The history of hugging as a social practice is innate. The physical act of hugging a person shows protection, intimacy, care, and affection. Do you know that there is an arm of meditation known as "mindful hugging," by Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh? It says: You hug for the span of three breaths. The first one honors your presence in that moment; the second one honors the other person, and the third one is dedicated to the feelings of happiness and gratitude that arise from your togetherness. So, just in case you needed another reason, here are the health benefits of hugging someone.

1. Hugs are instant oxytocin boosters that can help heal feelings of loneliness, isolation, and anger.

2. Hugs stimulate the thymus gland that is known to regulate and balance the production of white blood cells in the body.

3. Hugs are a great way of releasing stress from the body and relaxing the muscles.

4. Hugs activate pressure receptors called Pacinian corpuscles that keep the blood pressure low and balanced.

5. Hugging someone releases endorphins in the body that are known to block pain pathways and bring relief.