Scientists: Online Poker Reduces Stress Levels

Published March 7, 2010 by OCR Editor

Scientists: Online Poker Reduces Stress Levels

According to study, cortisol levels drop by up to 17% during games.

The game of online poker is played by tens of millions around the globe because it is fun, fuels competitive streaks and stimulates minds, but now another positive attribute can be added to the list - it also helps manage and reduce stress levels.

That conclusion was made recently after a study by a group of Canadian scientists who found that cortisol, which is better known as the "stress hormone," is altered in online poker players. The study found that cortisol levels drop as much as 17 percent when players are enjoying online poker.

According to the researchers, players become so wrapped up in the thrill of their poker game that they forget about external stresses and direct their mind toward other thought processes. This calming effect in turn reduces their overall stress.

The researchers also said that other casino games have similar effects on stress, however they placed a particular emphasis on the effect that online poker alone can have on its players.

The report follows previous studies by scientists that have shown the brain benefits from online gambling. According those studies, brain activity involved in gambling can cause improvements in cognitive function, as well as a reduction in the process of aging.

The study will no doubt aid those fighting for legal recognition for online poker in jurisdictions in which it is currently banned, including in the United States, where there is currently a legal battle waging over the 2006 Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA).

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