Since we’re entering cold and flu season while also (still) trying to fend off COVID-19, we could all use some tips for boosting our immune system. We probably all know the standards—eating well, getting enough sleep, exercising—but did you know that joy can also give your immune system a kick?
According to the Mayo Clinic, laughter can release neuropeptides that can help prevent illness from becoming more serious and help fight stress that can weaken your immune system. A 2003 study found that people with more positive emotional states were less likely to develop a common cold, a 2015 study found that laugh therapy helped boost the immune response in women who had just given birth and multiple other studies have come to similar conclusions.
According to ENT-otolaryngologist Dr. Murray Grossan, even a simple smile can offer immunity benefits. “What’s crazy is that just the physical act of smiling can make a difference in building your immunity,” Dr. Grossan told NBC News. “When you smile, the brain sees the muscle [activity] and assumes that humor is happening.”
So consider this list a weekly dose of emotional inoculation. Can’t guarantee it’ll keep you from catching anything, but it certainly isn’t gonna hurt ya!
Swan couple engaging in a graceful courtship dance is just mesmerizing.
u201cDancing swans.. ud83eudda2nnSound onu201d
— Buitengebieden (@Buitengebieden)
Kiddo getting woken by a new puppy surprise is the stuff core memories are made of.
Love how it took him a few seconds to enter his body and see what was happening. Then a hug before anything else. So sweet.
Cuddly cat appears to comfort human who is crying.
u201cPlease donu2019t cry.. ud83eudd7au201d
— Buitengebieden (@Buitengebieden)
“Hey, hooman. You okay? Let me smoosh my face on you to make you feel better.”
Dad sings Persian song for baby who blissfully rests on his guitar.
Gracious. What a lovely voice, beautiful song and adorable baby.
Doggo greets his bestest boy with the bestest hug.
u201cThe most beautiful encounter u2764u201d
— Tansu YEu011eEN (@Tansu YEu011eEN)
I’d like to put in a request for this kind of greeting every time I come home, please.
Kid meets his baby brother for the first time and makes everyone’s eyes all sweaty.
#fyp #viral #heartwarming #siblings #brothers #babiesoftiktok
Good tears, but phew! I was not ready. Read the full story and see the Part Two video here.
This baby girl’s “Hi, baby girrrl” is almost too much cuteness to handle.
Hi mommy! 👋🏽😁 #babygirl #babyfever #babiesoftiktok #beautifulpeople #love #god
She’s so darn proud of herself. As she should be.
Selma Blair, who was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis four years ago, lit up “Dancing With the Stars.”
It hasn’t been an easy road for Blair, and she was afraid she would lose her balance during the performance, but she wanted to show that people with disabilities can find joy in unexpected ways. Mission accomplished. Read the full story here.
Wee one takes his first steps and decides dancing is more important.
That shoulder shrug, though. May we all walk through life with such sweetness and swagger!
Finally, a little Paul Rudd “September” dance montage to carry you through the weekend.
u201cfor all who celebrate this special dayu201d
— Bradford Pearson (@Bradford Pearson)
If Paul Rudd being Paul Rudd doesn’t make you smile, I’m not sure I can help you.
Hope that made your week a whole lot brighter! If you enjoy these posts and want to have them delivered straight to you each week, subscribe to our free newsletter, The Upworthiest, here.