Laugh Your Way to Better Health

Science is beginning to show how laughter benefits our mental and physical health. Researcher Emma Seppälä outlines some key benefits, and Mindful suggests tips for getting your "LOL" on.

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“The science of laughter—though still preliminary—suggests that it has tremendous benefits for our health and psychological well-being,” Emma Seppälä writes Scope, Stanford Medicine’s blog. Seppälä is the associate director of Stanford’s Center for Compassion and Altruism Research and Education and a research psychologist at the School of Medicine. She outlines 7 key findings on laughter, including boosting memory and resiliency and lowering cortisol levels. You can see the full list onScope.

So how can we start laughing more every day? Seems like a silly question—but hey, silliness is in order! Here’s Barry Boyce, Mindful‘s Editor-in-Chief, talking about why it’s important to ask ourselves that question. From Mindful‘s June 2015 issue:

Laughter is very serious business. Just ask John Cleese, who sings the praises of spontaneous laughter—“he who laughs most, learns best”—and believes “true laughter… destroys any kind of system of dividing people.” The Mayo Clinic is also big on laughing, since it not only “lightens your load mentally, it actually induces physical changes in your body, stimulating organs and circulation and relaxing muscles.

Ready for some lols? Read “LOL Now“—we look at 11 ways you can laugh your way to a healthier, less stressed-out life.