I'm thankful for a lot of things, so it was really hard to narrow it down to just one. This week was full of ups and downs. One thing that helps us is the ability to laugh. There's just something about laughter that helps sooth our souls. Whether you're watching a Mel Brooks Film (Spaceballs is still my favorite) or reading the Sunday comics, those giggles just work their magic. This got my curiosity piqued, so I decided to do a little research. Why exactly is laughter the best medicine? I mean really? Are there really health benefits to laughter?
And the answer is YES! There are tons of physical, as well as mental, benefits to laughter. Some of the physical include cardiovascular, blood sugar, pain relief and even immunity. It improves your mood and can help relieve stress and anxiety. The main reason is that laughter helps release endorphins, neurotransmitters that when released act as an analgesic which can help lower pain and increase someone's feeling of well being. Endorphins occure naturally in the body and are usually stimulated by physical exercise, excitement, being in love, and even eating spicy food. Did I mention they're non-addictive, yet some have been proven to be up to 500 times more powerful than any man-made opiate. Wow.
So the next time someone asks you why you're laughing, just tell them you're laughing at your health. Heck, laughter is free and Xanax requires a prescription.
PS: I am not a doctor, merely reporting information I've discovered in my quest to defend laughter.
Also, Demons Like It Hot is up for Book of the Week at Long and Short Reviews. Voting ends today, so feel free to cast your vote!