Want to be healthier? Add a little laughter

    12:25 PM, Jan 25, 2013   |    comments
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    UNDATED (CNN) -- Trying to make some positive changes in your health this year? Even if you're watching your diet, upping your exercise and drinking more green tea, some cardiologists say you may just want to add a little laughter to your life.

    Hustle and bustle of the New Year got you down? Stressed out already? Maybe it's time to let it all out with a good laugh. Dr. Michael Miller with University of Maryland School of Medicine says, "Some studies suggest it lowers blood pressure, there have been other investigators who have shown it may have an effect on immune response, so perhaps better response from someone who has a common cold or infections when they laugh."

    Researchers have found that laughing not only loosens us up, and opens up our blood vessels, it can also de-stress us.

    And that's good because stress can cause the brain to overload with chemicals that could lead to high blood pressure, even a stroke or heart attack. Miller says, "You can easily counteract a stressful response with laughter."

    Best ways to get a good chuckle? Doctors recommend spending time with friends or enjoying a funny book or a comedy on TV or at the movies and try to see the humor in life. Because Miller says, "Laughter is by far among the best medicines, that we can take."

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