Humor And Laughter Reduce The Risk Of Developing Chronic Health Conditions!
A merry heart is one of the most important things in life, both spiritually and physically. In the Bible, we see that God expects us to have a cheerful countenance. Proverbs 14:30 says, “A peaceful heart gives life to the body, and a bitter heart rots the bones.” A merry heart heals your soul and makes you strong. By contrast, a broken spirit weakens you and saps your strength. Having a merry heart will help you laugh in faith no matter what life throws your way.
The hormones produced during stressful situations (cortisol, adrenaline, ...) can do a lot of damage to the mind and body over time. Humor and laughter reduce the levels of these hormones in the body. It has also been proven that laughter can help reduce the risk of blood clots, heart conditions, and other stress-related diseases.
So, in short, what happens to your body when you laugh?
Your stress hormones decrease. Stress levels drop within minutes of laughing.
Your heart, lungs, diaphragm get stimulated.
Your abdominal, intercostal (between ribs), and facial muscles get stimulated.
Your brain’s reward system increases its activity.
Your body releases Endorphins—the body’s natural pain blockers—, giving you a sense of well-being.
Positive effects of laughter last up to 45 minutes, benefiting the cardiovascular system and reducing blood pressure.
Laughter even speeds healing.
Always laugh when you can. It is cheap medicine. Lord Byron
Incorporating humor into your daily life has many other benefits:
Your immune system gets stronger.
You interact with others better,
You burn out less throughout the day,
Your mood and anxiety relief improves. You exert a better sense of control over negative emotions that may be bringing you down, such as depression, anxiety, and stress.
Laughter encourages a sense of play and childlike behavior, which can help to improve your emotional intelligence and your social skills. Children laugh up to 300-400 times a day during their formative years, and this reduces to 10-15 times a day as an adult.
You don’t stop laughing when you grow old, you grow old when you stop laughing. He/She who laughs, lasts!
Here are some ideas as to how you can you incorporate humor into your life.
You don’t need a reason to laugh – just start laughing. Try laughter yoga which combines gentle breathing, stretching, and simulated unconditional laughter. When the laughter is practiced in a group setting, the laughter becomes infectious and soon genuine.
Remember two funny things that happened to you each day.
Watch stand-up comedy, a tv show or movie that tickles your funny bone.
Read a funny book.
Spend quality play time full of laughter with your pets and/or children.
Incorporate funny things into your life; a goofy pictures of your friends, family or pets, a witty sayings or cartoons.
Have a game night—a little good spirited competition can get the good times rolling.
Laugh often, long and loud. Laugh until you gasp for breath. George Carlin