For a good laugh check out the video below.
A good laugh feels great, doesn’t it?
We’ll it turns out that the wonderful feeling we get from laughing is something we can actually make happen.
You don’t even need a reason for laughing – faking it works.
You read that right. Dr. Kataria, a medical doctor in India who started Laughter Yoga Clubs, found that the brain and body can’t tell the difference between fake laughter and the real thing.
He’s found that laughing lowers the level of stress hormones (epinephrine, cortisol, etc) in the blood by 28%, reduces systolic blood pressure by 6% and diastolic pressure by 4%, lifts your mood, helps you connect with people and promotes a positive outlook on life. And, he claims it strengthens your immune system.
John Cleese was astounded by an Indian doctor’s Laughter Yoga Club.
Yup. Laughter stopped John Cleese in his tracks when he visited one of Dr Madan Kataria’s Laughter Yoga Clubs in India.
It works. I checked out Dr. Kataria’s TED talk and joined in his Laughter Yoga exercise.
I got off my office chair. I clapped and shouted and breathed and started laughing for no special reason. I feel refreshed. I know it sounds a bit nutty, but it works!
Interested in checking out a Laughter Yoga Club in the GTA?
A bit self-conscious about laughing for no reason?
Start with a smile. It works like drugs, without the prescription. Smiles release neuropeptides that fight off stress.*
*B.L. Seaward i “Managing Stress: Principles and Strategies for Health and Well-Being,” Sudbury, Mass.: Jones and Bartlett; 2009:258.
Smile and you send dopamine, endorphins and serotonin coursing through your body.
These neuropeptides and neurotransmitters relax you and can lower heart rate and blood pressure. In fact, serotonin is what pharmaceutical anti-depressants trigger. So, yes, a smile is a mood lifter!**
**K.J. Karran et al, “Mind/Body Health: The Effect of Attitudes, Emotions and Relationships.”
Made you laugh!
Of course there’s always the “traditional approach” – laugh because someone said something funny. Toronto is blessed with some of the best comedy clubs in the world. You’ve probably heard of Yuk-Yuk’s, The Second City But there are other clubs like Absolute Comedy Club or Comedy Bar. And keep an eye out for comedy festivals. But be aware that all comedy content can be what the warnings on TV call “mature;” with course language and themes.
You also could look at the program listings on the Comedy Network. You can find “Just for Laughs,” with an almost endless supply of stand-up comics, and “Just for Laughs Gags,” with hidden-camera comedy on CBC-TV.
Remember; feeling good starts with a smile, and laughing doesn’t even need humor to start it going. “Laugh,” as they say, “And the world laughs with you.” Just start laughing. For no reason – it works!