Laughing helps you lose weight? Maybe.

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It’s true. Laughing may help you lose weight, and definitely helps lift your mood.

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Laughing burns 20% more calories than sitting around frowning.

It burns calories, increases cardiovascular health, improves memory and makes you feel happy.

A good hearty laugh provides a workout for the lungs as they quickly inhale and exhale. This improves the circulation of blood around the body and the delivery of oxygen to all our organs and muscles. Perhaps the extra blood and oxygen supply to the brain explains the apparent memory and creativity boost research suggests is associated with laughing. You might have heard laughter is the food of the soul… the fact is laughing really is the best medicine for body and mind.

You might have heard laughter is the food of the soul… the fact is laughing really is the best medicine for body and mind.

Think of those times you laughed hysterically until your tummy hurt. Now there’s an ab workout that is more fun than crunches and planking. In fact when you laugh, many muscles in your body contract burning an estimated 20% more calories. Not an unpleasant way to work off a little treat.

When you laugh, many muscles in your body contract burning an estimated 20% more calories

Laughing also helps to keep you healthy by boosting your immune system. It stimulates the release of white blood cells that fight infection as well as hormones that act as natural pain killers and anti-inflammatories, thereby reducing the need for medication.

From a giggle to a side splitting cackle you know laughing makes you feel good. This is because it both distracts us from negative emotions and causes a reduction in stress hormones such as adrenalin and cortisol. We then become more resilient and better able to cope with the stresses of life. The added bonus of a little endorphin release lifts our mood turning an average day into a great day.

We are social beings who like to connect with others. Being known as a happy person who laughs a lot can improve our social life and relationships with others as people find us fun and positive to be around. And there’s nothing better than laughing so hard and long with a friend or colleague that you both forget what started you off in the first place.

4 ways to add more laugher to your life:

  1. Watch funny movies or TV series
  2. Look for funny video clips on You Tube
  3. Set up a ‘joke group’ on Facebook where everyone can share a good joke they hear – and read when they need a chuckle
  4. If something funny happens in the day, tell someone else – they get a laugh and you get to relive the fun all over again!

Rachel Livingstone Personal Trainer & Owner of The Health Hub www.healthhub.net.au

What makes you laugh out loud?

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Rachel Livingstone

CONTRIBUTOR

Rachel is a PT and Maternal Health specialist who found the gym at 14 through her weight lifting dad and never looked back. Originally from the UK she finally settled her wanderlusting feet on the shores of Sydney and can often be found on the back of a paddleboard exploring Rose Bay and the beautiful harbour.

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