‘LAUGH IT UP FUZZBALL’
-Han Solo in Star Wars V: The empire Strikes Back
By Dr. Jay Trussler
I’m not sure that Han Solo was telling Chewbacca to “Laugh it up'” in order to improve the Wookie’s health, but there are proven benefits of laughter. Proverbs 17:22 is engraved on my stethoscope and it says, “Laughter is the best medicine.” Multiple studies have also been done on laughter and here is some of what the researchers have to say:
Laughter has been shown to provide a boost to the immune system by decreasing stress hormones (cortisol) and increasing immune cells and infection-fighting antibodies, thus improving your resistance to disease.
Laughter relaxes the whole body and can leave your muscles relaxed for up to 45 minutes.
Laughter helps protect the heart by improving blood flow.
Laughter can enhance learning ability and delayed recall (memory), specifically in older adults. Can’t remember where you put your keys? Watch The Golden Girls for 30 minutes and laugh out loud while watching it (Blanche is my favorite). Afterwards you won’t care that you can’t find your keys because you will be so late for wherever you were trying to go that you shouldn’t be leaving anyway; not to mention that you just boosted your immunity, relaxed your muscles, and improved some blood flow to your heart and other vital organs. If you laugh hard enough you may even blow some gross mucous out of your nose and we all know that does NOT need to be in there.
Roacha prescription for laughter, so get to laughing. –Dr J