Beginning with April Fools Day, National Humor Month, in April, was conceived as a means to heighten public awareness of the therapeutic value of humor. A variety of studies have now proven that there is truth in the proverb "Laughter is good medicine."
Laughter and joy, the benchmarks of humor, lead to improved well being, boosted morale, increased communication skills, and an enriched quality of life. Here are just some of the many health benefits of laughter:
- 1. Strengthens the immune system
- 2. Boosts mood
- 3. Diminishes pain
- 4. Protects you from the damaging affects of stress
- 5. Relaxes the whole body
- 6. Decreases stress hormones
- 7. Releases endorphins
- 8. Improves the function of blood vessels and protects the heart
- 9. Burns calories
- 10. A study in Norway found that people with strong senses of humor outlived those that don't laugh often.
Humor, as a tool to lift ailing spirits, is an established notion supported by scientific research. The curative power of laughter and its ability to relieve debilitating stress and burnout may indeed be one of the great medical discoveries of our time!