Laughter is a unique ability that only humans and a couple other fellow primates have.
It can seem like such a small, simple thing to do – yet it has been proven to be very beneficial for our overall health.
So, yes, my friends, I am here to tell you the evidence has shown that watching all of those episodes of your favourite comedy, or spending all night on Tik Tok laughing your face off, could, in fact, be healthy
Here’s some reasons why:
*Disclaimer: All of the opinions and content presented in this post are not professional advice and are true to the best of the author’s knowledge. This post is meant for inspirational and entertainment purposes only.*
Endorphins are the chemicals released by your brain that help to lower stress, and they basically act as your body’s own personal supply of painkillers. They’re what help make us feel happy, and when we laugh and smile and a bunch of these endorphins are released, our stress is reduced, which ultimately helps…..
support the immune system!
The mind/body connection is real.
If we have a constant, negative mindset, our brains release more stress hormones which make it hard for your body to fight off disease.
Meanwhile, a positive mindset has been shown to do the opposite! When we laugh, dopamine, serotonin, oxytocin, and endorphins, which all support a happy mind and body, are released. All of these hormones help relieve some of that stress and pain that can weaken our immune response. It also boosts the number of T-cells and B-cells in our bodies which are made to fend off viruses and tumors.
Think about that the next time you have a chance to make someone smile.
It helps relax your Body
When you laugh and smile, it physically relaxes your body by releasing the tension in your muscles.
It can actually relax your muscles for up to 45 minutes after a good laugh!
It’s also been shown through a 2008 study that even anticipating laughing or smiling can result in relaxation and the lowering of stress hormones.
So the simple act of settling in to watch your favorite comedy can help you rest and restore.
It can improve your memory
Laughing and smiling could also help improve your memory! Studies have shown that engaging in humor and laughing actually pushes your brain wave activity towards a “gamma frequency” which is raised when we do things involving memory and recall.
So I guess if you always forget where you put your keys, just laugh about it instead of getting frustrated. You might find you actually start remembering!
It can keep you in Shape
Laughing uses muscles all throughout your body. Some studies have shown that 10-15 minutes of good laughter can actually help you burn an extra 10-40 calories. Nothing crazy – but hey! You’re getting a mental and physical workout when you put on your favorite comedy or scroll through Tik Tok. That’s a win-win if you ask me.
It can lower blood pressure
There were studies done on the effects of humor on patients undergoing treatment for advanced kidney failure. It was shown that enjoying some good laughs through watching 30 minutes of comedies twice a week for about 2 months actually helped to reduce their blood pressure. Humor therapy – it’s a thing!
It can improve connection
Laughing can improve our connections with ourselves and with others. When we laugh and enjoy humour, it brings about feelings of optimism, lightness and takes a bit of the heaviness and seriousness away from life. We might find it helps us gain a different perspective on what’s happening in our lives, since it allows us to step out of stressful or negative mindsets. And when we laugh with others, it can also help give us a feeling of bonding. It can give a feeling of belonging and connection through sharing enjoyment with other people around us.
It helps us cope
“We use laughter to fill the space when we don’t know what to say or when we don’t know what to feel.” (CBC)
If you ever laugh when things aren’t going your way, that’s just a natural stress reaction. Laughing at difficult situations helps give us a sense of control.
Finding ways to laugh during difficult times and having a dark sense of humour can help push the world away for a minute and give us some optimism when things aren’t looking so bright. It might help us find a new way of looking at the situation and cope with things that feel too real and scary. It helps make us feel a little less alone.
While laughing can help with our overall health, it’s obviously not a cure to any illness.
But, it’s a powerful supplement we all have access to at any time – while of course being respectful to those around us – that can do great things for our general well-being.
So find the humour in life in addition to your favourite shows. Laugh at the mess-ups, laugh with friends, come out and join a fun class here at Marquee or even just force yourself into a good giggle!
And never underestimate the act of putting a smile on someone’s face.
It can really go a long way.
Annddd if you’re looking for a smile or two today, here’s some painfully bad jokes you can read that I hope will make you smile (even if it’s just a little):
What do you call a guy who never farts in public?
A private tutor.
What’s the best thing about Switzerland?
I don’t know, but the flag is a big plus.
I was wondering why the ball was getting bigger…
then it hit me.
What does a nosy pepper do?
Get’s jalapeno business!
Why can’t you trust atoms?
Because they make up everything
Oswald my bubble gum.
What did the pirate say on their 80th birthday?
How do you make an octopus laugh?
What do you call a boomerang that won’t come back?
What’s the most terrifying word in nuclear physics?
10 Scientifically Proven Ways Laughter Can Relieve Stress. (2020, August 12). Retrieved from https://www.usa.edu/blog/how-laughter-can-relieve-stress/
Don Brown, A. (2011, September 02). The Benefits of Laughter. Retrieved from https://www.ccpa-accp.ca/the-benefits-of-laughter/
Figalora, S. (2014, April 20). Laughing Makes Your Brain Work Better, New Study Finds. Retrieved from https://abcnews.go.com/Health/laughing-makes-brain-work-study-finds/story?id=23393053
Mutabdzija Jaksic, V. (2020, April 03). Why watching comedies is ‘important medicine’ | CBC Comedy. Retrieved from https://www.cbc.ca/comedy/why-watching-comedies-is-important-medicine-1.5519839
Stress relief from laughter? It’s no joke. (2019, April 05). Retrieved from https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/stress-management/in-depth/stress-relief/art-20044456
What happens when we laugh? (2019, September 05). Retrieved from https://www.bbc.co.uk/bitesize/articles/zjxkscw
McDermott, B., Porter, E., Hughes, D., McGinley, B., Lang, M., O’Halloran, M., & Jones, M. (2018, August 21). Gamma Band Neural Stimulation in Humans and the Promise of a New Modality to Prevent and Treat Alzheimer’s Disease. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6130417/