You may feel that Diabetes is no laughing matter. But is laughter really the best medicine?
Diabetes and Stress
A Diabetes diagnosis can be frightening and stressful. But laughter should be one of the first prescribed medications. That doesn’t mean that you should not take your diagnosis seriously. It simply means watch your stress levels. But does laughter affect diabetes?
Acute stress causes adrenalin and other stress hormones to spike. When you experience sudden or increased levels of stress, your body releases more glucose for quick energy. Therefore, your blood sugar levels increase. Chronic low-level stress is linked to a variety of health conditions. Poor immune function, heart disease, cancer and type 2 diabetes are all affected by stress.
Stress can also cause poor judgment in food and fitness choices. You may not take the time necessary for your daily work-out. Instead of healthy portions of non-starchy nutritious foods, you take shortcuts. You may find yourself bingeing on junk food or in the drive thru of the local fast food joint for convenience. You will be making a short-term fix a long-term cost.
So what makes you laugh?
A powerful antidote to stress is laughter. Laughter can balance mind, body, and soul. Humor lessens the burden and helps you to release anger and frustrations. Laughter relaxes the body and boosts the immune system by decreasing stress hormones and in turn increasing immune cells.
If you have chronic stress in your life or if you are a high-strung individual learn to lessen the stress. Be mindful of the triggers and avoid situations that are knowingly stressful. If unavoidable, then find ways to cope. Meet up with friends for a few laughs, watch a light hearted comedy, see a silly movie, go to the comedy club or read a funny story. Laughter really is the best medicine for stress.