Is Laughter Really the Best Medicine?

We spoke with Dr Madan Kataria, Founder of Laughter University in Nashik, Maharashtra, India about the benefits of laughter for our health.

The results are astounding. There are so many scientific studies available since Dr Kataria founded Laughter University in 1995, that’s it’s impossible not to see the huge benefits to our health.

You see, it’s all due to the fact that it’s the brain which is responsible for the release of “happiness” chemicals we need to be healthy. Such as Dopamine, Serotonin, Oxytocin and Endorphins.

Some well-known facts about these chemicals include:

Known as the “feel-good” hormone, dopamine is a neurotransmitter that’s an important part of your brain’s reward system. It’s associated with pleasurable sensations, along with learning, memory, and more.
This hormone and neurotransmitter helps regulate your mood as well as your sleep, appetite, digestion, learning ability, and memory.
Often called the “love hormone,” oxytocin is essential for childbirth, breastfeeding, and strong parent-child bonding. It can also help promote trust, empathy, and bonding in relationships. Levels generally increase with physical affection.
These hormones are your body’s natural pain reliever, which your body produces in response to stress or discomfort. Levels may also increase when you engage in activities which give any form of pleasure such as eating, working out (and anything else)

The great thing is, laughter is one of the best ways to produce these chemicals, and the good thing for us is, that our brain can’t actually tell the difference between real laughter and fake laughter – the chemicals are produced equally!

Dr Kataria created Laughter Yoga based on this fact, and it’s the reason why one of the main activities of Laughter Yoga is laughing for no reason. Ha ha ha!

Of course there are other key factors which make Laughter Yoga so successful for stress reduction and improving health and wellbeing, which Certified Laughter Yoga Leader will teach during a Laughter Yoga session.

So you see – laughter really is the best medicine, and one of the most effective ways to laugh (when you can’t get to hang out with the people who make you laugh the most, or attend a live comedy show) is Laughter Yoga.

To find Laughter Yoga in your area, search our Accredited Practitioner directory. To find an Accredited Laughter Yoga trainer to become Certified as a Laughter Yoga Leader, just search our Accredited Training directory. Both directory links are also on our home page.