What happens to a frog’s truck when it breaks down? It gets toad away.
Think of that as a tiny step towards better health and a happier you. Well, a minuscule step maybe.
But, the fact remains that the simple acts of smiling and laughing can boost your mood, help you deal with stress, fight nagging fears and even help with chronic pain.
According to the folks at Fix.com, here are some of the benefits of smiling and laughing:
“They release chemicals. When we smile, the movements of our muscles send signals to our brains. These signals release serotonin and endorphins, which are known as the “feel-good” chemicals of the brain. These chemicals make us happy when they are released, and they can reduce perceptions of pain.
“They relax the body. Laughter, particularly a good hard belly laugh, can relieve built-up body tension and stress. When we laugh, the muscles we use to do so will relax, and they can stay relaxed for 30–45 minutes after that.
“They reduce stress. When endorphins are released in the brain, stress hormones, such as cortisol, are reduced. When we feel stressed, anxious, or fearful, our bodies release more cortisol. This cortisol release creates negative, unpleasant, stressful feelings. We can lower our cortisol levels by laughing and relaxing.
“They support lung health. When we laugh, our lungs expand and become replenished with oxygen. We let a lot of air out and a lot of air in. This process is similar to deep breathing techniques used to relieve stress. Deep laughter sends more oxygen-rich nutrients and blood throughout the body.
“They support heart health. Laughing on a regular basis lowers blood pressure, increases blood flow, and improves the function of blood vessels, which can all decrease your risk of heart attack and other cardiovascular problems.
“They promote a healthy immune system. Laughter is a great way to reduce stress hormones and increase “feel-good” hormones. Due to these processes and changes in chemicals, our immune systems increase the numbers of white blood cells and other infection-fighting antibodies. This improves our everyday health and protects us from viruses.
“They serve as exercise. A good laugh is also good exercise. It burns calories, provides our body with movement, increases conditioning and toning, and keeps our cardio systems working.”
And, to make sure you get your daily dose of laughter, here are some resources; think of them as your medicine cabinet of mirth:
- Jokes from Readers Digest
- Clean jokes from the Laugh Factory
- Rolling Stone’s list of the 25 funniest movies of all time
- 10 funniest books ever
- Best podcasts if you need a good laugh
- Funniest TV shows
Source: Fix.com Blog