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Laughter Really Is the Best Medicine

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Since the 80s, we’ve known that long-term stress can negatively impact our health. If we feel anxious, angry or chronically tense, our immune system suffers.

Several years ago, researchers at Loma Linda University found that simply anticipating having a good laugh could produce health-protecting hormones. Endorphins increased 27% and human growth hormone (a top anti-aging hormone) increased a whopping 87% when people merely thought about watching a funny video. (Gee, maybe major league baseball players should be watching more Saturday Night Live!)

More recently, researchers followed up their earlier research to see if a laughter-filled hour or two could have a similar effect on stress hormones. The study, though small, found that the stress hormones cortisol, adrenaline and dopac (a byproduct of dopamine) dropped as much as 40 – 70%!

The Bottom Line: Protect your health with a daily dose of humor. Don’t just think of it as a time out. Realize that just anticipating having a good laugh can have a cascade of positive physiological effects on your body.

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8 responses to “Laughter Really Is the Best Medicine”

  1. […] is the original post: Laughter Really Is the Best Medicine – Live in the Now AKPC_IDS += "1353,"; Share and […]

  2. Sue says:

    I read about a study done at University of Maryland Medical Center which revealed that laughter, along with an active sense of humor, may help protect you against a heart attack. The study found that people with heart disease were 40 percent less likely to laugh in a variety of situations compared to people of the same age without heart disease. The new recommendation for a healthy heart is exercise, eat right, take quality vitamins and supplements, and laugh a few times a day.

  3. Eva says:

    I recently had a laugh attack in a restaurant and it was just what I needed…..put me in the best mood! There is nothing like a good belly laugh and losing control….would really like more of those!

  4. […] to Dr. Madan Kataria, laughter is truly the best prescription for wellness. In the midst of researching the health benefits of laughter for an article he was writing in 1995 […]

  5. […] no side effects and no steep costs, it turns out laughter really may be the best medicine for elderly dementia patients. A new study, led by humor therapist Jean-Paul Bell and aptly named […]

  6. […] no side effects and no steep costs, it turns out laughter really may be the best medicine for elderly dementia patients. A new study, led by humor therapist Jean-Paul Bell and aptly named […]

  7. […] will increase your feelings of well-being and reduce stress hormones and depression. So this year, laugh more; it will increase endorphins, decrease stress hormones, and strengthen your immune system. And […]

  8. Nice read. Right, a good laugh is important for body and health

    We would like to share our thoughts on the laughter benefits as well. Here:
    http://visionshine.com/laughter-is-the-best-medicine/