This Viral Photo of a Grandma Taking Shots Could Actually Hold the Secret to a Long Life

March 16th 2017

Almie Rose

Here's one grandma who left her knitting at home.

A young woman from Phoenix, Arizona, who tweets under the username @paytongrett shared the above photo of her grandma Doreen partying — and it's gone viral, with one of the women Doreen was taking shots with even popping into the thread:

Strangers were also impressed with Doreen's youthful spirit:

It's reminiscent of a similar viral tweet from January that shows a group of young women welcoming an older woman into their bathroom selfie party:

Aside from becoming legends on Twitter, there's a huge benefit to what these older women are doing.

The act of making friends and maintaining friendships has been linked to a longer, healthier life, The New York Times noted in an April 2009 report. "In the quest for better health, many people turn to doctors, self-help books or herbal supplements," Tara Parker-Pope wrote for the Times. "But they overlook a powerful weapon that could help them fight illness and depression, speed recovery, slow aging and prolong life: their friends."

Parker-Pope points to studies that have shown the connection between friendship and longer lives: "A 10-year-old Australian study found that older people with a large circle of friends were 22 percent less likely to die during the study period than those with fewer friends."

That study concluded: "survival time may be enhanced by strong social networks."

Rebecca G. Adams, a professor of sociology at the University of North Carolina, Greensboro, told the Times there are great benefits to friendship we should be studying. "In general," she said, "the role of friendship in our lives isn’t terribly well appreciated. There is just scads of stuff on families and marriage, but very little on friendship. It baffles me. Friendship has a bigger impact on our psychological well-being than family relationships."

In December 2010, a piece in Harvard Women's Health, "The health benefits of strong relationships," noted that:

"Good connections can improve health and increase longevity ... One study, which examined data from more than 309,000 people, found that lack of strong relationships increased the risk of premature death from all causes by 50% — an effect on mortality risk roughly comparable to smoking up to 15 cigarettes a day, and greater than obesity and physical inactivity."

That study was conducted by researchers at Brigham Young University and published in 2015. ATTN: reported on the study in June 2016 noting, "Loneliness is particularly pronounced among certain groups of people, such as immigrants, the elderly, the disabled, and those in low-income families."

Next time you're meeting your friends for happy hour, then, see if grandma wants to come.