Laughter - the best medicine
Laughter is not just a facial expression or a sound. When we laugh endorphins, the body’s natural feel-good chemicals, are released into our system. And so laughter affects our whole body, mind and mood. Written by Ollie Coach, Belinda Wells
Did you hear the one about……… Laughter?
Laughter is not just a facial expression or a sound. It’s something that affects our whole body, mind and mood. We laugh when we find something funny, or when we are happy. Laughter releases endorphins into our system. Endorphins are the body’s natural feel-good chemicals.
They promote an overall sense of well-being and have the power to make us feel happy.
So, we can use laughter to boost our mood too.
Laughter makes us healthier because it floods our bodies with chemicals which boost the immune system, increasing the body’s natural defence against viruses and many other diseases. It can even help to fight cancer cells. So, laughing could also help you to live longer.
It has been proven that if we laugh, even a false laugh to start with, it will eventually tun into the real thing, we just can’t help it. It is infectious. Have you ever found something so funny that you just couldn’t stop laughing - even when you wanted to? Laughing can spread as quickly as a yawn! But it is so much better for you. So much more fun!
Did you know that laughing actually uses 15 facial muscles alone? And many other muscles throughout our bodies are also used as the laughter spreads from our face, through our breathing and into the rest of our body.
Some people even say that a lot of laughter, can be almost as healthy as exercise, lowering blood pressure, helping with breathing and intake of oxygen. It can even help to lessen the effects stress and even of pain.
Laughter burns calories! I read somewhere that research has found that laughing for 10 to 15 minutes a day can burn approximately 40 calories. Now just imagine we did that a few of times a day.
Now I’m not overly keen on exercise myself, well I do a good hour’s dog walk every day, but I would hate the thought of doing a workout or going to the gym. Maybe that is why the thought that laughter counts towards exercise sounds great to me!
When we were children we used to laugh about all sorts of things, sometimes up to a hundred or more times a day. But as adults, we tend to laugh much less, taking life more seriously.
That is such a shame really isn’t it?
Now perhaps we can’t burst into fits of laughter in the middle of a crisis, or in a serious meeting…….
Well maybe we can?
Laughter increases memory and brain function. It helps you release frustration or anger
A good laugh, enhances relationships, supports both physical and emotional health and just makes you feel good! You can’t feel anxious, angry, or sad when you’re laughing!
And I’ve noticed time and time again that sometimes if I see the funny side of a stressful situation or a problem, and have a really good laugh about it, it keeps me really grounded and relaxed allowing me to see things in perspective and to deal with them more rationally. The saying ‘Laughter is the best medicine’ is true. But with the added benefit that you don’t need a trip to your local GP surgery or a prescription to benefit from it!
A really good, hearty laugh does relieve tension and stress, leaving your muscles relaxed for up to 45 minutes afterwards.
Laughter helps you stay mentally healthy.
Laughter makes you feel good.
Even if you just hear laughter it can prime your brain, you smile and get ready to join in with the fun.
Laughter can do so many positive things.
How many times will you laugh today?
There, see what I mean?
You feel better already, don’t you!
Belinda Wells, Ollie Coach
Belinda is an Ollie Coach and Foster Carer. Previously a Primary School Teacher, she now has over 20 years’ experience working with children. Her interests are psychology, how we think and why we behave as we do, and she loves learning and writing. Belinda enjoys seeing the difference her work as an Ollie Coach can make to the children and families she works with.
To get in contact with Belinda email Belinda.firstname.lastname@example.org
To find out more about Ollie and his Super Powers and how to become an Ollie Coach go to www.ollieandhissuperpowers.com