Thrive by IU Health

January 25, 2022

5 Health Benefits of Laughing

5 Health Benefits of Laughing

Have you ever heard the phrase “laughter is the best medicine?” Well, it turns out that it does have real benefits for your health. Researchers don’t fully understand why it impacts wellbeing the way it does, but they do know laughing does have a positive impact. Laughter can help your short-term physical condition by reducing stress and help your long-term health- helping you live to an older age. Here are the health benefits of a good laugh.

  • Reduces stress. Stress has many harmful effects on the body, including increasing your risk of heart disease. Laughter can reduce stress, and reduce the negative effects of stress.
  • Improve memory. In studies of older adults, laughter has been shown to improve cognitive function and memory in particular.
  • Burns calories. While it might not be the same as a rigorous workout, a good laugh does burn calories. If you are trying to live a healthy lifestyle, frequent laughter may help you- though of course diet and exercise should be the key components of your lifestyle.
  • Improve mental health. This may be the most obvious benefit laughter, but laughing makes you feel better about yourself. For people who suffer from mental illness like depression, laughter can help alleviate the negative effects of their disease.
  • Improve pain tolerance. Finally, laughter has been shown to improve an individual’s ability to tolerate pain. For people suffering from pain- whether from an injury or even chronic illness, laughter can help diminish pain.

So if you’re looking to improve your overall quality of life, watch a standup, put on a funny movie, or tell a joke. Laughing can truly make your life better.