No doubt you’ve heard the saying that “laughter is the best medicine.” I’d always heard it, too … but I didn’t really believe it. That is, until I read the book Anatomy of an Illness by Norman Cousins. Mr. Cousins details how daily doses of laugher (along with high doses of Vitamin C) cured of him an illness that was slowly but surely leading him to the grave.
Mr. Cousin’s book completely changed the way I view illness.
Researchers around the world agree with the idea that laughter can truly benefit the body.
A Huffington Post article highlights that laughter can …
- improve short term memory
- lower levels of cortisol, the “stress hormone”
- burn calories (!!)
- protect against heart disease
Gaiam Life reports that laughter can boost Tcells, which “are specialized immune system cells just waiting in your body for activation. When you laugh, you activate T cells that immediately begin to help you fight off sickness.”
A recent Psychology Today article highlights that laughter can not only reduce pain and better equip us to tolerate discomfort, but it reduces sugar levels, increasing glucose tolerance in diabetics and non diabetics alike. Additionally, it helps your blood vessels function better.
But what if there’s nothing funny in your life right at this moment? Can you still laugh and reap all the above-mentioned benefits?
I stumbled onto something new … laughter meditation. I tried it. And it felt good. (Although, my neighbors probably think I’m insane!)
Try it out. And then leave a comment. Did it make you feel good?