Laugh your heart out: The ‘secret’ to maintaining a happy and healthy heart

Scroll through the internet, and you’ll find several ways to keep your heart healthy and happy! But what’s better than just having a good laugh? Yes ladies, you heard it right.
ways to help you laugh more
Some laughter a day keeps the cardiologist away. Image courtesy: Shutterstock
Geetika Sachdev Published: 18 Sep 2021, 11:00 am IST
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We’ve often heard people say ‘an apple a day keeps the doctor away’, and that sounds a tad boring. But what if we say that a good laughter session is the key to maintaining your health; heart health, in particular. More often than not, we get so caught up in our daily lives that we forget to find joy in the everyday. Just getting together with your friends and family, and laughing like there’s no tomorrow is all you need. Some giggles, and then some tears (the happy ones, of course). Not just your heart, but your mind and immune system will be equally happy. 

Why is it so?

Of course, when we laugh, it means we are happy. You may not realise but your emotions play a huge role. So, in case you are sad, angry or even upset, your heart will feel all the effects. No wonder, those who experience high levels of stress are most commonly diagnosed with cardiac issues. 

laughing good for heart
Laugh it off baby! Image courtesy: Shutterstock

“Let’s just say you are angry or upset, your body is likely to release large amounts of cortisol, which in turn, will increase inflammation in the body. If this persists, you are, of course, more prone to heart attacks,” says Dr Krishna Pujari, a Pune-based cardiologist. 

On the other hand, when you laugh without a care in the world, your body releases endorphins. Your mind and heart are both in a positive and happy state, and you instantly feel better! 

In fact, a study conducted by researchers at University of Texas, Austin included 17 healthy adults, who had to watch a funny 30-minute video of their choice or a documentary. Their blood tests were taken, before and after the show. The findings reveal that artery function and flexibility improved in those who watched a comedy, and stayed that way for almost 24 hours. 

laughing good for heart
A healthy heart means a healthy you! Image courtesy: Shutterstock
The key to a happy heart

By now, we already know that a happy heart is one that’s healthy. And the easiest way to pump it up is by laughing as much as you can. So, let’s go through some of its benefits for your heart:

1. Decreases the risk of heart attacks

When you laugh your ‘heart’ out, your heart rate goes up, and your breathing becomes deeper. This means that your heart is receiving more oxygenated blood, which in turn, enhances your vascular function.

2. Prevents heart disease

“With improved vascular function and circulation, the diagnosis of heart disease certainly goes down. That’s because more circulation means your heart remains healthy,” adds Dr Pujari.

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laughing good for heart
Your heart might need some TLC! Image courtesy: Shutterstock

3. Reduces blood pressure

When your body releases endorphins, it enters a relaxed state and your blood pressure automatically goes down. A combination of these ‘feel good’ hormones along with lowered blood pressure doesn’t just enhance your mood, but also improves your anxiety and keeps your heart healthy.

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About the Author

An independent writer and journalist, Geetika loves sharp and fresh humour, just like her coffee! If not writing, you'll find her cafe-hopping and raiding the best book stores in town. ...Read More

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