Wellness Wednesday: The healing power of laughter

There is one aspect of Wellness Travel that most do not consider: the healing power of laughter. That’s right. Wellness Travel is not confined to spa get-aways or the latest spinning class on a cruise. Every time you laugh on your vacation or during your travels, you are partaking in wellness whether you realize it or not. And here’s why I consider laughter to be Wellness Travel.

  • Laughter relaxes the whole body. A good, hearty laugh relieves physical tension and stress, leaving your muscles relaxed for up to 45 minutes after.
  • Laughter boosts the immune system. Laughter decreases stress hormones and increases immune cells and infection-fighting antibodies, thus improving your resistance to disease.
  • Laughter triggers the release of endorphins, the body’s natural feel-good chemicals. Endorphins promote an overall sense of well-being and can even temporarily relieve pain.
  • Laughter protects the heart. Laughter improves the function of blood vessels and increases blood flow, which can help protect you against a heart attack and other cardiovascular problems.
  • Laughter dissolves distressing emotions. You can’t feel anxious, angry, or sad when you’re laughing.
  • Laughter helps you relax and recharge. It reduces stress and increases energy, enabling you to stay focused and accomplish more.
  • Humor shifts perspective, allowing you to see situations in a more realistic, less threatening light. A humorous perspective creates psychological distance, which can help you avoid feeling overwhelmed.

There is a lot more that laughter can do for you, check out this article.

So the next time you’re laughing on your travels, consider that Wellness Travel because you’re getting better with each laugh.

[SOURCE: Laughter Is the Best Medicine, Melinda Smith, M.A., and Jeanne Segal, Ph.D., February 2016.]

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