What did you do for red nose day?

Red nose day logo

I think that the idea of raising money for very worthy causes, over £75 Million this year by having fun and making people laugh is great. But on a very serious note for us all if we want to stay healthy we need to laugh much more.

 
Young children don’t have to be told to laugh. They laugh naturally and a lot more often than adults do. In fact, a study has shown that children laugh about 400 times a day as compared to adults who laugh 17 times a day. According to doctors we use only four muscles to smile, but when we frown we use 64 muscles — 16 times more. So save energy! 
 
Scientists tell us that laughing has a direct beneficial effect on our immune systems, it boosts our energy and it can even diminish pain - and laughing helps us to cope with stress. So the more we do it the better! 
 
There has been much research which is indicating that laughter is indeed the best medicine. More health-care professionals are finding that laughter helps to lower blood pressure, boost the immune system, and reduce stress hormones while triggering the release of endorphins, the body’s natural painkillers. The bottom line is that laughter helps to produce a wonderful sense of well-being.
 
Laughter is contagious and has no known side effects, unless you count laughing until you cry. Humour Therapy is showing up in hospitals around the country as being therapeutic. Studies even show that laughing actually raises levels of infection-fighting T-cells, disease-fighting proteins called Gamma-interferon and B-cells, which produce disease-destroying antibodies and also helps people to heal. The physical and emotional releases from laughing produce a cleansed feeling.
 
Laughter and humour give a light hearted perspective to life’s challenges and brings the focus away from negative emotions such as guilt, anger, fear and stress. In days gone by, rich people employed men to make the people of the court laugh, the jester or fool would entertain them with stories, riddles, acrobatics and so on – but, while making them laugh, there was a serious side to his work as the jester had to draw attention to things that were wrong so wrapped up in the stories and jokes were some difficult points and important issues. 
 
And that’s still the case today surely, when witty satirists draw our attention to injustices and inequalities in clever and amusing ways; they don’t make fun of us as such but rather those soppy sillinesses and pre-occupations with ourselves which are exposed so that they can be seen for what they are. 
 
So, in our laughter there is truth as well as fun – and if there’s a few quid for those who need it most too, that’s the best joke of all.
 
So don’t wait till 2015 and the next Red Nose day, get happy today or at least remind yourself of some of this year’s best bits log on to BBC iPlayer 
 

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