Last updated on August 16th, 2012 at 12:05 pm
Laughter is said to be the best medicine and April 2 was Iowa’s first-ever L-O-L Day, or Laugh Out Loud Day.
It was part of Iowa’s effort to become the healthiest state in the nation, reports Radio Iowa.
Iowans were encouraged to forward a joke, tell a funny story, even to bring a whoopie cushion to work.
Helen Eddy, executive director of the Healthiest State Initiative and assistant VP of health and wellness at Hy-Vee, encouraged employees at the corporate office “to wear clown noses, wear silly clothes, tell a funny joke, all of the above,” she said.
While the overall campaign is focused on the physical health of Iowans, Eddy said L-O-L Day zeroes in on emotional health.
“We’re using the Laugh Out Loud Day as a way to bring attention to stress and to talk to Iowans about ways to improve their emotional health and reduce the stress in their lives,” Eddy says. “With the way the economy has been the last few years, that is one of the areas that Iowans can always use some help with.”
Laughing can provide a world of benefits to the human body, Radio Iowa reports.
“Laughing engages nearly every muscle in the body, it expands the lungs, stimulates the brain,” Eddy says. “Laughter reduces pain, lowers your blood pressure, helps you sleep. Laughter is contagious. It’s hard to keep a straight face when somebody is smiling or laughing at you and with you.”