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The Healthy Benefits of Laughter

Updated on August 2, 2014

The few studies conducted on the benefits of laughter have shown laughter acts as a medicine in lowering, preventing and/or curing certain diseases. This is why Laughter is termed by scientists as the best medicine.

People who laugh a lot and many times always appear younger even though their years show they are not younger. This is because laughter affects the body in a positive way.

Ririan Project notes, "For hundreds of years, it has been acknowledged that 'Laughter is the best Medicine'. Breakthrough scientific research is shedding new light on the physiological beneficial effects of humor on health. Laughter can come in handy, whether it’s for dealing with an illness, the pressures of daily living, stress, coping at work even, laughter can dramatically change the quality and outlook of our lives."

The following are the benefits of laughter both psychologically, socially and physically:


Summer Laughter
Summer Laughter | Source

It releases stress

Studies have shown laughter reduces the level of stress or relieves stress. If you are stressed by something, when you come across a humor or joke and end up laughing or smiling, it will distract you from the problem or stress at hand. After laughing, you will feel good about yourself, and be able to deal with the problem or stress clearly. This is because laughter relieves or calms the mind and muscles, at the end you feel relax as you feel the heavy burden or weight is released from your shoulders.

This is brought out clearly by magazine in the article titled 'The Benefits of Laughter: How Laughter Can Reduce Stress and Increase Health.' "Laughter reduces the level of stress hormones like cortisol, epinephrine (adrenaline), dopamine, and growth hormone. It also increases the level of health-enhancing hormones like enorphins."

Boosts immune system

A weak immune system means the body is not capable of fighting infections or diseases. This in turn means the person with weak immune system will be susceptible or vulnerable to infections for the body is unable to fight infections that enter the body.

"Laughter increases the number of antibody-producing cells... and enhance the effectiveness of T cells," states T-cells are a type of white blood cells. Their function is to fight only one type of virus. This is in contrast to macrophages which can fight any type of virus that invades the body.

Stress, anger, worry and other negative thoughts or feelings, lead to the immune system to be weak.

Protects the Heart and Makes You Feel Good

Have you realized when you laugh, you feel good about yourself? Your mind and body relaxes. This is the miraculous effect of laughing.

Laughter helps in lowering blood pressure,increases the circulation of blood - flow of blood in your vessels - as your heart beats harder, as you inhale large amounts of oxygen. Remember, when you laugh, you breath in a lot of oxygen, at the same exhaling carbon dioxide as the diaphragm contracts and relaxes. Not only does it help in lowering blood pressure, also other cardiovascular problems.

Did you know laughter is a form of exercise? When you laugh you are doing exercise thereby strengthening your muscles especially the muscles of heart. However, it does not mean you substitute laughter with exercise.

"Amazing Laughter" sculpture by Yue Minjun
"Amazing Laughter" sculpture by Yue Minjun | Source

Eases tension

Have you ever been in a tensed situation, then someone cracked a joke or said something humorous, then your body relaxed and if you were fearful, afraid or worried, your mind relaxed? That is the magic, sorry the miraculous effect of laughter.

What do you do when you have met your girlfriend, and during the conversation those special, well-meant and calculated words seem not come out of your lips such as "I love you," "You mean the whole world to me," "My sweet pawpaw you make my heart linger linger, or "When I see you my heart beats like the speed of missile?"

Maybe you are a shy guy like me such that you arrive at a point when the two of you want to part and say good-byes. Now, you want to hug your babe, baby, honey, sweety pawpaw, darling, chick but the hands seem not to be moving or responding. The brain itself seems flabbergasted, speechless or dumbfounded, I do not know why for it is supposed to send the signal for the muscles of your hand to move but it seems to be stranded, even though in your brain you see yourself hugging the other half of yours. You end up shaking hands and you are sure the lady felt bad. Men, ladies love hugs. What do you do after she leaves?

Of course, blame yourself, hate yourself, cuss and insult yourself, and if possible hit your face on the wall if you are near it. This is when a person makes fun of that situation, ending smiling or laughing. It relieves the sad feelings, helping you feeling better and appreciating in good faith you messed up, but that you couldn't hep it.

In any case, if the lady loves you, she needs to understand men boast of how strong they are but when it comes to uttering simple words such as "I love you" it is a disaster. No wonder ladies, when it comes to a man proposing to a lady, it is the hardest thing for a man. This is when ladies you need to crack a joke or say something humorous to ease the tension.

Don't ever think it is only children who tense when they see a syringe. I mean, looking at the length of the needle and knowing how long it has to disappear into your skin before it comes out, the pain you have already felt in your mind before feeling it physically. That is why doctors or nurses crack jokes or say something humorous to ease the tension, especially realizing it is the buttock that will be the target of injection and the pain that will ensue. In any case, if you are tense you might end up in the operation room for the needle broke from the syringe and got stuck inside the skin.

Clear Perspective

Have you realized when you hear a joke or read a humorous story or funny anecdote or somebody said something funny, after having a good laugh you feel relaxed? The thing that was troubling you becomes small in your eyes, your mind is clear and you have a clear perspective and are able deal or solve the situation or problem well?

Next time, don't run for a bottle of bear, puff few cigarettes or use a little of marijuana. They do not make any situation better, they only add stress and confusion. The brain itself is intoxicated and in a state of "Oh my! What is not happening?'

Someone said if you drink in order to get rid of stress you should be aware stress does know how to swim. How true!

Strengthens relationships and promotes bonding

Laughter, the opposite of conflict and tension in relationships between couples, families and too lover-birds, strengthens them and the bonding is strong. Conflict causes the relationships to be apart thereby weakening the relationships. Look at families that are always happy together, and you will get the idea. Even during hard times they make jokes.


Laughter | Source

Health Benefits of Laughter

In conclusion, laughter is good for your health. Smiling also does help a lot.

Actually, you will notice smiling is addictive. Try walking while smiling and see whether the person who passes opposite you will not smile. When teaching in a class try and smile, and you will notice how relaxed you will feel and the effect of it.

At one time, while I was walking and I thought of something funny somebody said, I ended up smiling till two women who were walking towards my direction were forced to smile. I think they giggled. It is that contagious. And, you never know, the positive effect it will have on a person who comes across your smile

The Benefits of Laughter


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