Could Laughter Be the Best Medicine?
Today is World Laughter Day. Isn’t that ironic? Considering that most of us are forty or more days into severe restrictions on our ability to move freely throughout our world, it hardly seems like the time to laugh.
And yet, with our stress levels at an all-time high for a sustained period of time, maybe today is the best time to celebrate and laugh. And remember what laughter feels like.
The old saying, “Laughter is the best medicine” is actually true! Given our concerns about the pandemic and the fear and uncertainty we are experiencing, it’s comforting to know that laughter helps to boost our immune system. Yes, it’s true.
That’s not all. Laughter can also help to;
- Lower your stress hormones
- Decrease your pain
- Relax your muscles
- Prevent heart disease
In his groundbreaking book, “Anatomy of An Illness”, Dr. Norman Cousins chronicles his journey to wellness by using laughter and high doses of Vitamin C to cure himself of Ankylosing Spondylitis, a degenerative disease. His doctor had told him he would die within a few months.
Dr. Cousins checked himself out of the hospital and into a hotel, and then fed himself a continuous “diet “of funny movies, what he calls “Laughing Matter, ” and high doses of Vitamin C. He claimed that ten minutes of belly-ripping laughter would provide him two hours of pain-free sleep, which even his morphine doses were failing to provide. He eventually cured himself with a continuous stream of side-splitting merriment (and Vitamin C).
Here’s a link to his book, or watch this movie that was made about his incredible journey.
Finding it hard to find something to laugh about right now? Running out of movies and binge-watching possibilities? There is some good news. Research has shown that the body is unable to tell the difference between real and fake laughter, so you will reap the benefits that laughter can bring, even if you fake it.
Laughter Yoga requires no prior yoga experience. We found these terrific videos to introduce you to Laughter Yoga and we promise that you will laugh just watching them:
Did you know that there is even a Laughter Online University? They host online events where you can find your laughter again with thousands of other laughter-hungry humans:
World Laughter Day Event:
Laughter Wellness Emotional Detox:
We encourage you to find your laughter again, because strengthening your immunity is vitally important, especially now.
To learn more about the building blocks to a strong immune system, please check out our series on Building Immunity: Part I, Part II and Part III. Stay tuned for Part IV this week.
If you have any questions, please reach out to us. We’re here to help, because we care.
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