Humor is the vitamin of longevity

Humor is the vitamin of longevity
Picture: Prostockstudio | Dreamstime
Victoria Mamaeva
Pharmaceutical Specialist

Humor is a kind and positive attitude, a bright palette of a boring life, relief from a depressive mood and freedom when faced with difficulties.

Many studies have shown that humor can make people happy and healthy, humor can increase the confidence and courage of people who are already sick to fight illness, and humor can also make it easier to adopt a healthy lifestyle, thereby extending life.

Humor is a good way to prevent illness

In the rapidly changing life of modern society, many people feel physically and mentally exhausted, and stress undermines health all the time. An early study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association found that stress increased the risk of 41 types of autoimmune diseases by 36%, such as psoriasis and rheumatoid arthritis.

This study is the result of researchers comparing more than 106,000 patients with stress disorders with more than 1 million people without stress disorders. Why does stress cause autoimmune diseases? Some scientists suggest that high blood pressure causes lifestyle changes such as poor sleep, discontent and drunkenness.

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At this time, laughter is the best weapon against stress. An article published in British Heart Journal states that laughter can improve physical and mental health and prevent and treat illness by stimulating blood flow.

Michael Miller, director of the Center for Preventive Cardiology at the University of Maryland, who has studied the therapeutic function of laughter for decades, conducted an experiment. It consisted in watching films of different genres. The results showed that after watching the tragedy, the blood flow in 14 out of 20 people slowed down, and after watching the comedy in 19 out of 20 people increased. The difference in blood flow between the two emotions is over 50%. It can be seen that humor and comedy provide people with more beneficial nutrients and are more conducive to maintaining a positive and optimistic mood.

Yoga – an activity for the soul and body
Yoga – an activity for the soul and body

A positive and optimistic attitude can reduce people’s exposure to disease. A study published by Harvard University scientists at the 2020 European Respiratory Society International Conference found that maintaining an optimistic and positive attitude towards life may be the key to longevity.

This study surveyed 70,000 women over 8 years and found that those who are optimistic have a significantly reduced risk of dying from diseases such as heart disease, cancer and stroke. Researchers say that a positive and optimistic mindset is most beneficial for cardiovascular health, which may be because an optimistic outlook on life can lower blood lipids, reduce inflammation, and increase antioxidant levels.

Humor can dispel “heartfelt sadness” in seriously ill patients

Humor not only prevents the occurrence of diseases, but also helps people deal with difficult situations. Norwegian scientists have published a study report that adults with a sense of humor tend to live longer than those who lack the joy of life. This phenomenon is especially evident in cancer patients.

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After a 7-year follow-up survey of approximately 54,000 Norwegians, Sven Sveback, a researcher at the Faculty of Medicine at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology, published this report. The report shows that the greater the role of humor in the lives of patients, the higher their likelihood of surviving for 7 years.

Among the people surveyed, adults in the top quarter with the most sense of humor were 35% more likely to survive than adults in the bottom quarter with the least sense of humor. People with a great sense of humor are 70% less likely to die than people with no sense of humor.

Happiness – it is and you can be happy
Happiness – it is and you can be happy

An ingenious Japanese study found that patients who received laughter therapy had better cognitive performance and were less sick than those who did not. The specific laughter treatment plan is to allow patients to watch a traditional Japanese oral comedy show once every two weeks, for a total of 4 times.

This is because smiling can not only stimulate nerve cells to release endorphins, which can make people happy and relieve pain, but also activate natural killer cells. Natural killer cells ruthlessly eliminate the bad guys, such as cancer cells, virus-infected cells, and parasites.

According to Freud’s psychoanalytic theory, humor attempts to express repressed thoughts in a socially acceptable way. Humor is an affirmation of dignity, humor is an expression of open-mindedness, an artistic expression of optimism and generosity, and can be laughed at when faced with difficulties.

Can effectively influence people’s health behavior

Recently, the Australian-New Zealand Journal of Public Health published a systematic online review of humor-based strategies to address public health priorities. Research has shown that humor can be effective in influencing healthy behavior in people.

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This systematic review analyzes 13 studies over the past 10 years that use humor to convey serious messages covering topics such as mental health, breast cancer self-examination, skin cancer, and alcohol abuse.

The point is to make the fear information easy to accept. Humor, if used correctly, can act as an emotional buffer and remove some of the fears, thereby conveying potential information to the target audience and influencing their behavior and attitudes.

Affirmations – set yourself up in the affirmative
Affirmations – set yourself up in the affirmative

Humor has been shown to attract attention, reinforce memory, and relate positively to advertising messages. The researchers say humor can be used as a tool to encourage dialogue and exchange so that people can better absorb information about public health prevention and form their own healthy behavior habits.

Infancy is the best time to develop a sense of humor. Recently, a researcher from the University of Bristol in the UK found that a person’s sense of humor develops in the first few years of life. Babies learn to appreciate humor between the ages of 1 and 2 months, and 50% of babies start showing a sense of humor at 11 months. At 3 years old, he can say funny things. Nurturing humor is very important in the first four years of life. Given the importance of humor in life, parents can use it in their upbringing from an early age.

Humor helps to live not only to live a fun life, relieve depression and make people look at life and people with sunshine, but also helps to eliminate hostility, reduce friction and calm the mood. Humor is a spiritual “masseur” and a vitamin of longevity.

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