So let’s keep those jokes coming our way.
Next time you’re caught watching YouTube videos of tumbling cats, just tell your boss you’re taking your daily vitamins. According to a variety research, laughter really is the best medicine.
Besides making you really fun to be around at parties, laughing offers a multitude of health benefits. It improves your mood, relieves stress and supports your heart. Now there’s a solid reason to hang out with Netflix and indulge in Seth Rogen films all day.
Working in high-pressure environments and dwelling in crowded cities make it hard to find humor in the every day. We all need that someone or something to make us laugh.
It breaks the tension, loosens things up and lightens our loads. There really are no downsides to letting it out with laughs.
Laughter lands you the girl, makes you fall for the funny guy and never look back, and improves your friendships. All this humorous quality time isn’t just for your own fun though, it’s also favorable for your body’s wellness.
It’s time we start hanging out with our funny friends more often. We can thank them for helping us live longer lives. (Or, you can just check out the Elite Daily Humor section, too. We hear it’s really good for your health…)
Here are six reasons why we all need to laugh more:
1. Strengthens memory recall
Researchers at California’s Loma Linda University found that older adults performed significantly better on short-term memory tests after watching funny videos.
Humor delivers more than just comic relief, it also greatly improves recall abilities by stimulating more gamma brain waves. Have you laughed today?
2. Prevents heart disease
It’s important that you can laugh at yourself. Having a sense humor and learning to laugh more may help guard against potential heart attacks, according to a 2009 study by cardiologists at the University of Maryland Medical Center.
The groundbreaking study found that people with heart disease were 40 percent less likely to let out a chuckle in everyday life situations compared to people of the same age without heart disease.
All those quotes about not taking life too seriously because you’re not coming out of it alive actually have some science behind them.
3. Burns calories
Good news if you don’t want to go to the gym today and instead sit on your couch viewing Amy Schumer reruns: Big-belly laughing for just 15 minutes per day burns anywhere from 10-40 calories.
According to a study published in the International Journal of Obesity, laughing makes the heart beat faster, works the muscles and expends 10 to 20 percent more energy than at rest.
While that number might seem insignificant, it can result in a 1- to 4-pound weight loss per year — just by having a good time.
4. Relieves pain
This is no joke, laughter can ease pain by encouraging the body to produce natural endogenous painkillers. The Mayo Clinicsuggests that the laughing also breaks pain-spasm cycles common to muscle disorders. Whether you’re in physical or mental pain, laughing helps you to cope.
Hmm, maybe this explains why we love watching “Sex and the City” after an awful date or traumatic breakup.
5. Releases endorphins
The physical act of laughing triggers an increase in endorphins. Muscle movements involved in producing the familiar “ha, ha, ha” cause your brain to release these feel-good chemicals, which is why we enjoy laughing until it hurts.
Like Elle Woods knows, endorphins make you happy, plus laughter makes you happy — you’re just one big ball of fun.
6. Eases stress
By stimulating oxygen to your organs and enhancing muscle relaxation, laughter has a very welcoming way of relieving everyday stressors.
A booming laugh aids in your circulation and increases your heart rate and blood pressure, which, in turn, helps you to loosen up and shake it out, Florence + The Machines not necessary. No wonder why watching the Housewives makes us feel so good about ourselves…
About the author
Laura Argintar is a Senior Women’s Editor at Elite Daily, comedienne and low-key science nerd. Listed among her achievements are performing stand-up throughout New York City, graduating with honors from the University of Michigan with a Bachelor of Science and being the first woman in history to twerk at a 2 Chainz concert. LARG – as her friends call her — enjoys covering women’s topics, watching celebrities self-destruct and rising to any occasion.
This article originally appeared on Elite Daily.
Phot credit: Amir Kuckovic/flickr