Laughter can play a valuable role in heart disease prevention.
Research into the positive effects of laughter is generating a global interest into humor and well-being. The Association for Applied and Therapeutic Humor sites this official definition of Therapeutic Humor: “Any intervention that promotes health and wellness by stimulating a playful discovery, expression or appreciation of the absurdity or incongruity of life’s situations…This intervention may enhance health or be used as a complementary treatment of illness to facilitate healing or coping, whether physical, emotional, cognitive, social or spiritual.”
Laughter and heart disease prevention is gaining attention from the medical community. Laughter is proving to be a tool to protect ourselves from heart disease. Dr. Michael Miller, director of the Center for Preventive Cardiology at the University of Maryland Medical Center, sums up the benefits of laughter: “We don’t know yet why laughing protects the heart, but we know that mental stress is associated with impairment of the endothelium, the protective barrier lining our blood vessels. This can cause a series of inflammatory reactions that lead to fat and cholesterol build-up in the coronary arteries and ultimately to a heart attack…The ability to laugh — either naturally or as learned behavior may have important implications in societies such as the U.S. where heart disease remains the number one killer.”
Interestingly, one can exercise both mind and body is a class called “laughter yoga.” This trend has been active in India and China for years and is now part of a growing trend in the United States. The students are re-learning something children already know instinctively — that laughter makes you feel better. Barb Fisher, a certified laughter yoga teacher, states that “kids laugh about 400 times a day, and adults only about 15…Laughter is a gift that has been given to us to make us feel better.”
For more in depth information and scientific studies supporting laughter as therapy, visit the following brilliant article:
Now…just TRY not to laugh at these darling twins dancing to their dad’s guitar music:
Now that was funny! Watch it again, — notice how much better you feel.