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Laughter as Medicine

Laughter as Medicine Laughter as Medicine

The Meadows Health Auxiliary held their monthly meeting on Monday, November 2, on the Front Porch of Vidalia First Baptist Church. The keynote speaker was Mary Alice Wilder, also known as Minnie Pearl, complete with her gingham dress and hat with the price tag still attached. Minnie Pearl is just one of the many characters Mary Alice portrays for laughs. As children, we used to laugh hundreds of times a day, but as adults, life tends to be more serious and laughter more infrequent, especially in these times of COVID-19 and national unrest. But by seeking out more opportunities for humor and laughter, one can improve emotional health, strengthen relationships, find greater happiness and even add years to one’s life.

Laughter is good for your health. Laughter relaxes the whole body, boosts the immune system, triggers the release of endorphins, protects the heart, burns calories, lightens anger’s heavy load, and may even help you live longer. A study in Norway found that people with a strong sense of humor outlived those who do not laugh as much. The difference was particularly notable for those battling cancer.

It is true: laughter is strong medicine. It draws people together in ways that trigger healthy physical and emotional changes in the body. Nothing works faster or more dependably to bring your mind and body back into balance than a good laugh. Humor lightens your burdens, inspires hope, connects you to others, and keeps you grounded, focused, and alert. It also helps you release anger and forgive sooner.

The Auxiliary enjoyed Minnie Pearl and her anecdotes. Laughter was held throughout the room, lifting spirits. And hopefully, everyone in attendance is just a little bit healthier for the experience.

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