In our modern world, we seem to find it harder to relax. Our lives are full of busyness and we are constantly bombarded with stressors; our minds are continually chattering and full of worry. What we often don’t realise is this chronic state of mental unease is the beginning of disease in our body. When we are in this constant mental state of agitation, our body is on constant alert, our metabolic rate increases, our adrenal glands are on overdrive and our brains are giving the signal to pump out more cortisol (the degenerative hormone) into our blood.
Cortisol is important when we need to fight or take flight, and it has helped us survive, but it is only good in small doses. Cortisol is very hard on our bodies and when we have too much of it in our blood, for too long, it accelerates our physical decline. Ageing us faster, it acts as a destructive agent. This is bad news. Because we have become habituated to a state of high alert, this same hormone we called upon to save us in emergencies, is now pumping through our bodies on a daily basis and accelerating our degeneration. In essence the high-pressure lifestyle of our age has put our bodies into self-destruct gear.
It is a fact that physical and mental illness is hitting people in ever increasing numbers and at much younger ages despite the fact that, as a species, we are the most resourceful and scientifically advanced civilization of human history. We also know, but habitually ignore the fact, that the mind is the gatekeeper of our health and well being.
When scientists observe the activity of the brain during different mental states, it is clear that positive mental states create positive effects in the physical body. For example when in a state of deep relaxation or meditation, the brain enters what is commonly referred to as the delta brainwave state. This is the state of deep healing. While in this state, the brain sends signals to the body to release regenerative, ant-aging hormones (DHEA and Melatonin) into the blood serum while also giving the command to reduce the cortisol that gets released during high alert and stressed mental states.
Similarly, there have been numerous case studies where patients suffering potentially terminal illnesses where exposed to deep relaxation, and meditation techniques. Compared to the individuals of the control group those exposed to regular ‘doses’ of deep relaxation had either completely healed or extended their longevity substantially compared to those in the control group. What is conclusive is that time to relax deeply and ease our minds is crucial to our health, it is the antidote to the high-pressured lives most of us are living and without it, most of us will die younger than we need to.
A daily dose of deep relaxation, will not only improve your health, but will improve your overall mental state. As well as releasing regenerative hormones, being in a deeply relaxed state also releases endorphins and the ‘happy’ neurotransmitter serotonin. By adopting a daily practice to deeply relax, you will, in time, normalise yourself into a mentally happy state.
One of the most, or perhaps the most, effective way to achieve a state of deep relaxation is through meditation. Meditation is tranquility for the mind, and where the mind goes, the body follows. However meditation is a serious practice that does not suit everyone. If meditation does not appeal, there are other ways to achieve this, and one must find what suits best. Using relaxation, meditative or binaural beat recordings are a proven, easy and effective choice. Alternatively, yoga, or tai chi might suit better. Whichever means one decides upon is secondary to the result, what is most important is that the technique used causes the brain to slow down its brainwave frequency where the damage of a high gear life can be reversed.
For more information on the positive effects of meditation and binaural beat recordings: Positive Mind States / Binaural Beats / Anti-aging
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