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10 Health benefits That Laughter Can Provide!: Who does not like to sit in a circle of friends and laugh remembering the old stories? Or, who does not like jokes or watching funny movies? Everyone likes to laugh and have fun, but what many do not know is that laughter can also bring health benefits!
Laughter and good humor contribute to a better functioning of our organism and also of our mind.
10 Health benefits That Laughter Can Provide!
1) Protect the Heart
Laughing helps preserve the heart, as determined by research from the University of Loma Linda in California and also by studies carried at the University of Maryland in the United States of America.
The first research was done with two groups of people who had already had a heart attack. One group was subjected to funny videos for 20 minutes a day while the other did not.
The results after one year of practice have shown that people who watched the videos showed a drop of over 65% in the amount of protein C – reactive protein in the body. This protein is a kind of marker of inflammation and the risk of cardiovascular problems. Another group had a drop of about 25%.
In the second research, it was confirmed that during the laughter the blood pressure decreases, developing the muscular functions of the heart, reducing the chances of infarction and cardiovascular diseases.
Moreover, when we commence laughing the heart rate increases, so we can circulate the blood more intensely, bringing oxygen to all the organs of the body.
2) Reduces stress
The same study by Loma Linda University even showed that laughing reduces stress. Laughing decreases the levels of cortisol and adrenaline (hormones that cause stress), in addition to releasing endorphin, which is the pleasure hormone and relaxation.
A laugh is able to keep a person relaxed for up to 45 minutes. And experts say brainwaves stimulated by laughter are similar to those triggered during a meditation session, that is, the body rests and the mind rests, as if the problems do not exist at that moment.
They even point out, for those who have had a full week at work, or been through stressful circumstances, watching comedy movies, or funny videos, because so it is reasonable to ease the mind and be calmer to resolve conflicts.
3) Strengthens the immune system
With the release of endorphin, the pleasure hormone, our body is able to produce more defense cells, improving our immune system and making our body more resistant to diseases. Cells that combat infections are also stimulated with the decline of cortisol and adrenaline, which avoids some health problems.
The cells produced when stress levels diminish are the B lymphocytes, which produce the antibodies, the T lymphocytes that track bacteria and viruses, the immunoglobulin A, which is the cell that combats respiratory infections, and the NK cells that destroy cancer cells.
4) Increase self-esteem
By increasing endorphin indices in the body, consequently, people are happier and happier with life. According to a study announced in the journal Geriatrics and Gerontology International laughter significantly decreases the likelihood of a person undergoing depression.
More than 100 patients who underwent this disease were analyzed and those who laughed more had a notable improvement in the picture of depression. Experts say that laughter makes people more optimistic, which can improve the chances of reversing a serious picture of mental illness and even transform the way these people are facing the difficulties.
5) Decreases pain and improves mood
Still talking about the benefits of endorphin release, a study was done in England, Oxford University, discovered that laughing can lessen the pain. This hormone, besides enhancing the mood and giving the sensation of well-being and pleasure to the organism, can also temporarily relieve some type of pain that the person is feeling.
6) Lower blood pressure
In the United States, a study of medical students at the University of Baltimore determined that laughing may also lower blood pressure. The study was done with 20 volunteers. They were constrained to stretches of stressful films and two days later they attended a comedy.
Blood samples were extracted from the participants before and after the tests, proving that stress reduced blood flow by more than 30%, while laughter caused it to increase by more than 20%. This caused the blood pressure to decline, reducing the chances of causing problems related to high blood pressure.
7) Control Cholesterol and Diabetes
Giving laughter can also increase levels of HDL, the good cholesterol in the body. The Loma Linda University study also trailed 20 diabetic people with high levels of bad blood cholesterol who were taking medication to regulate their problems.
10 patients sustained treatment with only the medications and the others, in addition to the remedies, watched comedy movies for 30 minutes a day. After a year of research, the conclusion was that the group that gave more laughter had a 23% increase in HDL levels in the blood than the other group, proving that laughing improves yes cholesterol problems and diabetes.
8) Improves digestion
When we are laughing, involuntarily we engage and relax the muscles of the abdomen, who never got a sore stomach for laughing, do not we? This ‘exercise’ supports the gastrointestinal system, which in turn makes digestion smoother, including heavier foods.
9) Fight wrinkles
A simple smile makes our face move from 12 to 15 muscles. And during a good laugh, it is not only the muscles of the abdomen that are incited, we move about 24 facial muscles as well. Even if we talk while we’re laughing, the number goes up to 84 muscles! This profits our physical appearance by limiting the appearance of wrinkles on our face.
According to experts, when we smile we excite the circulation of blood in the region of the face and this causes a genuine hydration and a greater production of the substances that maintain the skin firm and with more elasticity.
Still talking about aesthetic preferences, Vanderbilt University, Texas, concluded in their study that people who gave extra laughter lose about 20% more than those who did not laugh.
Still, according to this study, about 10 to 15 minutes of laughter per day can make a person lose about 1120 calories per year. This is because of the heart rate through the laughter increases. Unfortunately, it is not possible to state that just smiling another person will see the difference when rising the scale, but it sure is an aid for those who want to lose weight.
Loma Linda University research has demonstrated that laughter can be as healthy as physical exercise, especially for the elderly or those who have more trouble exercising. A laugh can move several muscles, including legs and feet, and can be seen as an alternative to enhance circulation and even lose weight.