By Sarah A LoBisco, ND
Happy Thanksgiving everyone!
I am so grateful for all my clients, living wellies,
and so much more!
As promised, here is the continuation of the
focus on emotional well-being and health.
Enjoy these abstracts supporting why it’s
important to feed our mind with positive thoughts in order to nurture our
Painful memories of being teased at holiday
gatherings adding fire to your inflammatory body pain?
Maybe watch a funny movie to release
The abstract and article below explain why:
laughter forms an important part of human non-verbal communication, it has
received rather less attention than it deserves in both the experimental and
the observational literatures. Relaxed social (Duchenne) laughter is associated
with feelings of wellbeing and heightened affect, a proximate explanation for
which might be the release of endorphins. We tested this hypothesis in a series
of six experimental studies in both the laboratory (watching videos) and naturalistic
contexts (watching stage performances), using change in pain threshold as an
assay for endorphin release. The results show that pain thresholds are
significantly higher after laughter than in the control condition. This
pain-tolerance effect is due to laughter itself and not simply due to a change
in positive affect. We suggest that
laughter, through an endorphin-mediated opiate effect, may play a crucial role
in social bonding.
Dunbar, R. et al. Social laughter is
correlated with an elevated pain threshold. Proc. R. Soc. B (2012) 279,
1161-1167. September 14, 2011. doi:10.1098/rspb.2011.1373
Most of us
probably think of laughter, if we think of it at all, as a response to
something funny — as, in effect, an emotion.
is fundamentally a physical action. “Laughter involves the repeated, forceful
exhalation of breath from the lungs,” says Robin Dunbar, a professor of
evolutionary psychology at Oxford, who led the study. “The muscles of the
diaphragm have to work very hard.” We’ve all heard the phrase “laugh until it
hurts,” he points out. That pain isn’t metaphoric; prolonged laughing can be
painful and exhausting.
a difficult workout.
laughter elicit a physiological response similar to that of exercise and, if
so, what might that reveal about the nature of exertion?
exercised together, the rowers’ pain thresholds — and presumably their
endorphin levels — were significantly higher than they had been at the start,
but also higher than when they rowed alone.
know why synchrony has this effect, but it seems very strong,” Dr. Dunbar says.
So if you
typically run or bike alone, perhaps consider finding a partner. Your endorphin
response might rise and, at least theoretically, render that unpleasant final
hill a bit less daunting. Or if you prefer exercising alone, perhaps
occasionally entertain yourself with a good joke.
expect forced laughter to lend you an edge, Dr. Dunbar says. “Polite titters do
not involve the repeated, uninhibited series of exhalations” that are needed to
“drive the endorphin effect,” he says. With laughter, as with exercise, it
seems, there really is no gain without some element of pain.
G. Laughter as a Form of Exercise. NY Times. October 24, 2012.
So, it’s true. The more fun you have and the
more you like yourself, the less likely you are to be challenged with weight
issues from emotional triggers.
However, remember hormones, toxicants,
stress, and digestion also play a role in weight gain, yet they are all affected
by emotions as well!
Bottom line: emotions and biochemistry are intricately
linked. Jessica Ortner explains:
The problem with this is that these negative
emotions and beliefs about our bodies trigger hormones that prevent us from
losing weight and actually lead to additional weight gain, a problem that we’ll
get into further down the page…
Now don’t get me wrong, that fact that most
women have unrealistic beliefs and judgments about their bodies doesn’t mean
that we don’t actually have issues with weight in this United States and much
of the world…
At this time in our culture when we are the
toughest on ourselves about our weight, we also happen to have bigger issues
with weight than ever before…
Roughly 2/3 of women in the United States are
overweight, with 1/2 of those women being obese…
What’s especially surprising about those
numbers is that since 1960, the percentage of obese people has nearly tripled.
In 1960 the obesity rate was only 13.4%!
So the question is, with our weight loss
industry having topped $20 billion dollars in the United States (85% of which
is driven by women), why are we not getting thinner?
Sadly what most women are turning to, what I
myself always thought was the way to lose weight…simply isn’t working!
Most women focus on diet and exercise first
in order to lose weight, and it’s unfortunately the wrong approach…
Source: Ortner, J. The Tapping Solution:
Weight Loss and Body Confidence. Accessed on 10/22/12. http://www.thetappingsolution.com/weight-loss/index-1dollar.html
an article exhibiting not only the connection to emotional stress with weight,
but heart health!
This review provides an up-to-date summary of
the evidence from clinical and epidemiologic studies indicating that persons
with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) may have an increased risk of
coronary heart disease and possibly thromboembolic stroke. Persons with PTSD, a
common anxiety disorder in both veteran and nonveteran populations, have been
reported to have an increased risk of hypertension, hyperlipidemia, obesity,
and cardiovascular disease. Increased activity of the sympathoadrenal axis may
contribute to cardiovascular disease through the effects of catecholamines on
the heart, vasculature, and platelet function. Reported links between PTSD and
hypertension and other cardiovascular risk factors may partly account for
reported associations between PTSD and heart disease. The associations observed
between PTSD and cardiovascular diseases have implications for cardiology
practice and research.
Coughlin SS. Post-traumatic stress disorder
and cardiovascular disease. Open Cardiovasc Med. J. 2011;5:164-70.
Edmondson D, Rieckmann N, Shaffer JA, et al.
Post-traumatic stress due to an acute coronary syndrome increases risk of
42-month major adverse cardiac events and all-cause mortality. J Psychiatry
IFM Year of the Heart. October 25, 2012. www.functionalmedicine.org
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