There is an ancient Bible proverb that says, “A merry heart does good like medicine; but a broken spirit dries the bones.”
Years later, after rigorous study, scientists have concluded that laughter really is the best medicine.
I often realize in the grind of my everyday routine as mom, wife and worker, that I haven’t had a good laugh in ages.
No one, save my husband and sisters, can provide me with a good stress-relieving, down-in-my-gut belly laugh like my girlfriends.
With them I can let loose and have fun, no holds barred. Yet, I rarely make time for my gal-pals in my busy schedule.
Experts from the Mayo Clinic highlighted the reasons why giggling with girlfriends is just what the doctor ordered.
Those doctors say a good laugh lifts you mentally and has great physical effects like stimulation of the heart, lungs and muscles.
Not only that, but laughter increases endorphins—the brain’s morphine-like chemical released during laughter, excitement, exercise, love and sex.
As if a nice gal-pal lunch wasn’t enough at face value, there is plenty of research that explains the positive nature of such a pow-wow.
According to a 10-year study of older people in Adelaide, Australia, satisfying friendships predict longevity better than close family ties.
This article, found on MSN/Lifestyle, stated those same friendships can also protect against obesity, depression and heart disease.
“When women get stressed, our instinct is often to find a friend and talk things through,”said Joan Borysenko, PhD and author of “Inner Peace for Busy Women.”
“Both touch and talk release the hormone oxytocin,which has a profoundly calming effect on your mind and body,” Borysenko said.
Great, I’ll take all the endorphins and oxytocin my brain can manage.
I’ve always understood the value of having a few close pals, but now even more than that, I have discovered the sanctuary my girlfriends provide.
Most of all, it’s the laughter and connection I cherish.
So moms, remember your value, the value of healthy stress relief and the value of a good laugh with a close pal.
Nearby Campbell has some charming places and a cute downtown area for strolling and a great lunch and laugh with the girls. Places such as the Cyprus Bistro & Café, which offers a fusion of Mediterranean cuisine, or Café Campbell, which offers Italian and European cuisine.
The same report from the Mayo Clinic gave additional merit to some positive long-term effects of laughter.
*A rollicking laugh fires up and then cools down your stress response and increases your heart rate and blood pressure, which results in a relaxed feeling.
*Laughter can also stimulate circulation and aid muscle relaxation, both of which reduce some of the physical symptoms of stress.
*Negative thoughts manifest into chemical reactions that can impact your body by bringing more stress into your system and decreasing your immunity. In contrast, positive thoughts actually release neuropeptides that help fight stress and potentially more-serious illnesses.
*Laughter may ease pain causing the body to produce its own natural painkillers. Laughter may also break the pain-spasm cycle common to muscle disorders.
*Laughter can also make it easier to cope with difficult situations. It also helps you connect with other people.
Go ahead and lol!