The health benefits, both mental and physical, of humor are well documented. A good laugh can diffuse tension, relieve stress, and release endorphins into your system, which act as a natural mood elevator. In Norman Cousin’s book, Anatomy of an Illness, Cousin’s describes the regimen he followed to overcome a serious debilitating disease he was suffering from. It included large doses of laughter and humor. Published in 1976, his book has been widely accepted by the medical community.