We’ve all heard the phrase “Laughter is the best medicine”, but is it really true? Turns out they are! Laughing can benefit our mind, body and surprisingly more. A smile and a good-hearted laugh can lead to an all-around betterment of well-being and requires little to no effort. Let’s see what a simple laugh can do for us.
Laughter physically relaxes your entire body.
A short, steady stream of laughter can leave your muscles feeling relaxed for up to 45 minutes after the fact! It also decreases stress hormones and improves our resistance to many diseases. The release of endorphins in a laugh, much like during sex, provides our bodies with natural, feel-good chemicals. Laughing also increases blood flow and helps protect the heart to reduce the risk of cardiovascular problems. Laughter has also been found to reduce one’s risk for obesity, Type 2 Diabetes, and digestive problems. A study, published in General Psychiatry, consisting of participants over the age of 65, concluded that optimists were 71% less likely to die from most causes of death, in contrast to pessimists. That is just one of many examples which prove that laughter can even lengthen your natural life span.
The mental benefits of laughter seem almost infinite.
Researchers at The British Dental Health Foundation revealed that after participants were shown pictures of smiling people, their brain and heart activity was equivalent to being given the stimulation of 2,000 Chocolate bars (minus the calories)! Did you know it’s impossible to feel anxious, angry, or sad when genuinely laughing? This reduction of stress recharges our bodies and helps us feel rejuvenated without the addiction of the morning cup of coffee or energy drinks. When we see situations in a more humorous light, it mentally adjusts our mood to prevent us from feeling overwhelmed on a day-to-day basis.
Laughter isn’t great for just ourselves; it also benefits everyone around us!
Laughter has been factually proven to be contagious, much like other actions resulting from emotions, such as yawning or crying. When we promote positive connections with those around us, a notable mental bond is created. Sharing a laugh with someone keeps a relationship fresh and exciting, while forming long-lasting unity. Laughing has been shown to increase a person’s spontaneity and helps us release inhibitions that may have held us back before. We may feel less defensive and can express our true feelings.
Just as there are a million and one benefits to laughter, there are an unlimited number of ways to laugh. Start with a simple smile and spread it to other people through the power of suggestibility. Count your blessings and be fortunate for what you have been given in life and for what you have worked hard for to get where you’re at today. Surround yourself with fun people and you will conform to their undeniable sense of humor. Laughing at yourself enables us to take things a bit less seriously and allows us to lighten up. On an even simpler level, watch a funny TV show and learn to laugh at other people!
The physical pros of a good laugh do nothing but benefit our bodies and help ensure our health but reducing the risk of numerous diseases, help us deal with stress, and allow us to avoid dependence on unnatural means of happiness, such as drugs and alcohol. Our mental health is boosted as we form healthy connections with funny people around us in sharing a laugh or spreading a smile. It helps build our personality and lets us brighten other peoples’ days by letting out a little chuckle. Laughter also builds the strong foundation for relationships with loved ones, coworkers, friends, neighbors, and almost anyone you meet. Why not let out a laugh and begin to instantly enjoy the endless benefits to your physical, mental, and societal well-being!