Isn’t amazing how kids can laugh so unselfconsciously? For many of us grownups, being able to let it all go, and laugh until we cry, or until we pee our pants, is something that we lose somewhere along the way. We get so obsessed with looking cool, or behaving appropriately, we quickly learn how to suppress our emotions and hide our true feelings. It turns out though, that laughing is actually really good for you. So, the next time you hold back your laughter, remember that these are ten of the things that you will be depriving yourself of.
1. It boosts your immune system
People who laugh out loud are far less likely to catch a cold or get the flu. When you laugh, your body releases feel-good hormones that reduce your stress levels and make you feel content and happy. Basically, when you are in a good mood, your immune system works better, so laughing will indeed help you fight off disease and infection.
2. It is good for the cardiovascular system
Laughing also gives your heart a bit of a boost too. When you laugh, your blood pressure falls slightly and your circulation improves. If you laugh more, it could help stop you developing a high blood pressure problem and perhaps even help to prevent heart disease.
3. It is good for your mental health
Those feel-good hormones that laughter releases will help to combat stress and alleviate depression. Research has shown that, even if you make yourself laugh, these hormones will be released. The effect that a laugh has on your emotions lasts for some time after the funny moment too, so a laugh could lift your mood for longer than you think.
4. It makes you more attractive
A happy, laughing person is far more attractive to the opposite sex than a down in the dumps, grumpy one. If you are the one laughing in a crowded room, then you will be the one that people will look at and want to be with.
5. Laughing relaxes all your muscles
The reason that people do literally pee themselves laughing is that laughter makes all the muscles in your body relax. A good laugh is the perfect remedy for a stressful day at work. It will boost your mood and relieve all the tension in your muscles.
6. It increases the oxygen in your blood
One of the reasons that you feel so much better after a really good laugh is that, when you laugh, it gives your lungs a good clear out and you take in more oxygen. This has the double effect of both giving you more energy during the day and helping you sleep better at night.
7. It will make connecting with other people easier
Once you have shared a good with someone, you somehow become more connected. Even having a laugh with a complete stranger breaks the ice and breaks down the barriers between two people. Laughter also makes you appear to be a more open person and more approachable.
8. Laughter brings you back to the present
If you have a lot of things on your mind, then a good laugh will soon stop those thoughts whirling around in your head. When you are laughing, you forget the past and you don’t think about the future. All you are thinking about is whatever it was that made you laugh.
9. Laugher breaks down cultural barriers
Laughter is universal, right across the world. Even if the different languages mean that you have no idea what the other person is laughing about, their laughter will still be infectious. Maybe world leaders should employ a stand-up comedian as a warm up act at the next UN meeting.
10. It is a natural pain killer
Laughing does make things a whole lot better, and it can actually suppress physical pain too. The endorphins that laughter releases into the body act as an analgesic that kills pain. Laughter isn’t a cure for everything, but a just a little bit more laughing could do you the world of good.
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