Smile your way to health

Smiling makes you look good and feel even better, while enhancing your body's wellbeing

woman smiling in natureSmiling is a great way to improve our physical and mental health, beauty and interpersonal relationships. But before we proceed, close your eyes for a few seconds, slowly take a deep breath, smile and exhale slowly while opening your eyes. The calmness that you have just experienced is the gist of what lies ahead.

Smile for your body

Relaxes the body


When we are stressed, our system releases adrenaline into our body. The extra rush of this stress-hormone shoots up our blood pressure, blood-sugar level and heart-beats; increases sweating; tenses the body and prepares it to handle stress. Repeated or continuous adrenaline rush in our blood can result in diabetes, cardiac problems, blood pressure, appetite disturbances and many other complications.

When we smile, it tells the body that everything is okay and to turn off the pumping of adrenaline into the body, immediately. It releases endorphins, natural pain killers and serotonin, thus lowering the blood-pressure and relaxing the body, instantly.

Boosts immunity

Smiling helps the immune system to work better, possibly because we are more relaxed while smiling. Smiling helps us to get over negative thoughts for the moment and makes us more optimistic in the long-run.

People who are optimistic [and these are the people who are out there smiling!] have stronger immune systems and are actually able to fight off illness better than those who frown more than they smile.

Smile for your looks

Not just the general physiology, but a smile can also influence the way we look. The muscles we use to smile, lift the face, and make us appear younger. People seldom notice old clothes if you wear a big smile. So forget that branded shirt for a change, forget that expensive face-lift and wear a smile as many times you remember, and you will look and feel a lot younger and more beautiful.

Smile for your mind

A smile is said to be a curve that sets everything straight. It creates a positive mind, increases the ability to solve problems and lessens the effects of negative information that we are constantly bombarded with. So, smiling will not lessen our problems, but will surely reduce the stress of those problems and how we respond to them.

Try a simple experiment. Think about someone close with a frown. Note the thoughts. They are usually on the negative side. Now think about the same person, but this time with a smile. You will realise that you actually get positive thoughts.

Psychology research shows that our facial expressions reflect and shape our inner feelings. In other words, when we smile we cannot feel angry or sad at the same moment. It appears to be physiologically impossible.

Try this test: Smile. Now try to think of something negative without losing the smile. It’s hard. When we smile our body is sending the rest of us a message that, “Life is good!”

Smiling can trick the body into helping you change your mood. Stay away from depression, stress and worry by smiling. Next time you are feeling down, try putting on a smile. There’s a good chance your mood will change for the better. The stress should be reduced and you’ll be better able to solve your problem.

Did you know that a smile gives the same level of stimulation as eating 2,000 chocolate bars? So you can actually enjoy 2,000 bars of chocolate without worrying about calories or cavities. Now, that’s too good a reason to keep up that smile and forget that frown forever.

Smile for others

Have you ever noticed how easily puppies make human friends? Yet all they do is wag their tails and fall over. We are drawn to people who smile and show that they are happy. There is an attraction factor. Everyone smiles in the same language. We want to know a smiling person and figure out what is so good.

People who smile bring happiness with them. They lighten up the room, change the moods of others, and make things happier. Frowns and scowls push people away—but a smile draws them in. It lifts the moods of those around you causing people to treat you with joy and happiness.When others look at you and you have a smile, you make their day and when they smile back, they make yours. So remember to smile to your dad, mom, children, friends, maid. everyone!Discard that stiffness off your face while you are walking down the street. Today, give a stranger one of your smiles. It might be the only sunshine he sees all day.

Smile please

Having a smile on our face is easy but most people seem to be unable to do that easily. Stress has become part and parcel of our life and our faces have been ‘dragged’ down by it. When we ‘have to’ smile, we give a fake smile.

First, we must unlearn the forced and fake way of smiling and learn to give a genuine, inner smile. We just need to constantly remind ourselves to ‘smile’. I suggest the first thing to do when you wake up in the morning is to smile to yourself and say, “I want to have a good day today!”Most of us know how laughter benefits us. But not many are aware of the benefits we can get from smiling. It’s not possible for us to laugh, but it is definitely possible to smile anywhere or anytime.A smile can improve your health and confidence, help you make friends and succeed in your career. So are you smiling right now?

Aanchal Agrawal
Aanchal Agrawal is a mother, a psychotherapist, and a special educator. She is a gold medallist in psychology from Benaras Hindu University. She is interested in removing taboos regarding mental illness and aims to spread awareness about child development.


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