What does “laughter is the best medicine” mean?

Learn the origins and meaning of the proverb. Discover how laughter improves health, reduces stress, and find humor in everyday situations.

Understanding the Proverb

Laughter is the best medicine is a well-known proverb that means laughter has a positive impact on one’s physical and emotional health.

This proverb is often used to encourage people to find humor in difficult situations and to prioritize their mental and emotional well-being.

Origins and Meaning

The origins of the proverb are unclear, but it is believed to have been popularized in the 20th century.

The Bible also references the healing power of laughter in Proverbs 17:22, “A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.” This verse is often cited as the origin of the proverb.

The meaning of the proverb is straightforward – laughter has a positive impact on one’s health.

Laughing can boost the immune system, reduce stress, and improve one’s mood.

It is a reminder to not take life too seriously and to find humor in everyday situations.

How are the meanings of “laughter is the best medicine” and “bitter end” related?

The “laughter is the best medicine” idiom conveys the idea that laughter can have a healing effect on the body and mind.

On the other hand, the meaning of “bitter end” suggests a negative or unpleasant conclusion to a situation.

Both expressions highlight the impact of emotions on our well-being.

Laughter in Language and Culture

Laughter is a universal language that transcends cultural barriers.

Many cultures have their own proverbs and idioms that reference the healing power of laughter.

In Japan, there is a popular saying, “笑う門には福来る” (Warau kado ni wa fuku kitaru), which means “good fortune comes to those who smile.” In India, laughter yoga has become a popular practice that combines laughter exercises with yogic breathing techniques.

Overall, the proverb “laughter is the best medicine” encourages people to prioritize their mental and emotional well-being by finding humor in everyday situations.

It is a reminder that laughter is a powerful tool for healing and improving one’s overall health.


  • Proverb: a short, well-known saying that expresses a common truth or belief.
  • Idiom: a group of words whose meaning is not predictable from the literal meaning of its parts.
  • Adage: a traditional saying expressing a common experience or observation.

Example Sentences

  • Whenever he’s feeling down, he watches a comedy show because he knows that laughter is the best medicine.
  • She always tells her friends that laughter is the best medicine when they’re feeling stressed out.
  • After a long day at work, he likes to unwind by spending time with his friends and having a good laugh because he knows that laughter is the best medicine.


  • Humor is the best medicine
  • A smile is the best medicine
  • Laughter is the cure-all