In these times of economic gloom, a winning sweepstake ticket may be a dream for many - the bags of cash, the luxuries of a jet-setting life, the financial comfort and amazingly good health. But a new study is offering a rethink - because according to its results, real lottery winners have no guarantee of either better health or even long-term financial security.
In the first study, Andrew Clark and Benedicte Apouey of the Paris School of Economics showed that while lottery win boosts the winners' mental well-being, their physical health declines.
One possible explanation could be that the winners "party too much", and smoked and drank more after receiving the prize.
The British Household Panel Survey included 8000 people who had won the lottery between 1994 and 2005.
"Lottery wins might not be good for your physical health. You party too much," New Scientist magazine quoted Clarke as saying.
While many believe that lottery money could ensure financial security, another study from Florida showed that it might not happen always.
During the study, Scott Hankins of the University of Kentucky, Lexington compared big winners - prizes in the range 50,000 dollars to 150,000 dollars - with those who won less than 10,000 dollars.
He found that bankruptcy rates amongst the big winners were 50 per cent lower than average in the two years after the prize. After that, however, rates soared.
Averaged over the five years following the prize, roughly five per cent of winners in both groups went bankrupt.
The study appears in the Journal of the American Medical Association.