Medical Research Findings - Page1
Scientists have discovered that laughter reduces feelings of pain, prevents bad stress reactions, protects the heart from heart disease, and boosts the brain's battle against infection.
Researchers from University of Maryland School of Medicine found a link between the health of blood vessels and laughter. The same group of people watched the comedy "King Pin" and the drama “Saving Private Ryan”, and then their blood vessels were measured. The researchers found that laughter causes blood vessels to dilate and stressful movies cause them to constrict.
The doctors reported that the effect of laughter was similar to the effects of exercise. "We don't recommend that you laugh and not exercise, but we do recommend that you try to laugh on a regular basis. Thirty minutes of exercise three times a week, and 15 minutes of laughter on a daily basis is probably good for the vascular system."
Another study at the same university showed that laughter is good for the heart. With three hundred volunteers participating, this study showed that people with heart disease laughed less at different life situations compared to people who did not have heart disease.
According to Dr. Lee Berk from Loma Linda School of Medicine, laughter boosts the immune system. His study also proved that laughter lowers the level of stress hormones.
Doctors also found out that people have different preferences when it comes to humor. One group of sick elderly people watched a 20-minute video of their choice, 3 days a week for 6 weeks. During the time that the patients were watching the videos, doctors found that they could significantly reduce the medication of the elderly patients. After this experiment, the hospital went back to the practice of showing videos that the patients did not choose. While watching videos that were not of their choosing, the patients went back to needing their full doses of medication.