What's in a smile?
A lot of my clients, after care, ask me: “what can I do now to help support my care?”. Usually, I think people are expecting me to prescribe lots of exercises or movement – which I agree is incredibly important. But honestly, my main recommendation beyond anything else, is to smile.
This could come across as flippant or odd, but the chemical domino-effect associated with more smiling is immense; let me share just a few benefits with you:
· Probably the most acknowledged side effect of a genuine smile is stress reduction. The hormones and chemicals of stress can have many harmful effects on people’s health and are often the root cause of many symptoms, such as chronic pain, insomnia, gut health changes, libido loss, weight change, mood change etc.
· Potential immune system boosting, this is again mainly related to the lowering of stress hormones such as cortisol, which is an immune system suppressant. It stands to reason that when there is lowered stress hormones there will be greater function of the immune system, who doesn’t want that!
· You look great! I mean seriously, you look your best when you smile; that’s why we do it in pictures!
The nature of the recommendation is light-hearted, but the message is important, and I truly believe that if we can authentically smile just a little more, life can offer more peace, joy, and an elevated level of health. DO try this at home!