Mahjong, an ancient game quite popular in China and often associated with gambling can actually be a stress buster and help combat depression.
A study conducted by Huazhong University of Science and Technology, China, finds that urban residents who played mahjong are less likely to develop depression.
The study involved 11,000 residents (rural & urban) above 45 years old. The researchers in their observation said: “What is more surprising is that mahjong playing does not associate with better mental health among rural elderly respondents. One hypothesis is that Mahjong playing tends to be more competitive and at times become a means of gambling in rural China.”
Earlier, this year in April, in its bid to completely ban all form of online gambling, the Chinese government, banned all Mahjong video games along with the sale of poker video games in the country.
Following the ban, no new licenses have been issued to Mahjong and poker video games developers in China. It is reported that 30 percent of the developer licenses issued by Chinese authorities in 2017 was for Mahjong and Poker video games.
Gambling is illegal in mainland China and players from mainland visit casinos in Hong Kong or Macau where it is legal.