6 Benefits of Laughing: National Humor Month
NATIONAL HUMOR MONTH
April is National Humor Month, but Alzheimer’s Disease and its prevalence is No Joke! In last week’s post I shared some startling statistics about Alzheimer’s Disease and how health care providers are now focusing on prevention of the disease by improving brain health. There are several new “alternative health and wellness” areas today, one of which is Laughter Yoga, a practice involving prolonged voluntary laughter. Learn more about Laughter Yoga here
Laughter Is the Best Medicine
I don’t know about you, but I think one of the best feelings in the world is a good, long belly laugh. You know, the kind where you laugh so hard your start crying and your stomach hurts. LOL, someone reading this, having never experienced a really good laugh might think I am crazy for suggesting pain and crying equals one of the best feelings in the world. But, you know what I mean. In spite of belly pain and tears, there are many health benefits to laughing.
6 Health Benefits of Laughing
Those with lower blood pressure decrease their risk of having a stroke or heart attack.
Improves Cardiac Health
Laughing provides a great cardiac workout. This is especially helpful for people who are unable to do other forms of exercise due to health issues or illness.
Ok. It probably shouldn’t be your alternative for going to the gym, but one study found that laughing for 10-15 minutes a day can burn about 40 calories.
We need oxygen to breathe. To keep our lungs healthy we need to take deep breaths in order to flush out the old, stale air. When we laugh we exhale longer, ridding the lungs of stale air and increasing the amount of oxygen in our blood.
Laughing boosts T-cells. T-cells are specialized immune system cells that help fight disease. So when you laugh, you activate T-cells that immediately begin to help you fight off sickness.
Studies show that laughter and humor are complex cognitive functions that involve the entire brain. There is an increase in activity in the area of the brain associated with creativity when we are engaged in activities that make us laugh.
3 Activities to Laugh Your Way to Better Health
Try these three activities next time you need a good laugh:
Wiggles and Giggles—adapting movements to match various animals in a song https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CT86Dl442jA
Tell Jokes— https://www.rd.com/jokes/
Silly Singalong—Watch this month’s Music Mondays
Want more ideas? Get your FREE National Humor Month Calendar filled with funny holidays and links to activities.