Studies Show Smiling Improves Health and Relationships

Smile a Day Keeps the Stresses Away

Smiling can have a huge influence on your health and can positively benefit one’s life. Researchers have found that a, “genuine smile,” can lead to positive health consequences.

Psychologist, Paul Ekam did a study that was published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, by observing participants reactions to films and what they were feeling during the films. He found that those who had experienced an, “genuine smile” during the films were feeling amusement, relief, contentment, satisfaction, ultimately achieving a sensory pleasure while watching the films.

Ekman found in this study that when one smiles there is more activity in the left side of the brain, which is often associated with positive emotions.

Below are four ways smiling could improve your health.

Positive Attitude

Researchers have found that those who typically smile in photos end up feeling more satisfaction. When one is more positive than they are able to take advantage of more opportunities, social relationships, and may have a more positive outlook.


In another study researchers studied the photos of baseball players in 1952 and compared smiles with the age of the players at death. They found that those players with more “genuine smiles,” were more likely to live longer.


In a third study researcher put students in a stressful task while holding chopsticks in their mouth. Smiling participants had a lower heartrate compared to when they had a neutral look. Smiling releases endorphins in the body which lower the heart rate and blood pressure.

Mood Enhancer

It has been discovered that smiling releases natural chemical serotonin which works to help improve one’s mood. Even just by moving the muscles in your face can improve one’s mood.

It’s funny how just a simple smile can impact your health. Not only can it impact your health, but it can also help you improve relationships. The more you smile then the more approachable you are to others.

I did an experiment once, where I made it a goal at every YSA dance that I would smile if I made eye contact with every gentleman I saw in the room that night. As I did this I discovered that the more I smiled the more likely I was to get asked to dance. I noticed that whenever I smiled at someone it made myself more approachable.

Overall, the more one smiles the more positive they will feel, ultimately improving their life, health, and relationships.



Makayla Stoker

Makayla Stoker


Makayla Stoker is a student studying Communications at Brigham Young University-Idaho.