Why laughter is the best medicine упражнение 11



Why laughter is the best medicine.

Our unserious side is being taken seriously by doctors.

Laughing helps you fight illness – and gets you fit.

But how it works is still being puzzled out.

A group of adults are lying in a circle on the floor listening to a recording of ”The Laughing Policeman”. At first everyone feels ridiculous and there’s only the odd nervous giggle, but suddenly the laughter becomes real. It quickly spreads around the room until everyone is infected by it.

Doctors are starting to believe that laughter not only improves your state of mind, but actually affects your entire physical well-being. The people lying in a circle are attending a workshop to learn the forgotten art of laughter. This is laughter therapy in action.

Britain’s first laughter therapist, Robert Holden says: ‘Instinctively we know that laughing helps us feel healthy and alive. Each time we laugh we feel better and more content.’

But we could be losing our ability to laugh. A French newspaper found that in 1930 the French laughed on average for nineteen minutes per day. By 1980 this had fallen to six minutes. Eighty per cent of the people questioned said that they would like to laugh more. Other research suggests that children laugh on average about 400 times a day, but by the time they reach adulthood this has been reduced to about fifteen times. Somewhere in the process of growing up we lose an astonishing 385 laughs a day.

William Fry – a psyciatrist from California – studied the effects of laughter on the body. He got patience to watch Laurel and Hardy films, and monitored their blood pressure, heart rate and muscle tone. He found that laughter has a similar effect to physical exercise. It speeds up the heart rate, increases blood pressure and quickens breathing. It also makes our facial and stomach muscles work. Fry thinks laughter is a type of jogging on the spot. Laughter can even provide a kind of pain and relief. Fry has proved that laughter produces endorphins – chemicals in the body that relieve pain.

Researcheres from Texas tested this. They divided forty university students into four groups. The first group listened to a funny cassette for twenty minutes, the second listened to a cassette intended to relax them, the third heard an informative tape, while the fourth group listened to no tape at all.

Researcheres found that if they produced pain in the students, those who had listened to the humorous tape could tolerate the discomfort for much longer.

Patch Adams is both a doctor and a performing clown in Virginia, America. He is convinced that humour should be a part of every medical consultation. ‘There’s evidence to suggest that laughter stimulates the immune system, ’says Adams, ‘yet hospitals and clinics are well-known for their depressing atmospheres.’ Adams practises what he preaches. He wears his waist-length hair in a ponytail and also has a handlebar moustache. He usually puts on a red nose when seeing patients.

Long life

Scientists are finally beginning to unlock the secret everyone has dying to know: just how long can we live? They confidently predict that in the 21 st century people will be living to the incredible age of 130. And this is just the start.

Experts studying the process of ageing believe it is possible that people will live long enough to have great-great-great-grandchildren. This belief is based on research and on fact that more and more people are living to be 100 as our general health improves. There are around 4000 people over the age of 100 in Britain – ten times more than 30 years ago.

Dr. Vijg, a Dutch biologist, is the head of a project studying the growing number of old people in the population. He and his team are focusing their attention on human genes, which they think may hold the key to what kills us, early or late in life.

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A century ago average life expectancy in Europe was 45. Today, providing we look after ourselves, drive our cars carefully, and cut down on things like butter, alcohol and cigarettes, we can add nearly 30 years to that figure. Within the next ten years, we may all have added a couple more years on top of that.

But that is nothing, compared to what will happen once scientists have discovered our genetic secrets.

Some of the problem genes, like those that cause haemorphilia, have already been tracked down. Dr. Vijg says: ’Nobody dies from old age – just diseases that affect people as they get older.’ And he forecasts that within 30 years, science will be preparing people for a long life.’ Already the killer diseases are being eradicated,’ he says. ‘About 50% of cancers are curable, and i really believe that this will increase to 80%.’

Doctors also believe that the death rate from the biggest killers – diseases of the circulatory system will decline as man comes to his senses by giving up smoking and eating more healthily. Dr. Vijg points to experiments with animals in laboratories. ‘Those given less food, but of a higher quality, lived to the human equivalent of 150 years’.

Dr. Vijg believes that as life span increases, so will other expectations. Women will be having babies at an older age. ‘Already, more and more are having their first child when they are over 30,’he says. ‘In other ten years people might think it normal for a woman of 50 to be having her first child.’

What about living forever? Will eternal life ever become reality? ‘So far, that is science fiction,’ says Dr. Vijg. ‘Theoretically it is possible, but it will be another hundred, perhaps two hundred years before we know all secrets of our genes.’

Are you on top of the world?

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Text 8. Why laughter is the best medicine?

8.1.Read the article below. The following sentences have been removed from the article. Decide in which numbered gap each one should go. (There is one extra sentence which you do not need to use.)

A) Somewhere in the process of growing up we lose an astonishing 385 laughs a day.

В) It also makes our facial and stomach muscles work.

С) He is convinced that humour should be a part of every medical consultation.

D) Some have even been referred by their family doctors.

E) They divided forty university students into four groups.

F) This will also help improve your personal relationships.

G) But we could be losing our ability to laugh.

H) This is laughter therapy in action.

8.2. Our unserious side is being taken seriously by doctors. Laughing helps you fight illness – and gets you fit. But how it works is still being puzzled out.

A group of adults are lying in a circle on the floor listening to a recording of ‘The Laughing Policeman’. At first everyone feels ridiculous and there’s only the odd nervous giggle, but suddenly the laughter becomes real. It quickly spreads around the room until everyone is infected by it. (1 _______)

Doctors are starting to believe that laughter not only improves your state of mind, but actually affects your entire physical well-being. The people lying in a circle are attending a workshop to learn the forgotten art of laughter. (2 ________)

Britain’s first laughter therapist, Robert Holden says: ‘Instinctively we know that laughing helps us feel healthy and alive. Each time we laugh we feel better and more content.’

(3 _______) A French newspaper found that in 1930 the French laughed on average for nineteen minutes per day. By 1980 this had fallen to six minutes. Eighty per cent of the people questioned said that they would like to laugh more. Other research suggests that children laugh on average about 400 times a day, but by the time they reach adulthood this has been reduced to about fifteen times. (4 _______)

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William Fry – a psychiatrist from California – studied the effects of laughter on the body. He got patients to watch Laurel and Hardy films, and monitored their blood pressure, heart rate and muscle tone. He found that laughter has a similar effect to physical exercise. It speeds up the heart rate, increases blood pressure and quickens breathing. (5____)

Fry thinks laughter is a type of jogging on the spot.

Laughter can even provide a kind of pain relief. Fry has proved that laughter produces endorphins – chemicals in the body that relieve pain.

Researchers from Texas tested this.(6______) The first group listened to a funny cassette for twenty minutes, the second listened to a cassette intended to relax them, the third heard an informative tape, while the fourth group listened to no tape at all.

Researchers found that if they produced pain in the students, those who had listened to the humorous tape could tolerate the discomfort for much longer.

Patch Adams is both a doctor and a performing clown in Virginia, America. (7______) ‘There’s evidence to suggest that laughter stimulates the immune system,’ says Adams, ‘yet hospitals and clinics are well-known for their depressing atmospheres.’ Adams practises what he preaches. He wears his waist-length hair in a ponytail and also has a handlebar moustache. He usually puts on a red nose when seeing patients.

8.3.Answer the questions.

1. Do doctors now understand exactly how laughter helps?

2. Do people generally laugh more or less than before? How can you explain that?

3. Is there any real evidence to suggest laughter helps?

Match the words from the text with their definitions.

1) to giggle a) to reduce pain or some other unpleasant feeling
2) to monitor b) funny, amusing
3) to relieve c) what body uses to defend itself against things that cause disease
4) research d) the treatment of illnesses without drugs or operations
5) humorous e) to watch, listen to or examine what is happening
6) to stimulate f) to make something more active
7) immune system g) to laugh in a silly, childish way
8) therapy h) detailed study of a subject

Text 9.Read the text and fill in the gaps with an appropriate word. You have been given the number of missing letters.

A doctor taking over a local practice visited a 74-year-old woman (1) — had been bedridden for 40 years. He wasn’t (2) —- to find anything wrong with her. He discovered that the doctor before him (3) — ordered the woman to bed because she had influenza and had told (4) — not to get up again until he returned. Unfortunately, he had forgotten (5) — return.

Within a (6) — days, the 34-year-old single woman had recovered. But she remained in her sickroom waiting for (7) — doctor’s visit. Several weeks went by and he still did not call. By then the patient had discovered that she enjoyed (8) —– looked after so much that she refused to move.

At first she (9) — nursed by her mother. But when the old woman died, a brother-in-law took over. Finally, a new doctor to the area paid a routine call to (10) — patient’s home in Taunton, Devon, and examined the woman, now (11) —- 74 and still determined to keep to her bed. It took seven months (12) — sympathetic encouragement before the old lady was persuaded (13) — leave her bed, but happily she was on her feet again (14) — three fairly active years before her death (15) — the age of 77.

Text 10. Addiction

10.1. What is being an addict? Have you had any addictions? What did you do to give them up?

10.2.Read the article about different typs of addicts. Which person do you think has the most serious problem? Why?

Are you hooked?

(1) No one likes to admit they’re an addict. They are sad creatures ruled by deadly substances such as tobacco or alcohol. But there are others less damaging to the health. Like it or not, large numbers of us are addicts. Addictions can be chemical (caffeine), emotional (shopping), physical (exercise) or downright strange – such as picking your spots! You’re the odd one out if you don’t have at least one everyday addiction. What do you do when you feel under pressure, bored or depressed? Get lost in the world of TV? Go shopping? Eat one bar of chocolate after another?

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(2) Becci has been a chocaholic for ten years. ‘I just get an urge for it – a need,’ says Becci. ‘I really don’t know why, it’s just so delicious. People say that chocolate can make up for lost passion – I don’t know about that, but I love the way it melts in my mouth.’ Every day, Becci gets through several bars of her favourite Cadbury’s chocolate (the one with the soft caramel centre is the best). But it’s not only the bars she goes for – hot chocolate drinks and chocolate cakes are also essentials. Towards exam time, Becci feels she has to increase her intake to cope with all the work. ‘If I get up late, I’ll have chocolate for breakfast, then more and more during the day. I am addicted. It’s like smoking, I suppose, but I have no plans to give it up. If I like it so much, why should I?’

(3) Addiction to exercise can ruin your life, Janine learnt to her cost. ‘I was swimming at least fifty lengths a day, jogging to the gym and doing three aerobic classes a week. At home, I used an exercise bike and keep-fit videos. My husband said that I didn’t have time for him, and he was right. But I couldn’t believe it when he left me. Finally, I came to my senses, I wanted to get fit but it all got out of hand and my addiction ruined my marriage. Now, I’m seeing a counsellor and gradually reducing the amount of exercise I do.’

(4) Well-known Member of Parliament, Tony Benn, just can’t live without his favourite drink. He has on average eighteen pints of tea a day and his addiction has raised concern about his health. When he collapsed recently, some people blamed his excessive tea drinking. Mr Benn has calculated that, over the years, he has drunk enough tea (around 300,000 gallons) to displace an ocean-going liner. If he ever tried to stop, he would find it agonising.

(5) Anne shopped for thirteen hours a day without leaving her living room – she was addicted to TV shopping. When she got home from her job as a nightcare worker at 8.30 a.m., Anne would immediately tune into a satellite TV shopping channel and buy everything in sight. Her home was soon an Aladdin’s cave of household goods and trendy clothes she didn’t need. When her cash ran out, she stole money from the elderly patients in her care and was charged with theft. ‘It seemed so easy,’ she says. ‘I didn’t realise I’d become so addicted.’ Anne’s family have now removed her satellite receiver.

10.3.Read the sentences and decide which person (Becci, Janine, Tony Ben or Anne) each one refers to. One of the sentences does not refer toany of them.

1. His/her addiction led to crime.

2. She/he was addicted to getting things she/he never used.

3. She/he needs it to help him/her work effectively under pressure.

4. She/he feels her addiction is a substitute for love.

5. She/he is receiving a professional treatment.

6. Her/his addiction may have had serious physical consequences.

7. She/he doesn’t think she/he should give it up.

10.4.Find words or phrases in the text with the following meanings.

1) the exception, the unusual person (para. 1)

2) a desire (para. 2)

3) to compensate (para. 2)

4) to change from solid to liquid (para. 2)

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