – in fact they can better our odds of living by 50 per cent.
Brigham Young University professors Julianne Holt-Lunstad and Timothy Smith report that low social interactions are as bad as - smoking 15 cigarettes a day, being an alcoholic, or twice as harmful as obesity.
The researchers conducted the study by analysing previous data that measured frequency of human interaction, Times of India reports.
Prof Holt-Lunstad said: "The idea that a lack of social relationships is a risk factor for death is still not widely recognised by health organisations and the public.
When someone is connected to a group and feels responsibility for other people, that sense of purpose and meaning translates to taking better care of themselves and taking fewer risks."
The study revealed friends and family influence health for the better in many ways, from providing a calming touch to finding meaning in life, according to The Press Association.