The Science of Smiles

Colin Patrick

As if the fact that it’s Friday isn’t enough to make you smile, you now have some hard data proving you should show off those pearly whites.

In this quick TED video, Ron Gutman details how old baseball cards and school yearbooks (including one containing a 1970’s-clad President Obama) can predict a person’s longevity based on the smile on their face. He explores the difference between a real smile and a fake one, and offers this fascinating finding:

Smiling rewards our brain reward mechanism in a way that even chocolate – a well regarded pleasure inducer – cannot match. British researchers found that one smile can generate the same level of brain stimulation as up to 2,000 bars of chocolate.