Lovely Woman

7 Fantastic Health Benefits from Smiling

Girl with Glasses SmilingWhat if I told you that there is a way to improve your overall physical and mental health without taking a pill, changing your diet or even going to the doctor?   And what if I told you that you have the power to access this medical miracle right now at no cost?   Would you try it?  — Well all you have to do is – Smile.  That’s right smile.

 

The Benefits of Smiling

Smiling BoyResearchers have found that smiling produces a ton of great benefits, like slowing down the heart, reducing stress, and relieving pain in addition to making us look better and feeling happier.   How is this so?  When we smile chemicals are released from the brain.  These chemicals known as endorphins can help elevate our mood and give us a sense of wellbeing. This is why you feel so good when you smile. Our smiling feelings of wellbeing can be transferred to others when they see us smile.  It is the endorphins from our smiling that helps us reduce a harmful chemical called cortisol.  The less cortisol in our bodies the less stress and pain we feel.

Healthy, Genuine, Smiles

Offer JohnAll smiles are not alike; experts have found that only a genuine, full smile can produce the health benefits described earlier.  This healthy genuine smile called a “Duchenne Smile”, named for Guillaume Duchenne the pioneering 9th century French neurologist; involves using all the major muscles around the mouth and the eyes.   Simply put the more of those muscles we use in producing a genuine smile the more health benefits we get.

7 Fantastic Health Benefits

Wall Street Journal columnist Sumathi Reddy has uncovered 7 great benefits from smiling.  I present them mixed with my own commentary to underscore further the many easily attainable benefits from smiling.

1. Smiling Boosts Your Immune System

Smiling helps the immune system to work better. When you smile, immune function improves possibly because you are more relaxed.  That is why I advise my patients to smile as a way to prevent colds and flu.

2. Smiling Lowers Your Blood Pressure

Physician specializing in treating patients with high blood pressure have use this technique to demonstrate how smiling can cause a measurable reduction in blood pressure.  If you have a blood pressure monitor at home sit for a few minutes, take a reading. Then smile for a minute and take another reading while still smiling. Do you notice a difference?  Give it a try.

3.  Lifts the Face and Makes You Look Younger

Forget a facelift to look younger try smiling. When we use the Duchenne Smile, engaging all the major muscles around the mouth and the eyes can actually makes us look younger and feel better.

4. Smiling Changes Our Mood

Felling down try smiling!  The next time you are feeling down, try putting on a smile. There’s a good chance you mood will change for the better. Why?  Smiling can actually trick the body into thinking that you are feeling better than you actually are.  Helping you change your mood.

5. Smiling Can Help Us Live Longer

Researchers have found that the helpful benefits of smiling can prolong our lives.  According to one study people who smile live up to 7 years longer.

6.  Can Help Increase our Attention Span

When we are stressed our perceptions and attention span narrows.  Smiling counteracts this and widens our attention again, opening us back up to multitasking and insights that come from the fringes of our perception and our subconscious.

7. Smiling Can Lower the Heart Rate

Studies have found people who smile and laugh often are less likely to develop heart disease. Why? Because smiling slows the heart and relaxes the body allowing the heart to work without overworking.

The Bottom Line: Just Smile

Cheryl Harris2The body has an amazing ability to keep itself healthy with the simplest things. The take home message here is for better health we need more genuine smiles.  So take the advice in the classic song “Smile” written by Charlie Chapman……. “You’ll find that life is still worthwhile… If you’ll just Smile”

 

Marben Bland is a Writer, Speaker and Strategist focused on working with emerging biotech and high tech companies.  Comment on this post at marben@marbenband.com

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