Breast Health Challenge Tip #28

Laugh deeply each day.

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Laughter is an inexpensive healer and connector. It pulls us together, keeps us feeling youthful, shifts our perspective, unloads stress and reminds us to seek joy.

What Does Laughter Do For You?

There are many physiological and psychological benefits to laughter. It strengthens your immune response, stimulates circulation, improves cardiovascular and respiratory function, reduces stress hormones, elevates pain threshold, and releases endorphins, serotonin and dopamine to enhance mental and emotional functioning. The vagus nerve, which regulates parasympathetic stimulation, increases relaxation and decreases inflammation – is activated when we laugh. Laughter enhances learning and memory and improves problem-solving abilities and creativity. You can see why a good laugh each day can deter cancer – your immune system stays alert and you diminish the deleterious effects of chronic stress.

Research shows that humour improves our ability to cope with stress and anxiety by providing an alternative, less serious perspective to a difficulty. When our mood improves with laughter, we elevate self-esteem, resilience and well-being. We reduce negative thinking and depression. A great sense of humour correlates to feelings of hope, optimism, energy and vigour. Humour creates happier marriages, increases bonding and develops cohesiveness in families and communities.

Laughter and Breast Cancer

A therapeutic laughter program for breast cancer patients resulted in a decrease in anxiety, depression and stress, even after just one session. What a great addition this could be for women before or during surgery, chemo and radiation!

What Makes You Laugh?

What do you do for fun? What can you use to fill your daily laughter prescription? Funny movies, good friends, laughter yoga, joke books, satire, theatre, your young pet, kundalini yoga or team sports? Add something to the list of things you do for YOU!

Here are some funny movies to get you started … Anchorman, A Fish Called Wanda, Borat, The Life of Brian, Blazing Saddles, My Big Fat Greek Wedding, Shrek, Meet the Parents, Best in Show.

Share any other prescriptions for laughter with us!

References:

Laughter and Stress Relief in Cancer Patients: A Pilot Study.

The effects of laughter therapy on mood state and self-esteem in cancer patients undergoing radiation therapy: a randomized controlled trial.

Take the Breast Health Challenge!

Have a good laugh and take a photo or make a video of you afterwards, and post on your Facebook page, Youtube or Instagram with the hashtag #breasthealthchallenge between Oct 1-31. Challenge your friends to do the same.

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Let’s share what works!

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Upcoming Programs

For upcoming Healthy Breast Programs see http://mammalive.net/upcoming-courses/

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