The fountain of youth


Or not so much youth as longevity. Winning the Nobel prize apparently adds years to your life, maybe:

“Status seems to work a kind of health-giving magic. Once we do the statistical corrections, walking across that platform in Stockholm apparently adds about 2 years to a scientist’s life-span. How status does this, we just don’t know.”

There’s not enough info listed in the article to really dig your teeth into, but the first and likely most obvious question I have is, hello Mr. Correlation v. Mr. Causation? Say what you want about “deserving work,” but what if Nobel prize winners are simply more driven than their nominated, non-winning peers? Ignoring the notion of a status effect, it would make sense that people who are more driven would have more cause to live, and be more likely to keep going when others would give up an wither away.

Just wondering.

(EurekAlert: “New research says winning a Nobel Prize adds nearly two years to your lifespan.” [Jan 16, 2007])