15th July 2024

The science and study of laughter

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The science and study of laughter is called Gelotology. The term originates from the Greek word gelos, which means laughter. Gelotology studies how laughing can affect human body and mind.

Gelotology was founded by William Finley Fry, Jr. (1924–2014), a former Associate Professor at Stanford University. He went on to found the International Society of Humor Studies (ISHS) in 1980.

Gelotologists and doctors recommend therapeutic humour to keep mind and body healthy. Laughing releases endorphins capable of reducing anxiety, stress and even physical pain. This stress buster also has beneficial effects against heart diseases, diabetes and asthma, and helps improve sleep, blood flow and immunity.

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