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Neuroscience Reveals How A 50-Year-Old Can Have The Brain Of A 25-Year-Old

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    Multiple studies have shown that meditation literally alters the structure of various parts of the brain.

  • Reflect On:

    What would happen if billions of people meditated?

Science is revealing various mindfulness techniques that can literally change and restructure our brain. Neuroscientist Sara Lazar from Mass General and Harvard Medical School is one of the latest to illustrate this. After she sustained running injuries, she took up yoga. It had a tremendous effect on her, which inspired her to start researching the scientific literature that’s available on mindfulness meditation, which is one of the categories into which yoga falls into.

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“The yoga teacher made all sorts of claims, that yoga would increase your compassion and open your heart,” said Lazar. “And I’d think, ‘Yeah, yeah, yeah, I’m here to stretch.’ But I started noticing that I was calmer. I was better able to handle more difficult situations. I was more compassionate and open hearted, and able to see things from others’ points of view.”

In her research, she found a plethora of evidence showing that meditation can decrease stress,  depression, anxiety, and pain as well as increase one’s quality of life, among other things.

Obviously she was very curious at this point, and being a neuroscientist, she started doing her own research to find out what effect meditation could have on the brain.

In her first study, titled “Meditation experience is associated with increased cortical thickness,” she found exactly that. Her research showed that meditation could spark structural changes “in areas of the brain that are important for sensory, cognitive and emotional processing. The data further suggest that meditation may impact age related declines in cortical structure.” (source)

That particular study used long-term meditators who had at least 7 years of experience with the practice compared to a control group with no experience. People with a strong meditation background had increased gray matter in several areas of the brain, including the auditory and sensory cortex as well as insula and sensory regions. An increase in gray matter was also found in the brain region linked to decision making and working memory, which would be the frontal cortex.

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What’s interesting here is that the frontal cortex shrinks as we age, but in this particular study, the 50-year-old meditators had the same amount of gray matter as those half their age. How astonishing is that?

Lazar and her team of researchers went on to publish a second study titled “Mindfulness practice leads to increases in regional brain gray matter density.” (source)

This study demonstrates longitudinal changes in brain gray matter concentration following an eight-week Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction course compared to a control group. Hypothesized increases in gray matter concentration within the left hippocampus were confirmed. Exploratory whole brain analyses identified significant increases in gray matter concentration in the PCC, TPJ, and the cerebellum.

After just eight weeks of meditation, people’s brains changed in multiple ways. One was thickening in several regions of the brain, including the left hippocampus (involved in learning, memory, and emotional regulation); the TPJ (involved in empathy and the ability to take multiple perspectives); and a part of the brainstem called the pons (where regulatory neurotransmitters are generated).

What’s also interesting to note is that, in this study, new mediators experienced a shrinking of their amygdala,  a region of the brain associated with fear, anxiety, and aggression. This reduction in size of the amygdala correlated to reduced stress levels in these particular participants.

This type of discovery is nothing new. Since Lazar’s study, and even before it, a lot of research has been published.

One of the most recent studies found that different types of meditation can actually effect different areas of the brain.

As Alice G. Walton, a writer for Forbes, points out,

“Meditation and mindfulness training have accumulated some impressive evidence, suggesting that the practices can change not only the structure and function of the brain, but also our behaviour and moment-to-moment experience.”

This recent study found the same thing, and the following describes what they discovered when they scanned the participants’ brains at the end of each module and then compared the groups against one another:

“Training in Presence was linked to enhanced thickness in the anterior prefrontal cortex (PFC) and the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC), which are known to be strongly involved in attention. Affect training was linked to increased thickness in regions known to be involved in socially driven emotions like empathy: and Perspective training associated with changes in areas involved in understanding the mental states of others, and, interestingly, inhibiting the perspective of oneself.”

These results further elaborate on a wealth of previous studies showing what meditation can do to the brain.

Walton goes on to emphasize,

“Lots of research has found that experienced meditators have significantly altered brain structure and function, but a growing number of studies has also found that relatively brief meditation training in novices (for instance, the well-known eight-week MBSR program) can also shift brain function, improve well-being, and reduce symptoms of depression and anxiety.”

The Takeaway

Mediation clearly has health benefits for the brain, among other parts of the body. Not only can it be used to improve your brain, decrease anxiety, depression, fear, etc., but it’s a great way to increase empathy and feel love and compassion as well. These are qualities the world needs more of, so perhaps the world needs more meditators?

Meditation could be used for interventions in schools and in other places where children and people feel stressed. Furthermore, meditation can be used to reach different states of consciousness, and perhaps even altered states of consciousness.

There is still a lot we are learning about meditation, but one thing is for certain, and that’s the fact that it can help change an individual for the better in several different ways.

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Awareness

Covering Up The Causes of Breast Cancer Since 1985: AstraZeneca’s BCAM

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    This article was written by Sayer Ji. Founder of Greenmedinfo.com. Posted here with permission.

  • Reflect On:

    Did you know that AstraZeneca, manufacturer of two blockbuster breast cancer drugs (one of which is classified as a known human carcinogen), was the originator of Breast Cancer Awareness Month?

Why is it, do you think, that during Breast Cancer Awareness Month (BCAM) you never hear the word “carcinogen” mentioned, but are barraged a million times over by the word “cure”?

Truth be told, BCAM should be renamed Breast Cancer Un-Awareness Month, as it has very little to nothing to do with generating awareness about the true causes and solutions for the breast cancer epidemic and everything to do with making the public focus on a presumably not-yet-existent “cure” to be produced through the pharmaceutical pipeline somewhere off in the future only after enough money is raised.

Instead of identifying and addressing the known causes of cancer, like the many mammary carcinogens now identified in body care products, GMO and processed foods, and our polluted environment, the mission of BCAM is to make people think that the best way to prevent breast cancer is to “detect it early.”

And how?

By subjecting their breasts to radiation-based diagnostic screening that we now know actually causes breast cancer, and which has lead to over one million cases of falsely diagnosed and unnecessarily treated breast cancers in the past 30 years in U.S. women alone. One recent review on the topic of mammography concluded that they are harmful and should be avoided, and yet you will hear countless messages this month that breast screenings are safe and effective for reducing breast cancer mortality — technically, a lie.

This viral meme describes the underlying agenda succinctly:

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Back in 2012, when we first wrote “The Dark Side of Breast Cancer [Un]Awareness Month,” in order to shed light on this travesty, the real history of Breast Cancer Awareness Month’s origins was still relatively unknown despite the fact that it was a matter of public record. According to the Wikipedia page on the topic:

“NBCAM was founded in 1985 as a partnership between the American Cancer Society and the pharmaceutical division of Imperial Chemical Industries (now part of AstraZeneca, maker of several anti-breast cancer drugs). The aim of the NBCAM from the start has been to promote mammography as the most effective weapon in the fight against breast cancer.”

The reference link listed on Wikipedia for the paragraph above comes from the BCAM website, but is now dead. For reasons that remain a mystery, the BCAM website was taken offline by AstraZeneca in the intervening years. Despite this, the BCAM domain name — www.nbcam.org — still links directly to AtraZeneca’s HealthCare Foundation page; astounding evidence that AstraZeneca owned and controlled BCAM and still does. You can still view the WayBackMachine’s archived NBCAM website here if you are curious.

And so why is this connection so important? 

What is so disturbing about AstraZeneca’s founding role in BCAM is that it “just happens” to make two blockbuster breast cancer drugs, Tamoxifen and Arimidex — a conflict of interest so flagrant, its hard to ignore. Even more disturbing is that Tamoxifen is actually classified by the International Agency for Research on Cancer as a known human carcinogen! A carcinogenic “treatment” for breast cancer?  No wonder BCAM won’t allow the word “carcinogen” mentioned in any of its campaigns. 

Back when AstraZeneca kept the BCAM website functioning, it was easy to prove how BCAM and AstraZeneca had pinkwashed the concept of the true causes of cancer (carcinogens) from the public mind. You used to be able to plop the word “carcinogen” into the site’s search engine feature and you would retrieve the following highly suspect results:

Your search – carcinogen – did not match any documents. No pages were found containing “carcinogen”.

Likewise, back in 2012, on Susan G. Komen’s website, the term “carcinogen” only emerged twice, and both in the context of denying the likelihood of there being a connection between smoking and breast cancer. If you search the site today, the term has been further scrubbed, with few informative results retrieved with the term, and most articles referencing the term striking an apologetic or minimizing tone, as far as the real risks such exposures have.

Clearly this is strategic. There are literally thousands of possible and known carcinogens identified in various public databases, such as Toxnet.gov. Roundup herbicide, for instance, was recently reclassified as a probable carcinogen by the World Health Organization. If the goal is really to protect women and reduce breast cancer morbidity and mortality, shouldn’t Breast Cancer Awareness Month focus on identifying and reducing exposure to probable and/or known carcinogens?  Failing to do so is equivalent to deceit, if not malfeasance, is it not?

This all makes greater sense when you understand the history behind BCAM’s founder AstraZeneca. AstraZeneca was formed through the merger of Astra AB and Zeneca Group (a pharmaceutical subsidiary of Imperial Chemical Industries) in 1999. Imperial Chemical Industries, a multinational corporation responsible for producing breast cancer causing petrochemical derivatives such as vinyl chloride and pesticides, founded National Breast Cancer Awareness Month in 1985, in partnership with the American Cancer Society, in order to promote the widespread adoption of x-ray mammography, whose failings if not horrors we have documented extensively elsewhere.

This means the very corporation that contributed significantly to accelerating the breast cancer epidemic also profited and still profits from new diagnoses of breast cancer and their treatment.

Sadly, Breast Cancer Awareness Month is a time of increasing awareness not of the preventable causes of breast cancer, but of the breast cancer industry’s insatiable need to both raise money for research into a would-be “pharmaceutical cure,” and to promote its primary means of “prevention”: early detection via x-ray mammography.’It’s also a cause-marketing feeding frenzy with a disturbingly vast array of carcinogen-containing products sporting Susan G. Komen’s pink ribbon, presumably “in support” of raising awareness, including the hot pink fracking drill bit pictured above.

Please, before you consider going on a march, donating to the “cause,” or buying a pink-ribbon-bedecked product this month, consider the true origins of the year’s most widespread brainwashing event. You can also use our Cancer Research database with thousands of articles and study abstracts on treating cancer naturally.

Learn more by reading: ‘Hidden Dangers’ of Mammograms Every Woman Should Know About.

Finally, please share the meme below (save to desktop and re-upload to Facebook and other social media platforms), with the link to this article: https://tinyurl.com/pinkwashed.

Article originally published:  2017-10-02

Article updated: 2019-10-20


Sayer Ji is founder of Greenmedinfo.com, a reviewer at the International Journal of Human Nutrition and Functional Medicine, Co-founder and CEO of Systome Biomed, Vice Chairman of the Board of the National Health Federation, Steering Committee Member of the Global Non-GMO Foundation.


Want to learn more from GreenMedInfo? Sign up for the newsletter here.


Link to the original article. 

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Alternative News

Al Sharpton Cancels NYC ‘Vaccine Forum’ Amid Pressure From Physicians – But It’s Happening Anyway

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    Amid pressure from scientists and physicians, Al Sharpton cancels vaccine forum event aimed at educating the public about potential vaccine dangers. But the event is still on in a new location!

  • Reflect On:

    Why such a concerted effort from the establishment to shut down public events aimed at educating people about safety concerns regarding vaccines? If there was nothing to hide, why shut them down so aggressively?

The Rev. Al Sharpton and the National Action Network were set to host a “vaccine forum” on Oct 19th, 2019 in Harlem that would feature speakers focused on raising awareness about vaccine injuries and lack of vaccine safety.

The event was going to take place at National Action Network’s headquarters on 145th Street, and Sharpton was slated to welcome guests, alongside Robert F. Kennedy Jr., who is currently suing New York State for removing the option for parents to exercise religious exemptions to vaccines.

After the event was shut down at NAN due to pressure from prominent vaccine supporters, the location was moved to an Assembly Hall at Riverside Church. (More details below.)

Dr. Peter Hotez, who has refused to publicly debate Robert F Kennedy Jr on the matters of vaccine safety, was one of the individuals trying to shut down the event. When speaking of Sharpton he stated:

“His organization should not be hosting this event,” he said. “He should not be appearing at this event. This is an event which is intended to deliberately work towards depriving kids in Harlem of their life-saving vaccines and to make parents question the safety of those vaccines.”

Not all share Hotez’s opinion that vaccines are a safe, one size fits all pharmaceutical. And there is much evidence to support those doubts. Hence why the vaccine awareness movement is rapidly growing, it’s evidence based and that’s becoming more obvious as each day goes by.

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If there was no evidence vaccines come with serious dangers, this argument would have died out years ago. Take for example the resurgence of topics like flat earth, it had celebrity backing and was an internet phenomenon, but it died off quickly as there simply is no evidence to support the idea. With vaccines, it’s much different. More and more prominent, credible and credentialed individuals are joining the movement because the evidence continues to mount. Their goal is to assess vaccine safety and stop government from trying to force vaccines on everyone due to pharmaceutical pressures.

Dr. Sean O’Leary with the American Academy of Pediatrics also outspoken about the event:

“Just when we get done with the measles outbreak, actions like this threaten the public’s health by starting another measles outbreak, […] Here, in another part of New York City, we have folks ready to go into a community and spread more misinformation and pseudoscience.”

Again, more misinformed and opinionated statements from individuals that perhaps are simply not attempting to see the truth or who are pressured not to speak the truth. The body of evidence that expresses the lack of vaccine safety is vast. For example, a pilot study by the Federal Agency for Health Care Research found that 1 in 39 kids are injured by vaccines in some way, contrary to the estimate put forth by the CDC that suggests 1 in a million are injured –  that’s quite the gap.

It brings up the question, if there is nothing to hide in the actions of pharmaceutical companies, why are they protected by laws from ever being sued for vaccine injuries and harm? Why are public debates on the issue always cancelled? Why does the media work so hard to turn people to question things into ‘antivaxxers?’ Why do we (CE) had our reach limited on Facebook and receive ‘fake news’ strikes every time we report on vaccines? – even when the information is completely fact based…

Because there is something to hide here. If there was nothing to hide, big pharma and their control over congress, government, media, some scientists and doctors would not be working so hard to shut down people who have figured out the truth.

“It is a grave warning sign for American democracy that the pharmaceutical industry is now so powerful that it can silence debate, even in the traditional heart of civil rights activism” – Robert F. Kennedy, Jr.

If you are in the New York area, you can attend this free public event to understand more about vaccines safety on October 19th,  2019.

Speakers include: Robert F. Kennedy, Jr.; Sheila Ealey; John Gilmore; Dr. Phil Valentine; Curtis Cost; Dr. Lawrence Palevsky; Reverend Walter Sotelo; Mary Holland; Gary Null; Mitchel Cohen; and many more.

The event time and location is as follows:

Saturday, October 19th, 1:00-4:0 p.m.
Assembly Hall at Riverside Church
91 Claremont Avenue, New York, NY

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Awareness

Medical Medium: The Two Causes Of Chronic Illness & The Power Of Your Thoughts

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    Medical Medium is one of the most influential figures in the alternative health movement, and he firmly believes that our thoughts and beliefs can play an integral role in our health and wellness.

  • Reflect On:

    Are you or a loved one currently battling a chronic illness? If so, how do you view it and what are you doing to help your body overcome it?

For those of you who aren’t familiar with his work, Anthony William (also commonly known as the Medical Medium) is the author of several New York Times bestselling books including Liver Rescue and Life-Changing Foods. He’s also the primary figure behind the now viral Global Celery Juice Movement–a subject that we covered in great detail earlier this year.

However, what really sets Anthony William apart in the alternative health world is that the source of his insights is far more “alternative” than most of his equally successful counterparts. You see, rather than regularly citing scientific studies or findings throughout each of his books, Anthony instead credits a higher source that he channels out of compassion and a desire to truly heal us all–something that many believe modern medicine struggles with. (To learn more about Anthony’s incredible story read this.)

Several of us connected to Collective Evolution, myself included, have put many of Anthony’s suggestions into practice and I can say from personal experience that I’m grateful to have done so. As just the adoption of daily morning celery juice alone has worked wonders at improving both my own health and the health of my mother in just a few short months.

As part of the upcoming Hay House Heal Summit, two new videos featuring Anthony have recently been released, both of which share a perspective on our health that is certainly worth considering.

The Two Causes Of Chronic Illness

As Anthony outlines in the video, chronic illness ultimately boils down to the presence of toxins and pathogens. Toxins are defined as poisonous substances that are products of the metabolic activities of a living organism, while pathogens are causative agents of disease.

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Whether it be through the food that we are eating, the air that we are breathing, the surfaces that we are touching, or the liquids that we are drinking, our bodies are regularly exposed to things that both build up toxins and/or present us with triggers of illness that are only made stronger by the existing toxins within our body for it to feed and thrive off of.

It therefore becomes imperative that we consider taking proactive measures–whether it be those recommended by the Medical Medium or otherwise–to both rid our body of existing toxins and minimize the amount of new toxins we expose it to. I’ve personally found being more conscious of the dietary choices that I make, and opting to make my own food with non-processed organic ingredients as often as possible, as incredibly helpful in doing exactly this, especially when paired with celery juice first thing in the morning to help flush out pre-existing and new toxins I’ve managed to take on.

The Power Of Your Thoughts

Within this video, Anthony touches upon an aspect of health that I’ve become particularly connected to over the past 3 years through my work with the documentary Heal. Heal is a film that features some of the greatest minds in the alternative health movement including Deepak Chopra, Dr. Joe Dispenza, Kelly Brogan and the Medical Medium himself in an exploration of the role that our thoughts can play in our ability or inability to heal from illness and disease. (Note: If you haven’t seen it, the film is available on Netflix.)

While toxins and pathogens may play the physical leading roles in the development of disease, many believe that our thoughts and beliefs may play just as critical a role.

Whether you or someone close to you is or has battled a chronic illness, we all know that they can be scary, frustrating, and a million other related adjectives making the development of negative beliefs seemingly natural. While completely controlling them may not be possible, as Anthony points out in this video, it’s certainly worth at least attempting to minimize them.

For proof of this, look no further than the integral role that placebos have played in many studies. It may not do all of the work when it comes to your healing, but cutting back on the less than pleasant beliefs and showing yourself some compassion can only help (even if just mentally) in your healing journey.


If the above videos resonated with you, I encourage you to sign up for the FREE Hay House Heal Online Summit taking place from October 23rd – 29th. It’s not only slated to feature the complete interview lessons with the Medical Medium that the above two clips were taken from, but it also features several other lessons with impactful health figures like Bruce Lipton, PhD., Dr. Veronique Desaulniers, Chris Wark, Dr. Joe Dispenza and many more all set on helping you empower the powerful healer that lies within us all.

Sign up now and receive immediate access to 4 free lessons (including one with the Medical Medium) before the Summit begins on October 23rd!

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