We have been smiling and frowning since we were born. Many studies have shown that when we smile, we use an average of 17 muscles while by frowning, we use more than 43 muscles. Therefore, it’s better to smile rather than frown in order to lose less energy . However, this is not the only reason why we need to smile more often. Here is the science behind the advantages of smiling and how it can change our life:
Smiling Makes Us Happier
Researchers discovered that portraying different facial expressions change our mood. For example, there was a study in which the researchers gave volunteer instructions to make different facial expressions such as being disgusted, angry or happy. The volunteers reported that they in fact did feel happy when they gave the “joyous” facial expression. How about fake smiles? Even if you are not happy, you can trick your brain by having fake smiles. By doing so, your brain would secrete more happy hormones, decrease your heart rate and ultimately make you happy.
Check out this video below by BrainCraft, talking about whether or not smiling makes us happy:
Smiling Makes Us Healthier
According to a research in 2002, smiling is a free therapy, in that it causes a reduction in stress hormone levels, blood pressure and even risk of heart diseases. The latter is because stress is a cause of heart diseases such as heart attacks, and reducing stress hormone levels causes the chance of heart diseases to be less.
The video below by TED highlights the importance and the power of smiling:
Smiling Makes Us Live Longer
In a study, Earnest Abel and the team of researchers at the Wayne State University in United States found out that baseball player’s lifespan increased with how often they smiled. The research looked at baseball card photos, and found that the players who smiled, lived an average lifespan of 80 years, and those who did not smile had a lifespan that averaged of 73 years. This is in fact related to the fact that smiling causes one to be healthier. Because when one smiles they have a reduced chance of getting heart diseases, the average life expectancy goes up.
Although, it has been proven that we need to smile and laugh more frequently, there are a few points that we need to consider:
- Make sure that nobody is offended when you are smiling and laughing
- Be careful of when and in which situation you are laughing