Happiness strengthens our arteries. When we fall in love it strengthens our neurons. Emotions are totally related and connected to our bodies.
“Only happiness is a guarantee of health and longevity.”
-Santiago Ramon y Cajal-
The power of emotions is incredible. Good emotions as well as bad ones directly affect the health and wellbeing of our bodies.
12 emotions that affect our body
1. Happiness strengthens our arteries. Cardiologist Dr. Michael Miller did a study testing this point through music. In the group that sat through a session of happy music, the arteries dilated up to 26%, something close to what happens in a session of aerobics, while sad music reduced the diameter of the arteries to 6%.
2. Love strengthens our neurons. Italian researchers found that when we are in love we produce a higher quantity of a protein that is involved in the growth and survival of some of our neurons. Therefore the best thing to do is…fall in love every once in a while!
3. Calmness protects our brain. A study carried out by the University of Montreal noted that a habitual practice of meditation caused the thickening of some of the regions of the cortex (gray matter); this thickening leads to decreased pain and cardiovascular accidents.
4. Anger slows healing. Researchers from Ohio (United States) have shown that anger increases the cytokines, which are responsible for inflammation.
5. Fear increases cardiovascular risk. Researchers from Quebec (Canada) have shown that a higher level of stress increases blood pressure and cortisol levels.
6. Love lowers cholesterol rates. An interesting study asked one group of volunteers to write a letter in which they talked about the love they felt for a loved one, and they asked the other group to write a letter about any topic. They measured the levels of cholesterol before and after the session and the group that had written a letter about love showed a decrease in cholesterol levels.
7. Anxiety weakens our immune system. It is proven that students during times of stress have a decreased level of T lymphocytes, the defense cells that are responsible for removing diseased cells and fighting viruses.
8. Pain inflames allergies. Although emotional anguish is not responsible for allergies, it helps trigger reactions and increase its virulence.
9. Crying is healthy. In the 1980s, researcher William Frey discovered that tears removed large doses of noradrenaline (responsible for releasing cortisol). Today we know that tears are loaded with lysozyme, responsible for destroying 95% of bacteria in only 10 minutes. They also eliminate stress hormones. But not all tears are alike. A study showed that people who have cried during a sad movie were loaded with stress related substances, whereas those who cried from an onion were not.
10. Stress in premenopausal women causes them to gain weight. Swedish researchers have shown that during menopause, there is an increase in stress hormones, which in turn generates an accumulation of fat around the belly and hips.
11. Humor repairs us. Good humor releases endorphins, the so-called happy hormones and the growth hormone responsible for their functions in repairing the body.
12. Pain increases when you are warned of it. It has been shown that the common phrase “this is going to hurt” increases the pain or at least that has been shown in a study by the Dutch Radboud University. The study gathered more than 100 volunteers. They were all exposed to the same substance, but to those that were warned that they would experience a strong itch, they did not strong scratching once the substance had been administered.