Laughing – The best Medicine
Various studies have shown it over and over again, Laughing is part of a healthy lifestyle. Taking life a little less serious and laughing about ourselves has enormous long time benefits for our overall well being.
In this article we look in particular into ..
- What actually happens when we laugh?
- Benefits of Laughter – physical and mental
- Ways to make you laugh
- Laughter – Facts and Figures
Laughter is the closest distance between two people.
What actually happens when we laugh?
The beautiful thing with Laughing is that it engages our entire bodies. But, what is actually happening inside our body when we laugh? Here are some actions that you might not be aware of:
About 15 facial muscles contract and core muscles become tense. Other muscles in the body weaken and get more uncontrolled. That explains why some people walk very funny when they have a blast. The abdominal muscles become tense and give you a little extra workout.
A good, contagious laugh can actually release endorphins. This hormon is a well appreciated benefit of excercise. Endorphins help fight depression and can help reduce physical pain, at least temporarily.
Laughing reduces the production of Cortisol, the stress hormon.
As you laugh and struggle for air, your chest muscles tighten. The air is forced through your lungs and vocal cords. This results in the contagious hahaha sound. The lungs are filled with fresh air and forced to expand.
Some people start crying when having a good laugh. At least this is what it looks like. The tear ducts can become activated and tears might run across your face.
The active lung circulation increases heart rate and blood pressure. Overall this increases the distribution of oxygen into all of your organs, including your heart.
Laughing enhances the stimualtion of both parts of the brain. This increases the ability to remember and learn new things. It keeps the brain alert and allows to store more information.
Overall laughing does burn calories. Research studies from Vanderbilt University Medical Center reveal that participants that were laughing for 10 to 15 minutes, burned between 10 and 40 calories.
Another Research was published by the International Journal of Obesity. The results of the study showed that heart rate and calorie burn increase up to 20 per cent.
Benefits of Laughter
There are many benefits to the impact on Laughter in our lifes. Below we have summed up the most common and researched ones. Laughter has affected the scientific world since 1970, and research is ongoing.
Physical Benefits of Laughter
- Laughter releases endorphins
Endorphins promote an overall sense of well-being and can even temporarily relieve pain. Other reasons for endorphins spreading through our bodies are by exercise, excitement, orgasm, and spicy food.
- Laughter reduces stress
Laughing can counteract the bodies affect on high levels of cortisol. This hormon is known to be pour out in times of stress.
- Laughter is a natural pain reliefer
The nervous system temporarily sets our pain neurons on break and thus reducing pain.
- Laughter improves cardiovascular health
Laughter improves the function of blood vessels and increases blood flow. This protects you against cardiovascular diseases, such as a heart attack.
- Laughter lowers Blood Pressure
Individuals who laugh regularly protect their heart and their blood vessels. Ultimately resulting in a lower blood pressure.
- Laughter boosts your immune system
Laughter increases immune cells and antibodies, resulting in an improved immune system.
- Laugther increases Bloodflow
A study conducted at the University of Maryland shows the effects of laughing on blood vessels. After a good laugh with a comedy movie, the participants had a higher expand and contracting blood vessels. Other participants that were given a drama movie to watch, showed tense in their blood vessels, and restricted blood flow.
- Laughter lowers Blood sugar levels
A Research of 19 individuals with Diabetes controlled the effects of laughing on their sugar levels. The participants were given a meal and a blood sugar test. The next day the participants received another meal whilst watching a entertaining lecture. The blood sugar test after the second day showed that their blood sugar was lower than the day before.
Laughter and mental health
- Laughter helps fight Anxiety
where there is laughter, there is no fear. Facing your fears with laughter decreases their power and impact on you.It is not possible to feel anxious or depressed when you are laughing.
- Laughter shifts perspective
By looking at the world in a more humorous way, you realize that there is no threat waiting behind each corner for you. It gives you a psychological distance and lets you look at the world with a lighter heart.
Ways to make you laugh
How to get yourself started for your laugh therapie. We have listed our best ways to get that big smile on your face. It works every single time, trust us!
- Watch a funny comedie or TV show
- Invite old/childhood friends and walk down memory lane
- Watch funny YouTube videos
Here are some examples to get you started
- Have a fun day with friends or family (game evening, bowling, ..)
- Go to a Karaoke night
- Do something stupid and laugh about yourself.
- Download Free Daily Jokes Apps
- Join a laughter yoga class
- Seek out those people with their contagious laugh
Our Tip: Trick yourself into happiness. Stand in front of a mirror and smile at yourself for about 15 seconds. Then stop and repeat. Repeat as often as necessary until you actually realize how absurd this is. The rest will just happen on its own!
Laughter – Facts and Figures
Laughing is an amazing part of our lifes. Here are some interesting facts about Laughs.
>> Children laugh about 30 times a day. An adult laughs on average around 17 times a day. Babies start laughing at 4 months. <<
>> Difference between the sexes: Woman laugh more than man, whilst man are actually the cause of their females laughter. <<
>> Most laughs happen when we spend time with friends and family. Not from reading jokes or watching funny movies. <<
>> Laughing makes you attractive. People are drawn to humour and laughter. Laughing symbolizes confidence and not taking every bit of life too serious. Charackteristics that are associated with popularity. <<
>> Laughing is contagious: Have you ever wondered why TV shows play a laugh track after every joke? <<
>> Gelotology: This is the science of Laughing and it’s effect on the body. No joke! Scientists are intrigued by the effects of Laugh on health, social behavior and more. <<
>> Another scientific term: Gelotophobia describes the fear of laughing. <<
>> There are actually studies that report, for every 15 minutes laugh, you can add up to 2 days of life span. <<
Laughter is the sensation of feeling good all over and showing it principally in one place.Josh Billings