Tag Archives: Stress

The Mind Body Connection is REAL


A couple of months ago I committed to a summer-based exploratory health initiative involving morning meditation and I promised to report back with an update. The results have been profound. And the most noticeable outcome was completely unanticipated.

For nearly my entire adult life, I have experienced IBS-like symptoms, rotating through ongoing unpredictable bouts of constipation, diarrhea and normal stools. I was never able to detect an etiology or pattern of behavior that would explain my condition and it was very difficult to cope with and manage. Just like Groundhog Day, each time I would complain about these symptoms to my primary care provider at my annual physical, he would tell me that I needed to eat more fiber. I knew this was not accurate, as I have always eaten a lot of fruits and vegetables. My doctor even went as far as giving my samples of the medication Linzess, indicated for IBS symptoms, but I never took them and don’t ever plan to.

Not until recently – until I started meditating for 10-15 minutes each morning – did my IBS symptoms completely vanish. And within days of starting my meditation practice too. I now enjoy regular bowel movements each and every morning like clockwork, something I have NEVER experienced before and previously deemed unattainable.

I shared these results with my integrative practitioner recently and she had a very logical explanation for why this is happening. In addition to the relaxation response of me meditation – SCIENTIFICALLY – our organs, namely our our brains and stomachs, require glucose to function optimally. Anyone who experiences stress on a daily basis (i.e. me) requires more glucose to help their brains function. As my integrative practitioner pointed out, anytime my brain is competing with other organs for glucose, my brain will win. And now that I have been giving my brain a rest for 10-15 minutes each morning through meditation – before doing anything, including speaking with others and/or touching my iPhone – my GI tract is opportunistically utilizing this additionally available glucose to vastly improve my digestive process and output. It seems like a miracle but, really, it’s just science. And I love it!

I am so fascinated by and appreciative of the fact that we can dramatically improve our lives through minor lifestyle modifications. Although I could have never anticipated this particular mind body connection, it is now something I swear by and absolutely recommend to others. I have even done a little research on it and stumbled an article from Harvard that validates my claim and takes a deeper dive into the science behind this phenomena. Needless to say, I plan to continue my morning meditation indefinitely!

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Make (down)time for myself

I am about to embark on an experiment that may return immeasurable results.

Although I’m a pretty easy going guy, I enjoy being “busy” and my mind is always working. My daily to-do lists are impossible to complete, which creates a great deal of physical/mental fatigue and a sense of perennial underachievement. The bottom line is that I never give myself a break. Because of this, I have committed to change the following TWO things:

1. Go to sleep when I feel tired. This seems like a no-brainer, but nearly every evening I push myself to stay awake and accomplish everything that I humanly can before falling asleep. I view sleep as letting the day “die”, which is a difficult process for me. I cannot even count how many times I have fallen asleep on the couch, fully clothed, with my iPhone in hand and/or my iPad on my lap. The consequence of this is not getting a full night of rest and recovery. It is like charging my phone battery to half-strength only and then expecting it to last for a full day, which is not reasonable or sustainable. I believe that implementing this will give my body more energy to thrive each new day that I wake up.

2. Meditate for 10 minutes immediately upon waking. Although sleep will certainly help “recharge my battery”, my mind remains on all night dreaming autonomously via an unconscious state. I believe that meditating for at least 10 minutes each morning will help turn my mind off and help “re-boot” my operating system, giving me more mental acuity and help me approach each new day with a fresh clear mind. There are many ways to meditate, but my favorite method is best described here.

I plan to put these two processes into place, effective immediately, and continue them over the course of the Summer. I look forward to sharing my results!

Robert

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Last Words

Courtesy of Google Images

Photo courtesy of Google Images

As I stand here, about to face my imminent demise, I would like to reflect upon my short life on earth.  I was taken away from my mother shortly after I was born and never saw her again.  I will never know who my birth father is.  I am only 5 years young….but I am tired, weak and ready to die.   Continue reading

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Spring Cleaning: Throw away unwanted pounds

Courtesy of Google Images

Courtesy of Google Images

2014 has been an extremely busy year thus far and I feel like I have been carrying around some extra weight. After hovering around 200 lbs for the past several months, I set a goal earlier this year to reach 190 by this Summer. Despite consistently making quality food choices, limiting my portion sizes and exercising regularly, my weight does not seem to be responding as I have come to expect. Continue reading

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Gluten-free diet transformed my digestion

Photo courtesy of Google Images

Photo courtesy of Google Images

I have been on the sidelines for years….watching, hearing, and reading various reports about the benefits of eating a gluten-free diet. I finally decided to try it and have been doing it consistently for the past month. Judging by how much of the food at markets and restaurants these days is labeled “GF”, it’s obvious that I am late to the gluten-free party. The primary reason I hesitated to try it was simple. I viewed gluten-free as yet another version of a low-carb diet in disguise. Well I’m here to report that I was wrong….potentially very wrong.

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Life Cleanse

Photo courtesy of Google Images

Photo courtesy of Google Images

First of all, apologies for the brief layoff. I have not contributed to TRUTHOLOGY in more than a month! It has certainly been a busy beginning of summer, no doubt. Very stressful too!!

Speaking of stress, I recently realized that my life is NOT stressful. My job is NOT stressful. My finances are NOT stressful. And my kids are NOT stressful. I’m willing to bet that your life is NOT stressful either….not in the least bit. Continue reading

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The 40 Year Old Vegan?

Photo courtesy of Google Images

Those of you who follow Truthology know that I have recently adopted more of a plant-based diet. What you may not know, however, is that I have considered switching to a strictly vegan diet on my 40th birthday, which occurs one month from today.

Meanwhile, over the past few months, I have been experiencing a variety of unique symptoms that are interfering with my quality of life. Symptoms have all been mild and transient, but have included headache, dizziness, fatigue and sleep disturbances.

I could have easily passed all of these off as stress-related symptoms – and I’m not denying that stress probably has a lot to do with them – but after having done some extensive research on the mix of symptoms I was experiencing, I came to the conclusion that I was suffering from a Vitamin B12 deficiency.

Since all of the symptoms I described above are consistent with a B12 deficiency, I asked my doctor to write me a lab order to have my blood drawn. The very next day, I found out that I was in fact below the normal range for Vitamin B12. Continue reading

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