Ok so you’ve heard the expression fake it until you make it, right? Well ok, while I’m not really advocating that you pretend to be happy, I will say that smiling has some incredible health benefits. Science shows it can actually improve your mood. So I mean, who wouldn’t want to try something as easy as smiling to feel amazing?!
Believe it or not, people actually study what smiling does to us. Get this, smiling stimulates our brain’s reward system just like chocolate or foods we love. What?! I can just smile instead of eat a sweet a treat, well that’s amazing! Oh wait, not only does it produce the same feel-good chemicals as food, it produces the same happy-hormones as exercise. Okay, so if you’re not convinced already. . . Here’s the complete list why:
1. Smiling stimulates our brain’s reward system like chocolate by producing serotonin and dopamine!
2. Smiling produces the same feel-good endorphins as exercise.
3. Smiling reduces stress much the same way getting a good night’s sleep does.
4. Smiling reduces the feeling of pain and reduces your heart rate and blood pressure.
5. Smiling can boost other people’s moods. Your smile has the power to turn someone’s day around!
Okay, smiling yet? Now there is something you should know . . . . the type of smile matters. . . You have to be flashing your pearly whites to get the full effect! Wonder why? Well, the muscles around your eye sockets have to be activated to harness the maximum benefits. So that half smile won’t cut it.
Okay one more fun fact…. Women who displayed those big smiles we are talking about in their college yearbook were more likely to have better well-being and marital satisfaction 30 years later. . . so get on it!! ;)