Harnessing the trait of generosity may be the key to increasing longevity. This simply means that sharing resources can significantly and positively affect the lifespan of individuals.

A paper published on Monday in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Science showed the linear relationship between the age that individuals could reach and the amount of wealth transferred.

Tobias Vogt, University of Groningen assistant professor of spatial sciences, said that it is a good idea to help others throughout the course of one's life. In the beginning, one's existence would always depend on others but as one ages, he now has the capacity to share with others. This is also why when an individual gives resources to his child or parents, he is increasing their lifespan, reports CNN.

In the study, Vogt and his fellow researchers noted that there are other factors that could contribute to the longevity of an individual. They took into account the gross domestic product of a country as well as income inequality.

Vogt noted that one of the things they noticed was that countries that have stronger social cohesion also showed greater longevity. They also saw financial transfers were easier. The researchers used a 2010 meta-analysis of more than 300,000 participants from 148 separate studies and found that there was a 50 percent greater survival in countries where social relationships were strong.

The leading countries that showed significant resource sharing were Japan and Western Europe. They also had lower mortality rates. These countries, on average, shared around 68 to 69 percent of their income. On the other hand, China and Turkey showed a lower sharing rate at 44 and 48 percent.

Another area, which ranked significantly high when it comes to sharing wealth was South America. They share more than 60 percent of their lifetime income. The ones reported to be at the lower portion of the spectrum are those in Southeast Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa.

Zachary Frantzen prays with his family before dinner in Longmont Photo: Reuters

The World Happiness Report as found in the Sustainable Development Solutions Network for the United Nations, also includes life expectancy and generosity as among the factors in determining "happiness." These variables are analysed in order for them to determine the countries that are considered as the "happiest." The result coincides with the study, considering that Finland, located in Europe, still earned the spot as the happiest country, for a third straight year.