Laughter Helps You Live Longer

A laughing Japanese school girl with her friends, all in their school uniforms eating ice cream cones.

People who are generous, particularly generous in spirit, and have true empathy for people. (Image: Shalom Rufeisen via Dreamstime)

Research reveals that laughter can help you live longer! The Chinese saying “Smiles make one young” reveals a Chinese way of maintaining health and longevity. Emotions and health are closely related. Surveys find that people who have lived a long life, even in different countries and with different habits, have one thing in common: a “good mind.”

A positive mind is the best path to longevity

When it comes to how to live longer, people usually think of not smoking, not drinking, more exercise, a balanced diet, more vegetarian meals, fewer carbs, etc. It is puzzling that some long-lived elderly have a chaotic lifestyle. Some have smoked all their lives, drunk alcohol every day, have a sweet tooth, are overweight, but they still live longer. Why is this? The truth is that maintaining a good mindset is the best way to live longer.

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A number of studies find that laughing is equivalent to aerobic exercise. When a person laughs, the abdominal muscles and many other muscles in the body are involved in the exercise and the body burns 20 percent more calories. This has various health benefits and is beneficial for longevity. According to a study conducted by Associate Professor Kondo of the University of Tokyo on 20,000 65-year-olds, laughing reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease with those who do not laugh often having a 1.6 times higher risk of stroke and a 1.2 times higher risk of myocardial infarction than those who do laugh. If the risk of disease can be reduced, this certainly means a greater chance of living longer and a better quality of life.

Black and white photo of three old men laughing together in a coffee shop.
Laughing reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease. (Image: David Bergin via Flickr / CC BY 2.0 )

Laughter has many benefits

Promotes digestion

When you laugh, the blood circulation in your body is accelerated and the body’s metabolism is boosted. Many muscles are involved in the activity, and laughter can help promote digestion.

Clear the lungs and nourish them

It is said in Chinese medicine that “laughter cleanses the lungs.” When you laugh, the lungs enter a state of deep breathing, which in turn helps cleanse the lungs of toxins and increase lung capacity.


According to the results of an Indian pharmaceutical study, when a person laughs, the phagocytes produced in the body will be significantly increased, and these phagocytes will participate in the destruction of tumor cells, so it has the effect of cancer prevention.

Prevention of diabetes

Studies have shown that laughter can reduce a Type 2 diabetic’s blood sugar, which means the person may no longer require medication for blood sugar control.

A positive and optimistic state of mind

If you want to live longer, there is “treasure” in having a good attitude. Often, laughing can help relieve people’s psychological pressure, eliminate sadness, depression, and other bad emotions. Laughter can help people maintain a positive and optimistic state of mind.

Laughing girl wearing a jacket gets splashed with water.
Laughter can help people maintain a positive and optimistic state of mind. (Image: via © Serhiy Divin)

The most important thing in life is to be happy. Laughing is a great help to your body and mind and can be said to be the “magic weapon” in your pursuit of a long and healthy life. However, some reserved people are reluctant to show their smiles, and they even believe that laughing is an unruly act, unaware that this belief can harm their health. It is advisable to smile more often!

The writer of this story is not a medical professional, and the information in this story has been collected from reliable sources — every precaution has been taken to ensure its accuracy. The information provided is for general information purposes only, and should not be substituted for professional health care.

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