You Know You¡¯re Drinking Too Much Coffee
You answer the door before people knock.
Juan Valdez named his donkey after you.
You ski uphill.
You speed walk in your sleep.
You haven¡¯t blinked since the last lunar eclipse.
You grind your coffee beans in your mouth.
You sleep with your eyes open.
You have to watch videos in fast-forward.
You can take a picture of yourself from ten feet
away without using the timer.
You lick your coffeepot clean.
You¡¯re the employee of the month at the local
coffeehouse and you don¡¯t even work there.
You chew on other people¡¯s fingernails.
The nurse needs a scientific calculator to take
Your T-shirt says, ¡°Decaffeinated coffee is the
All your kids are named ¡°Joe¡±.
You don¡¯t sweat, you percolate.
You buy 1/2 & 1/2 by the barrel.
You¡¯ve worn out the handle on your favorite mug.
You go to AA meetings just for the free coffee.
You walk twenty miles on your treadmill before
you realize it¡¯s not plugged in.
You¡¯ve built a miniature city out of little plastic
People get dizzy just watching you.
Starbucks owns the mortgage on your house.
Instant coffee takes too long.
You channel surf faster without a remote.
Someone says, ¡°How are you?¡± and you say,
¡°Good to the last drop.¡±
You name your cats ¡°Cream¡± and ¡°Sugar.¡±
Your Thermos is on wheels.
You short out motion detectors.
Your nervous twitch registers on the Richter
Charles Manson thinks you need to calm down.
Your birthday is a national holiday in Brazil.
You help your dog chase its tail.
Laughter is the Best Medicine
How delightful to learn that
laughter really is the best medi-
cine and will perhaps add as
many good years to your life as
other familiar health tips.
Could it be so simple that a
positive attitude reduces heart
disease and stress-related hor-
mones, improves the immune
system and leads to a longer life?
The scripture teaches that ¡°A
joyful heart is good medicine,
but a crushed spirit dries up the
bones¡± (proverbs 17:22), and it
Pg 6 - The Sunshine Express
Health & Nurturing
turns out science is supporting this notion.
Happy people tend to live longer and experience
better health than their unhappy peers accord-
ing to a review of more than 160 studies of hu-
man and animal studies.
The lead author, University of Illinois professor
emeritus of psychology Ed Diener, summarized
¡°the general conclusion from each type of study
is that your subjective well-being, that is, feel-
ing positive about your life, not stressed out,
not depressed, contributes to both longevity
and better health among healthy populations.¡±
The cardiovascular system is our ¡°Achilles heel¡±
when it comes to health and the leading cause
of death is heart disease.
Studies of artery health focus on how well the
cells that line the arteries function - like the
¡°canary in a coalmine¡± they are the sentinels of
health and disease in the system. These cells
are called endothelial cells and they control
blood pressure and keep cholesterol from oxi-
dizing and making plaque.
Many cardiac studies look at endothelial func-
tion as the marker for arterial health.
Japanese research printed in the American Jour-
nal of Cardiology shows the effect of mirthful
laughter increases beneficial endothelial func-
tion. Participants watching a comedy had posi-
tive markers of endothelial health while those
watching a documentary had a decline in artery
A study from the Journal of Biobehavioral Medi-
cine called ¡°The Divergent effects of joyful and
anxiety-provoking music on endothelial vasore-
activity¡± showed that listening to joyful music
was good for artery health while anxiety-induc-
ing music was bad for the arteries.
Self-selected joyful music was associated with
increased endothelial function to a magnitude
previously observed with aerobic activity or
statin drug therapy!
Their conclusion was that listening to joyful mu-
sic may be an adjunctive life-style intervention
for the promotion of vascular health.
An interesting study titled ¡°Effects of laughing
and weeping on mood and heart rate variability¡±
points out that laughing has strong but tran-
sient effects on the autonomic nervous system,
while weeping or feeling sad has moderate but
sustained effects on it. It would seem that hav-
ing a ¡°heavy heart¡± really does have physiologi-
been shown to
benefit the im-
ural killer cells
that help fight
the stress hor-
and the inflam-
helps keep us
Patients with cancer and other terminal illnesses
benefit by laughter and show improved outlook,
less pain and longer survival.
A study looking at the effect of humor on well be-
ing of nursing home residents showed that upon
completion of a humor therapy program, there
were significant decreases in pain and perception
of loneliness, and significant increases in hap-
piness and life satisfaction for the experimental
group, but not for the control group.
The use of humor therapy appears to be an ef-
fective non-pharmacological intervention. The
authors suggest that nurses and other healthcare
professionals could incorporate humor in caring
for their patients.
As science continues to tease out the exact
mechanisms of how laughter improves health
we can rest assured that it works. In the bleak-
est of times, with both psychological and physi-
cal stress, good humor and positive attitude are
potent tools to help us along.
While happiness might not by itself prevent or
cure disease, the evidence that positive emotions
and enjoyment of life contribute to better health
and a longer lifespan is stronger than the data
linking obesity to reduced longevity.
Eat right, exercise, maintain a healthy weight,
and don¡¯t smoke, but most importantly, remem-
ber that attitude determines thought, thought
determines action, and apparently thought deter-
Good humor is good medicine. So dance like no
one is watching, sing like you are the star, whistle
while you work, and laugh until your eyes water,
your belly shakes and you gasp for air!
(Scott Rollins, MD, is Board Certified with the
American Board of Family Practice and the
American Board of Anti-Aging and Regenerative
Medicine. He specializes in Bioidentical Hormone
Replacement for men and women, thyroid and
adrenal disorders, fibromyalgia, weight loss and
other complex medical conditions. He is founder
and medical director of the Integrative Medicine
Center of Western Colorado (www.imcwc.com)
and Bellezza Laser Aesthetics (www.bellezzalaser.
com). Call 970.245.6911 for an appointment or
by Scott Rollins, M.D.
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