Being Religious Can Keep You Heathy In Tough Times

For Tula Holm, grieving in the arms of Jesus has helped since her husband Curt passed away two years ago, "Since my husband died, I've said the scripture, 'I will never leave you or forsake you.'"

She says that has made all the difference, "That gives me the confidence that even though I'm alone as a person, I'm never alone."

Researchers with Yale University found in times of bereavement, older adults are more likely to have mental and physical problems, sending them to the doctor. But the study also found, elderly who were more religious, were less likely to need a doctor because their faith was the alternative coping strategy. Nancy Mayer, a grief counselor for Green Acres Baptist Church, has helped people with and without faith as a base for healing. The difference, she says, is remarkable, "The room with non believers, so often there was anxiety, confusion and frustration." All the elements that can lead to illness. Mayer says believers tend to look at death in a different way, "The believers have a sense of security of knowing where their loved one is."

The study also suggests a greater reliance of religious coping can lead to a savings in heath care. With 800 thousand new widowers each year, the religious inspired reduction in doctor visits would add up to a $180 million dollar savings.