To me, one of the best feelings in the world is a great belly laugh. Have you ever laughed so much your sides and face ache and you feel whacked afterwards while at the same time feel lighter mentally and emotionally uplifted??
Doctors have researched the benefits of laughter and found amazing results.
Benefits of Laughter :
1. Reduces Heart Disease
Laughing lowers blood pressure. People who lower their blood pressure , will reduce their risk of strokes and heart attacks. It is also great cardio workout, especially for those who are incapable of doing other physical activity due to injury or illness. It gets your heart pumping and burns a similar amount of calories per hour as walking at a slow to moderate pace.
2. Natural pain killer
Laughter may ease pain by causing the body to produce and release endorphins the body’s natural pain killers. It may also break the pain-spasm cycle common to some muscle disorders.
3. Improves breathing
You tend to take deep breaths in and out during heavy laughter which helps unclog airways and enhances inhalation and oxygen intake [source: Pattillo and Itano].
4. Helps you lose weight
According to researchers, laughing 100 times is equivalent to 10 minutes on a rowing machine or 15 minutes on the stationary bicycle [source: Godfrey]. When you are laughing, the muscles in your stomach expand and contract, similar to when you intentionally exercise your abs.
5. Gives good sleep
Laughter can soothe tension, it can stimulate circulation and aid muscle relaxation, both of which help reduce some of the physical symptoms of stress such as insomnia.
6. Decrease stress
A rollicking laugh fires up and then cools down your stress response. You benefit from reducing the level of stress hormones your body produces because hormone-level reduction simultaneously cuts the anxiety and stress impacting your body. It can also improve your immune system. Negative thoughts manifest into chemical reactions that can affect your body by bringing more stress into your system and decreasing your immunity. In contrast, positive thoughts actually release neuropeptides that help fight stress and potentially more-serious illnesses
7. Makes you look Young
Come on now when does a frown make you look younger! A good laugh exercises your face muscles, that’s why your face aches afterwards.
8. Boosts relationships
Laughter produces a general sense of well-being and increases personal satisfaction. It can make it easier to cope with difficult situations and also helps you connect with other people.