Ever seen those people gathering at your neighborhood park every Sunday and laughing? Well, the next time you roll your eyes at these laughter clubs, you might want to join them instead. While sharing a laugh at work can act as an instant pick-me-up, laughing can also have some excellent long-term health benefits. Apart from making you an all-round better person to be with, . to find out the other positive effects laughter can have on your health.
1. It Reduces Stress
Weight gain, high blood pressure, irritability. There’s no end to the terrible effects stress can have on your well-being. Laughter serves as the ultimate coping mechanism to deal with day-to-day frustrations and can reduce the cumulative stress that builds up within you. So, the next time someone steals your parking space, laugh it off and hope that karma teaches them a lesson.
2. Tones Your Abs
If you’ve been fortunate enough to laugh until your sides ache, you’ll know that laughing puts a lot of pressure on your abdominal muscles and diaphragm. Although this shouldn’t give you an excuse to become a couch potato and surf through sitcoms all day, laughing as often as you can, could be the most fun addition to your workout routine.
3. It Can Improve Your Relationships
A couple that laughs together stays together? It would seem that way. Relationship experts claim that just as important as sharing the same interests, sharing a sense of humor strengthens the connection between two people. Wouldn’t you want to spend your life with someone who understood all your jokes and references?
4. Make Your Heart Stronger
When you laugh, your blood pressure reduces and the muscles in your heart get a workout. Because of this, it gradually gets stronger and your overall cardiovascular health improves. Some even believe that a good dose of laughter is just as important as being regular at the gym. Plus, it’s a lot more fun.
5. Improves Your Breathing
If you suffer from chronic respiratory diseases like asthma, the deep breathing required to laugh might help you reduce your symptoms. Laughter forces you to exhale, empty out your lungs completely and then inhale a huge gulp of air. It won’t replace your inhaler, but it might reduce the number of times you have to fumble for it.
6. Makes You More Social
Everyone loves a good laugh. If you can make a group of people laugh, chances are they’re going to want to hang out with you again. If you appear as someone who laughs easily, you automatically seem more approachable to new people. So the next time a co-worker makes a terrible joke, just laugh along and grimace when no one’s looking!
7. It Increases Your Pain Threshold
Laughing can cause a surge of feel good hormone ‘endorphin’ into your body, which effectively alleviates pain. In fact, laughter is just as powerful as morphine (and totally addictive in a good way). Laughing can increase your pain threshold by almost as high as 10%. The next time you have to get a shot, just think of something funny and you won’t even know when it’s done
8. Kicks Your Immune System Into High Gear
Laughing more can actually increase the number of antibodies and T cells in your blood which are your body’s first line of defense against diseases. Perhaps there is some truth after all to the saying ‘Laughter is the best medicine’.
9. Gives You A More Positive Outlook
Having the ability to laugh at yourself and your problems can be the best life skill you ever develop. A sense of humor will help you tide over bad times, take problems in your stride and believe that nothing is so big that it cannot be solved.
10. Helps You Sleep
Have you tried going to sleep when you have a dozen worries in your mind? If you spent the whole night tossing and turning, you’ll know that the biggest obstacle to a good night’s sleep is anxiety. Instead of popping a sleeping pill, try 15 minutes of laughing and see how you feel after. Just the act of laughing can stimulate your endorphins and make it much easier for you to doze off.