Discover what laughter and health have in common. In this subsection you will learn how laughter and stress are related and the importance of laughter for our continued well-being. You've heard the cliché, “laughter is the best cure”.
A good “belly laugh” forces you to breathe in more deeply which in turn causes your body to take in more oxygen which is essential for your health as you read in the previous page entitled “Breath for Life”.
Laughing improves your body’s immune system, your self healing energy. The immune system protects the body from foreign substances and pathogenic organisms.
When you laugh, the brain releases beta-endorphins. A Beta-endorphin is an organic substance which is released in the brain which has pain relieving properties. In other words, your body has the capability of producing its own pain killer.
Laugh and you will improve your concentration and blood flow. A good blood flow ensures that nutrients, water, salts, hormones, oxygen, and waste products are transported to and from all cells in your body.
Laughter will help to energise the bowels and it will massage the tissues in your abdomen.
As far as laughter and stress is concerned, a good side howler will lower your body’s stress endocrines and the beta-endorphins released by your brain will produce in you, a feeling of well being.
I know that it isn't easy to look at the bright side of life and to laugh when you are stressed out.
So what do you do?
For a start, stop watching, reading or listening to the news. News of any form are designed to put you in a state of fear and anxiety. To paraphrase Marshall McLuhan, “if it bleeds ... it leads”. I have a whole section on media induced fear in my section on “How to Overcome Fear”.
Start watching, reading and listening to comedies and feel good, positive stories which will help you start developing a positive mental attitude. Read through my section on “How the Mind Works”.
And take some advice from Eric Idle from the Monty Python team:
“If life seems jolly rotten
There's something you've forgotten
And that's to laugh and smile and dance and sing
When you're feeling in the dumps
Don't be silly chumps
Just purse your lips and whistle, that's the thing
And always look on the bright side of life
Always look on the right side of life ...”
Don't forget that the more you laugh, the healthier you will be. This page is part of my section on Health Related Fitness. In the next subsection you will read how rest and peace positively affect your health.