Dr. Janet Kinney, Licensed Psychologist

"The chemicals that are running our body and our brain are the same chemicals that are involved in emotion.  And that says to me that .... we'd better pay more attention to emotions with respect to health."  Candace Pert - The Molecules of Emotion



  • A Sense of Humor is one of the most powerful tools you can have to make certain that your daily mood and emotional state support good health.
  • Laughter stimulates the immune system, off-setting the immunosuppressive effects of stress.
  • Bill Cosby is fond of saying, "If you can laugh at it, you can survive it"
  • A belly laugh is really good for you.  It relieves muscular tension, improves breathing and regulates the heart beat.
  • Daily mood or frame of mind makes significant contributions to health - especially when it persists day after day, year after year.
  • Sustaining a positive attitude in dealing with daily hassles and problems contributes to physical health at the same time it helps cope with stress.
  • Deliberately be on the lookout for more of the absurd, ludicrous and ridiculous events that go on all the time.  Point them out to others.
  • Keep a note of the funniest things you see or hear.
  • Not funny?  Try laughing any way.  The shift in facial muscles may trigger some of the benefits of genuine laughter.
  • Surround yourself with more of what amuses you.
  • One study even showed that people using a biofeedback apparatus were able to relax muscles more quickly after watching funny cartoons than after looking at beautiful scenery.  


"The art of medicine consists of keeping the patient amused while nature heals the disease." Voltaire

Did you know.....

  • The average child laughs an average of 150 times a day.
  • The average adult laughs an average of 15 times a day.
  • Even exposure to laughter has been shown to reduce stress hormones.


  • Causes the brain to release endorphins - opium-like substance that ease pain and produce a sense of comfort and euphoria.
  • During vigorous activity, nerve cells in the brain secrete other neurotransmitters, such as serotonin, dopamine and norepinephrine, which improve general feeling.
  • Deficiencies of these hormones have been linked to symptoms of depression, anxiety, impulsivity, aggression and increased appetite.
  • Regular exercise reduces the amount of adrenal hormones your body releases in response to stress.
  • Physical exercise uses up excess adrenaline.
  • Exercise provides an outlet for negative emotions such as frustration, anger and irritability, thereby promoting a more positive mood and outlook.
  • There is good evidence the physically fit people have less extreme physiological responses when under pressure than those who are not.
  • Working out improves the ability to relax or sleep. promotes self-esteem, enhances energy, concentration and even memory.
  • Fit people are better able to handle the long-term effects of stress without suffering ill health or burnout. 

"The exciting part to physical activity has been the fact that we always thought about exercise from a physical standpoint, such as energy metabolism, but it's equally, if not just as important, to understand from a mental standpoint, as well as it helps in self-efficacy and self-esteem."  Miriam Nelson, associate professor of nutrition and director of the Center for Physical Fitness.