Sun. Jan 16th, 2022

What do you call a pig that does karate? A pork chop. It may be no surprise to some that when you laugh, you feel better. No, really. Itʼs not a joke. Laughter can exercise your heart, elevate your mood, relieve stress, and boost your immune system. Researchers have discovered that, like the apple, a laugh a day can keep the doctor away. What happens when we laugh? First, laughter suppresses the stress hormones that, in turn, suppress your immune system. Once laughter has blocked stress hormones from putting a damper on your immune systemʼs party, laughter actually increases the immune systemʼs production of Gamma-interferon (a diseasefighting protein), T-cells (a major component of the immune response), and B-cells (disease-destroying antibodies). If laughter makes you cough, itʼs not because youʼre getting a cold. Laughter increases the concentration of salivary immunoglobulin A, which defends against infectious organisms entering through the respiratory tract.

If increasing your defenses against illness isnʼt enough, laughter also helps to strengthen your heart. In Jeffery Klugerʼs article “The Funny Thing about Laughter,” laughter was found to have a significant effect on lowering blood pressure, which means healthier hearts were found in those who laugh regularly. Laughing 100 times a day can be the equivalent to 15 minutes of aerobic exercise, so add funny movies to your exercise routine!

Stress mismanagement can lead to interferences with academic performance, health, and relationships. If you are capable of laughing (and we all are), then you can use laughter to help manage stress. Next time you feel “stressed out” try these small ways to add a little laughter to your life:
*Tell a joke.
*Watch your favorite Comedy
Central show.
*Make a funny face in the mirror
or for your friends.
*Do Madlibs.
*Go to a comedy club.
*Have someone tickle you.
*Watch Jerry Springer.
*Saturday Night Live!
*Put pantyhose over your head, then pull up (youʼll laugh when you see your face!).

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