Crying makes you feel better

Good news for me, as I have cried me a lake full of tears over my miscarriage.

“Tear production may actually be a way to aid a person to deal with emotional problems. This finding lends some basis to the expression, ‘To cry it out helps a person feel better.’ Scientific studies have found that after crying, people actually do feel better, both physically and physiologically—and they feel worse by suppressing their tears.

At the St Paul Ramsey Medical Center in Minnesota, tears caused by simple irritants were compared to those brought on by emotion. Researcher William Frey found that stress-induced tears actually remove toxic ‘substances’ from the body. Volunteers were led to cry first from watching sad movies, and then from freshly cut onions. The researchers found that the tears from the movies, called emotional tears, contained far more toxic biological byproducts. Weeping, they concluded, is an excretory process which removes toxic substances that normally build up during emotional stress.

The simple act of crying also reduces the body’s manganese level, a mineral which affects mood and is found in up to 30 times greater concentration in tears than in blood serum. They also found that emotional tears contain 24 per cent higher albumin protein concentration than tears caused by eye irritants.

The researchers concluded that chemicals built up by the body during stress were removed by tears, which actually lowered stress. These include the endorphin leucine-enkephalin, which helps to control pain, and prolactin, a hormone which regulates milk production in mammals.

They found that one of the most important of those compounds which removed tears was adrenocorticotrophic hormone (ACTH), one of the best indicators of stress. Suppressing tears increases stress levels, and contributes to diseases aggravated by stress, such as high blood pressure, heart problems and peptic ulcers.”

Taken from The Miracle of Tears by Jerry Bergman


4 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. iamstacey
    Jun 23, 2009 @ 15:28:59

    Wow, who would’ve thought there was all that going on? There really is a reason to “have a good cry”!


  2. Kate
    Jun 25, 2009 @ 02:55:14

    I’m a bit advocate of crying it out if you have to. I had no idea how much it would help but it does.


  3. Trackback: Why crying is good for you « Diary of a Miracle

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