by Petar Petrov, Staff Writer for Terpenes and Testing Magazine
“Laughter is the best medicine” – we’ve all heard that. What we might have not have heard, however, is that laughter isn’t just medicine for the mind. It’s also medicine for the body.
Laughter, along with the deeply spiritual comfort, the reflective state of mind, and the conviviality which cannabis brings make the flower a powerful ally in one’s quest for holistic health. The medicinal properties of cannabis span beyond the physiological benefits of CBD and the psychological ones of THC into a healing synergy between the mind and body.
Laughter’s physiological benefits
A piling body of research has discovered various aspects of laughter’s tangible healing effects on the body.
Jacqueline Domhoff from Peru managed to shrink her 20 cm ovarian tumor in 6 months largely through daily laughter exercises.
Laughter also increases the flow in the lymphatic system, and with it, it’s also thought to help increase our immunity, especially to cancer. It also improves the function of blood vessels, helping them relax and expand, and supply the heart and the brain with a steady flow of oxygen.
Michael Miller, M.D., of the University of Maryland, has reported on a study which found that laughter can have equally positive effects on the arteries as aerobic activity because it helps the endothelium regulate blood flow.
"The endothelium is the first line in the development of atherosclerosis, or hardening of the arteries," Dr. Miller says. "So given the results of our study, it is conceivable that laughing may be important to maintain a healthy endothelium. And reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease."
Norman Cousins, M.D., a researcher of the mind’s role in the fight against disease (especially cancer), speaks in his book Head First: Biology of Hope about his amazing recovery from cancer. He explains how 10 minutes of laughter had an anesthetic effect that helped him sleep for a couple of hours pain-free, and ultimately played a central role in his recovery.
Laughter’s psychological benefits
Laughing in the face of danger is one attribute that separates winners from losers. A humoristic and light-hearted approach to fighting a disease as scary as cancer has been found to not only influence the outcome, but the process as well. No matter how much time patients spend with their loved ones, they will have to spend significant amounts of time alone with their disease, and cannabis can make this company much more pleasant.
Cannabis’s effects for patients can be somewhat similar to watching a masterpiece dark comedy/dramedy. Cannabis doesn’t simply give a temporary escape in the form of mad giggles like normal comedies. It also induces a reflective state of mind which can help patients re-evaluate their situation altogether by giving them a new perspective and some distance from the disease.
Consuming cannabis can get patients elevated enough to reach an aerial view from which cancer doesn’t seem as big compared to the grand scheme.
Cannabis, Laughter, and Conviviality
Anyone who’s been seriously ill or has had a loved one in a similar position knows the awkwardness that looms in the air even amidst the closest family and friends.
Similar to a dinner invitation, cannabis can be the perfect pretext for a visit, not the entire reason. It loosens the tension and helps break down barriers for both the ill and the loved ones, be it through laughter or simply a mood lightener.
Cannabis, with all the laughter and the interconnected galaxies of thoughts it brings, can open a new dimension, where even the deadliest disease seems a little less scary. Even better, this dimension can give birth to a domino effect of psychological and physiological benefits which can not only make a monster seem smaller, but help patients defeat it altogether.
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