Laughter: The Best Medicine?

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Some researchers say that laughter really is the best medicine for your heart and soul. That's exactly why several dozen gathered at Colorado College Sunday afternoon.

They participated in a series of laughing exercises, what they called "laughter yoga" in honor of World Laughter Day. "The purpose of the exercise is 3-fold. First, to increase oxygenation; second, to improve their mood; and third, to improve social interaction," Dr. Tomi-Ann Roberts, CC psychology professor and “laughter leader” said.

What starts out as a fake laugh eventually becomes real. "Putting on a laugh, putting on a smile, initiates a feel good feeling of real happiness." Just hearing the people laugh even makes bystanders giggle.

Tricia Waters, a participant, said, "I learned you can laugh even when you don't feel like it." Jacob Weiss agreed, "I definetely feel more energized than I did when I walked in."

We get a sort of happy feeling when we crack up and laughing is easily contagious.

If you need another reason to chuckle, some researchers said that laughing 10 to 15 minutes a day can burn up to 50 calories, and they believe it can fight stress, increase the body's immune system, and even help diabetics reduce their blood sugar levels.