By Jena Williams

The-Power-of-Laughter

When deciding which movie to rent – the comedy or drama – should you consider your heart? How about which friend to call? The one who stresses you out, or the one who makes you laugh? How about when you drip your lunch on your shirt? Giggle or grumble?

Research shows you should choose to laugh if you want to protect your heart.

A University of Maryland Medical Center study found that people with heart disease were 40% less likely to laugh than people without heart disease. This study correlates with what doctors already knew: that mental stress is associated with impairment of the endothelium, the protective barrier lining our blood vessels.

Two studies by the American College of Sports Medicine back this up. They compared participants’ blood pressures while watching a comedy or a serious documentary. Comedy watchers had improved blood pressure and the positive effects lasted for 24 hours.

It makes sense to find opportunities and look for reasons to laugh each day.

Feel like you’ve forgotten what a laugh feels like? Spend some time with a toddler and let the grins begin.

For more info:

Laughter is Good for Your Heart, According to a New UMMC Study:
http://umm.edu/news-and-events/news-releases/2000/laughter-is-good-for-your-heart-according-to-a-new-ummc-study#ixzz2vrS9t8QF

American College of Sports Medicine , Laugh a Little to Help Protect Heart, Lower Blood Pressure: http://www.acsm.org/about-acsm/media-room/news-releases/2011/08/01/laugh-a-little-to-help-protect-heart-lower-blood-pressure and
http://health.usnews.com/health-news/family-health/heart/articles/2009/05/29/laughter-can-boost-heart-health