If you are feeling down or stressed, getting a hearty chuckle in may help boost your mood. Blue Care Network is sponsoring the Clean Comedy Showcase at Gilda’s Club, fourth annual LaughFest in Grand Rapids, March 6-16. LaughFest celebrates the healthy benefits that can come from frequent jovial chuckles.
Jeff Connolly, BCBSM vice president and president of West Michigan Operations and Managed Care, recently spoke on the health benefits of laughter.
“The muscular movements of laughing trigger the release of endorphins in the brain which provides a ‘feel good’ effect. A chuckle and a good hearty belly laugh decreases stress, helps a person develop coping skills, improves your blood pressure and blood flow, provides a burst of energy for exercise, manages pain, boosts social skills, boosts the immune system and energizes the organs and reduces aggression.”
Connolly also mentions that laughter burns calories.
“When you laugh, your heart rate rises about 10-20 percent causing an increase in your metabolism, which stays increased, allowing you to burn extra calories even when you stop laughing. “
The amount of calories you burn depends on how hard you laugh. Laughing for approximately 15 minutes a day can burn between 10 and 40 calories.
If you need more reasons to laugh, join BCN March 6-8 for the Clean Comedy Showcase where four comedians will be showcased each night.
Photo credit: MaryBeth Carroll