The New York Times bestselling author of Real Food / Fake Food delivers a highly entertaining game changer that uses cutting-edge research to show us why being a sports fan is good for us. There are thousands of books about sports. This book is about sports fans. Citing fascinating new studies on sports fandom, Larry Olmsted makes the case that the more you identify with a sports team, the better your social, psychological, and physical health is; the more meaningful your relationships are; and the more connected and happier you are. Fans maintain better cognitive processing as their gray matter ages; they have better language skills; and college students who follow sports have higher GPAs, better graduation rates, and higher incomes after graduating. And there's more: On a societal level, sports help us heal after tragedies like 9/11 and the Las Vegas mass shooting, providing community and hope when we need it most. Even now, the greatly altered games during the COVID-19 pandemic provide socially distanced joy. Illustrated with lively drawings throughout, Fans is the perfect gift for anyone who loves sports or anyone who loves someone who loves sports.