Harvard Health Letter

In Brief: ...and I'd like to thank the Academy for a longer life

In Brief

...and I'd like to thank the Academy for a longer life

We know from their long, often tearful, speeches that Academy Award winners have so much to be thankful for. Maybe some Oscar winners at the annual ceremony should include longer life expectancy on their list.

Dr. Donald Redelmeier, a researcher at Sunnybrook and Women's College Health Sciences Centre in Toronto, has carved out a niche for himself as epidemiologist to the stars. Over the last several years he has published studies of actors, actresses, directors, and screenwriters and how winning an Oscar changes their life spans.

His 2001 study of actors and actresses found that winners lived, on average, almost four years longer than nominees who smiled gamely for the cameras but went home empty-handed.

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