Kindness is a language the deaf can hear and the blind can see. And Stephen G. Post, Ph.D. director of the Center for Medical Humanities, Compassionate Care and Bioethics at Stony Brook University in New York, has found that helping others in meaningful ways (i.e., creating crumbs of comfort) generally results in a happier, healthier and even longer life for the giver. For example: A study in Science Daily finds helpful behaviors like opening doors or giving directions may buffer the negative impacts of stress.

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A study published in Psychology and Aging finds people who volunteer 200 or more hours each year are less likely to develop hypertension. Finally, biological chemist David R. Hamilton, author of The Five Side Effects of Kindness, explains that the emotional warmth associated with kindness may lead to the release of oxytocin, the so-called "love hormone" which is good for the heart. So let's create some crumbs of comfort today.