Look into the crystal ball: Can vivid images of the future enhance physical health? Academic Article uri icon


  • Many impulsive behaviors, unpleasant emotions, and misguided cognitions increase the incidence of type 2 diabetes and other conditions. This study tests the premise that such risk factors are inversely related to future clarity-the extent to which the future seems vivid and certain. Specifically, 211 participants completed the measures of future clarity and various determinants of health. Future clarity was positively associated with the inclination of participants to consume healthy food, abstain from cigarettes, participate in physical activity, and experience positive emotions. Future research should examine whether interventions designed to help individuals clarify and pursue their aspirations could stem lifestyle diseases.

publication date

  • 2018