The meaning of laughter is to simply find amusement or delight in something — but it can mean so much more for your health. With a diagnosis of a chronic disease, recovery can seem overwhelming. Laughter is proven to help patients, friends and families to heal.
Benefits of Laughter
We often use laughter to communicate our joy, and it is through this joy that researchers have found patients creating a sense of well-being and prolonged survival. In fact, studies have found that laughter has numerous physiological benefits, including normalizing your blood pressure, boosting immune function and improving your circulation.
As a natural human function, laughter works to activate endorphins or pain relieving hormones. Making time for laughter also will help you reduce the levels of stress and its harmful effects.
Something to Laugh About
On average, about 10 percent of our white blood cells are natural killer cells — healthy cells that regularly protect our bodies from viral infected cells.
One research team, using the relationship between laughter and natural killer cell activity, found that the more frequently patients engaged in laughter, the stronger their natural killer cell activity became. This means that laughter immediately improves our body’s capacity to kill or eliminate cancer cells!
The most crucial tip for healthy laughter? According to Mariusz Wirga, M.D., medical director, psychosocial oncology, MemorialCare Todd Cancer Institute, Long Beach Memorial, "the will!" Choosing to set aside time each day for unconditioned laughter, where jokes or humor are not needed, is the most important part of this universal medicine.
So, Why Laugh?
- It’s free.
- It’s fun.
- There are no adverse side effects.
- It has been proven to help prevent heart disease, stroke, dementia, diabetes and obesity.
- It has anti-aging properties.
- If practiced in a group, promotes healthy social relations.
- Finding the humor in everyday life or events will aid in relaxation, and help you to overcome anxiety.
We always have (health) reasons to laugh even when there is not much in our life situation to laugh about. So, laugh unconditionally every day for your favorite dose of medicine.