The Lighter Side of Transformation

with Lisa Wessan, LICSW

The mirth diet

“It’s been said that laughter is good medicine, but it also may be good exercise, says LiveScience.com. In a series of studies, researchers at Loma Linda University in California found that repeated bouts of “mirthful laughter” offer some of the same benefits—including lower blood pressure and lower cholesterol—as moderate exercise. In their most recent study, researchers found that volunteers who laughed while watching videos experienced changed levels of the hormones ghrelin and leptin, which are known to regulate appetite. Those hormones are also affected by exercise. The findings, says study author Lee Berk, suggest that some sort of “laughter therapy” might be an option for patients who cannot use physical activity to normalize or enhance their appetite.” (THE WEEK May 6, 2010)

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