Smile to prevent Heart Disease!
As I look outside today, it is a typical winter day in Seattle: cold, damp, and overcast with a light drizzle. The last thing I feel like doing on a day like today is smiling. However, it may be just the thing that helps me feel better in the here and now, and helps my heart in the long-run.
The act of smiling is known to release endorphins, hormones which make you feel, well, fabulous. Things that have made me smile include The Simpsons circa mid-1990s, Me Talk Pretty One Day by David Sedaris (especially read aloud), 30 Rock (love Alec Baldwin), and any stand-up by Amy Schumer.
Think of something that makes you smile, and keep reading!
Now that those endorphins are working for you, you will be pleased to read that in 2001 researchers from Johns Hopkins found that a positive attitude is the best prevention for heart disease. Good attitudes were shown to cut in half the risk of a heart attack, regardless of age, race, and gender of those with more pessimistic attitudes.
So smile today and your heart will love you for years to come!
Author: Dr. Emily Gonzalez, Naturopathic Physician