IS LAUGHTER THE BEST MEDICINE?
When was the last time you had a good laugh with your family or friends or co-workers? I am not talking about just a smile or grin or chuckle on some meme or someone’s joke. I am talking about a side-splitting laugh. The laughs that are so contagious that the people around you will also burst out laughing. If you don’t remember, then maybe it’s time for you to add this in your to-do list.
Did you know that April is National Humor Month? Oh yes, there is a National Humor moth. So, I thought it’s the best time to talk about the health benefits of laughter. You may be surprised to know that there are numerous benefits of laughter both mentally and physically.
Why is laughter the sweetest medicine for the mind and body?
A good laugh works faster to bring your mind and body into balance. It is a powerful antidote to mood swings, stress, and anxiety. It triggers the release of pleasure-inducing neurochemicals in the brain. Good humor lightens up your mood, inspires you, increase your focus, keeps you alert and grounded. This free medicine is the best for short-tempered people and helps you to forgive sooner.
So many benefits from this fun, free and easy to use the medicine, yet many forget to use it. Our ability to laugh frequently and easily has immense healing and renewing power.
Health Benefits of Laughter:
1. Laughing makes you feel good
A positive chain reaction happens inside your body every time you burst into laughter. Endorphins, the feel-good chemicals are released which triggers your brain. In fact, a longer laugh can make you feel euphoric, like a runner’s high, due to the endorphins. This also helps in relaxing your arteries and improving blood flow which is good for the heart.
2. Laughing with friends may diminish pain
Research shows that laughing in a group can actually diminish chronic pain. The Journal of Aging Research found that after 8 weeks of attending “humor therapy” the group of seniors felt less physical pain as compared to those who did not attend.
3. Laughing boosts your mental health
Laughing exercises or participating in laughing therapies decrease depression symptoms and improve mental health. Nothing disperses anger/conflicts than a good laugh. Try to look at the funny side of any issue or take it in a lighter note. Laughter helps you forget resentments, doubts, criticism, and bitterness.
4. Laughter burns calories
Now don’t stop going to the gym!!! But studies have found that laughing for 10-15 mins a day can burn 40kcal which is close to three to four pounds over the course of a year.
5. Laughter boosts the immune system
The decrease in stress hormones improves immunity. Laughter helps in reducing stress which increases the immune cells and antibodies to fight against infections. Thus the more you laugh, the more your resistance towards diseases.
6. Laughter may even help you to live longer
Studies have proved that people who have a good sense of humor outlived those who don’t laugh much. It reduces blood sugar levels and increases glucose tolerance in both diabetic and non-diabetic people.
How to bring humor and laughter into your life?
- Count your blessings
- Smile Often
- Spend time with fun, playful people
- Find humor in everyday events
- Laugh at your embarrassing moments
- Change perspective and find something positive in everything
- Imp: 15 mins of laughter every day
Now that you know the health benefits of laughter, go out and spread it with your loved ones or someone who may need it now. Make time for your friends, family, and for the activities you enjoy.