Sonia Slankard started a Laughter Club after being diagnosed with Cushing's syndrome, a disease caused by too much of the hormone cortisol.

She said, "I realized I was having a really difficult time losing weight."

After the diagnosis, Sonia started giggling her way to better health.

Sonia said, "I started to do my own research, like what can we do to reduce cortisol, and overall my research just said laughter."

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Sonia is so serious about laughter, she just started a Laughter Club at Thomas Dunn Learning Center in the Dutchtown South neighborhood, but it's not to be confused with a comedy club.

"I'm terrible at jokes, I don't land them right," she said.

Btu she has a long list of other ways to get people laughing by making funny noises and facial expressions. Laughing has both physical and emotional benefits, according to Sonia.

She said, "Joyful energy just channels through your body."

The Laughter Club meets Tuesdays from 6-7 PM at 3113 Gasconade Street in St. Louis.