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Potential Causes of Self-Harm & Psychiatric Disorders That Should Be Considered

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    Policymakers and mental health providers are convinced that mental illness is organically formed or genetic. But there are 11 other proven contributors to the development of mental illness that we can no longer overlook.

  • Reflect On:

    What have you been led to believe about mental illness? And how many of these 11 hidden causes are embedded within your life or the life of a loved one?

Every day in the headlines we hear about another school shooting or another teen suicide. What is going on? Why aren’t we getting to the bottom of this? What are we doing to help prevent the next tragedy? As I learn about another, I get more and more frustrated that nothing is changing.

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We need to start taking a more in-depth look at why our children are so depressed, anxious, and angry – our lives depend on it. If not properly treated, obsessive thoughts turn into compulsive behavior, and we will hear about the next suicide or mass shooting when we turn on the news tomorrow.

What Is OCD?

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) is categorized by the DSM-5 (the diagnostic manual and bible of psychiatry) as an anxiety disorder. However, it is a maladaptive coping skill that develops as a result of trying to manage the overwhelming fear or worry one feels. A person may start obsessively feeling nervous about a home intruder, so may check the alarm system or door locks fifty times before bed. One may fear the flu, so may wash their hands 50 times.

As an attempt to quiet the sense of alarm, the compulsion provides a “quick fix” for the negative intrusive thoughts.  It gives a temporary sense of power over the problem and helps someone feel like they are doing something about it. But it’s a trap because it just feeds into a vicious cycle. The more one follows the rituals, the more they need to do them.

The Darker Side of Obsessive Thoughts & Behaviours “Harm-OCD”

Intrusive thoughts can be benign, like song lyrics that continuously play in one’s head or obsessive behaviors like overly tidying one’s apartment. However, if paranoia, feelings of isolation, anger, and depression are already brewing it could lead to sinister thoughts like harming themselves or others.

Some believe that OCD can masquerade as psychosis as it closely mimics the symptoms of the psychiatric disorder schizophrenia. When a person gets lost inside their depressed and chaotic mind, they become infatuated with their depressive thoughts, violent video games, building bombs, guns, and revenge. Some begin planning their suicide, while others start stockpiling weapons to carry out the next mass shooting.

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A newer study published in the Journal of Molecular Psychiatry, concluded that “those with OCD are ten times more likely to commit suicide and patients with OCD are at significant risk of suicide, even in the absence of other psychiatric conditions.” Others with OCD have brutally violent thoughts of hurting others that consume one’s mind making it difficult separating visions from reality.

According to a study published in the Industrial Psychological Journal, anger attacks are associated with a surge of autonomic arousal. Symptoms include tachycardia, sweating, flushing, and a feeling of being out of control were present in half of the patients with obsessive-compulsive disorder, and they correlated with the presence of comorbid depression.

The Problem

Policymakers and mental health providers are so convinced that these individuals have an organic or genetic mental illness. They have called off the search for a better understanding of these conditions.  When they start recognizing the epidemic of teen suicide and teen violence, they call for more psychiatric labels and more psychiatrists to prescribe medication. However, they don’t acknowledge that medication does nothing to address the conditions that derail the mind in the first place. And, drugs often only mask symptoms without considering dangerous side-effects. Antidepressant medications are driving people to psychosis. In fact, Americans are admitted daily to psychiatric institutions as a direct result of psychosis caused by the drugs themselves.

The 11 Hidden Causes of Psychiatric Disorders Almost No One Considers

1. The Standard American Diet (SAD)

Neurotoxic chemicals and foods are void of essential nutrients and can lead to obsessive thoughts, depression and violent behavior.  There are extreme amounts of refined sugar/salt and thousands of chemicals allowed in the American food and drink supply. Many of them are harmless, but others such as artificial colors, flavors, preservatives, emulsifiers, high fructose corn syrup, sugar, hydrogenated vegetable oil, and glyphosate (GMOs) are not compatible with human bio-chemistry. They are destroying our immune system and causing many mental health symptoms. A CSPI report, Food Dyes: A Rainbow of Risks, further concludes that the nine artificial dyes approved in the United States are carcinogenic, cause hypersensitivity reactions and behavioral problems. Also, our food supply is so processed and refined that they do not contain adequate healthy protein and they strip away many vitamins and minerals that are essential to our health and replace it with synthetic substitutes.

In a 2014 article in the American Journal of Public Health, the relationship between diet and mental health in children and adolescents was evaluated. “There are numerous potential biological pathways by which diet quality may have an impact on mental health in children and adolescents.” First, a poor-quality diet that is lacking nutrient-dense foods may lead to nutrient deficiencies that have been associated with mental health issues. For example, the dietary intake of folate, zinc, and magnesium is inversely associated with depressive disorders, whereas dietary long-chain omega-3 fatty acids are inversely related to anxiety disorders.

2. Gut Dysbiosis

The gut microbiome has become a topic of major interest as of late, with a new focus specifically on psychiatric disorders. The human body hosts an enormous abundance and diversity of microbes, which perform a range of essential and beneficial immune and metabolic functions. In a June 2016 edition of the Journal of Molecular Psychiatry, the authors take a look at how microbes in the gut affect brain function, and how imbalances of gut bacteria can lead to mental illness. “Evidence is now emerging that, through interactions with the gut-brain axis, the bidirectional communication system between the central nervous system and the gastrointestinal tract, the gut microbiome can also influence neural development, cognition, mood, and behavior.”  Functional medicine M.D.s recognize how poor diet, pesticides, antibiotics, steroid use and other factors are influencing brain function by destroying healthy gut bacteria and negatively shaping the gut microbiome.

3. Food Sensitivities

Often not recognized in the mainstream mental health model, food allergies and sensitivities can wreck-havoc on mental health. The antibodies produced when a person consumes food that they have an intolerance to can cause intestinal permeability and trigger inflammation in the brain which can lead many mental health symptoms, including increased anxiety/OCD, insomnia, brain fog, hyperactivity, impulsivity, irritability, and rage. Overaggressive behaviors are provoked by an immune reaction to every-day foods. Reactions range from irritability to  aggression to psychosis. Some of the more common food intolerances are gluten, dairy, corn, soy, and nuts.

4. Pediatric Autoimmune Neuropsychiatric Disorders (PANDAS or PANS)

PANDAS is associated with an unresolved strep infection. It wreaks havoc on the immune and neurological system, causing brain encephalitis/inflammation. Symptoms associated with this autoimmune disorder are facial tics, OCD symptoms, anorexia, depression, paranoia, irritability, hyperactivity, sleep disturbances, and psychosis. Pediatric Autoimmune Neuropsychiatric Disorders (PANS) can be triggered by other infectious agents as well, including Epstein Barr and Lyme Disease. Many physicians who treat a large number of Lyme patients acknowledge that Lyme Disease can cause “Lyme Rage,” which includes psychosis and violent behavior. There are more than one hundred peer-reviewed medical journal articles linking tick-borne diseases to mental symptoms and quite a few that reference Lyme-induced rages.  As Dr. Kenneth Bock, MD points out in his book, “Healing New Childhood Epidemics,” PANDAS/PANS cook the brain of these kids.  The infection attacks the brain’s basal ganglia, causing severe thought malfunctions and maladaptive behavior. The affected person could fly into uncontrollable rages and violent behavior.

5. Genetic Mutations

Our genetic profile is not the end of our story. The environment in which we live and breathe, genetically modified foods and the chemicals we eat and inject have a direct influence on the expression of our genetic code, by altering the expression of genetic information. In the study of disease, researchers in the field of epigenetics are increasingly finding that the “turning on or off” of our DNA is affecting our mental health.

The MTHFR gene mutation inhibits the body’s ability to transform vitamin B12 into vital folate enzymes. A healthy MTHFR gene converts vitamin B12 to folate (B9), an essential vitamin for brain, spine, and nerve health. Deficiencies of essential B vitamins can lead to developmental problems, mood disturbances including increased anxiety and depression.

Faulty expression of the COMT gene can also cause a variety of problems including irritability, hyperactivity, mood swings, OCD, sleep issues, and lower frustration and pain tolerance.

The “Warrior Gene” MAO-A (Monoamine oxidase A) is one of the two genes that encode mitochondrial enzymes. It is responsible for catalyzing the oxidizing amines, such as serotonin, norepinephrine, dopamine, and adrenalin. Mutation of this gene results in Brunner syndrome. MAO dysfunction (too much or too little MAO enzyme activity) is thought to be responsible for many psychiatric and neurological disorders including depression, mood swings, OCD, schizophrenia, substance abuse, migraines, irregular sexual maturation.  It is also associated with behaviors associated with attention deficit disorder (ADD) and autism.

6. Heavy Metal Toxicity

Brain damage and inflammation can also be caused by heavy metal toxicity – like mercury, aluminum, and lead. They can promote aggressive, antisocial and violent behaviors. Lead exposure is known to cause learning and behavioral problems. The Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry published a study that demonstrates the strong relationship between high levels of lead levels in blood and hyperactivity, aggressive and antisocial behavior in children.

7. Emotional Wounds & Trauma

Heightened anxiety due to upsetting life events in a person’s life can lead to OCD and depression. The lower a person’s resiliency, the higher level of sensitivity and dysfunctional thinking is believed to make a sufferer more vulnerable to developing it. Stressful situations and traumatic event(s) that can lead to OCD include but are not limited to a death of a loved one, divorce, an accident, a move, school pressure and bullying, as well as an upsetting or abusive home environment.

8. Video Gaming & Too Much Screentime

Screens are being used more and more as a method of escaping from the stress of life. However, it may be backfiring. Disassociating in this way is taking teens away from the dealings of everyday life and is creating an alter reality where they are not learning how to foster real or meaningful relationships. A recent study published in the Journal of Clinical Psychological Science finds that “increased time spent with popular electronic devices — whether a computer, cell phone or tablet — might be contributing to an uptick in symptoms of depression and suicidal thoughts.” The study established a correlation between long hours of daily screen time and symptoms of alienation. A 2016 article in the New York Post, “It’s Digital Heroin: How Screens Turn Kids into Psychotic Junkies” discussed how addicting these screens are and how they are affecting our kid’s mental health. “Brain imaging research is showing that they affect the brain’s frontal cortex — which controls executive functioning, including impulse control — in exactly the same way, that cocaine does. Technology is so hyper-arousing that it raises dopamine levels — the feel-good neurotransmitter most involved in the addiction dynamic — as much as sex.”

9. Too Much Caffeine

Teens are lining up at coffee shops and consuming an alarming amount of caffeine-loaded energy drinks. Highly concentrated caffeine aggravates obsessive/upsetting thoughts and can set anxiety out of control. This central nervous system stimulant can cause dependency and withdrawal and cause insomnia as well. Although some studies point to the positive mental effects of caffeine, it makes sense that energy drinks could be a contributing factor for kids and teens feeling both homicidal and suicidal. Caffeine intoxication keeps the body in “fight or flight” mode. This can leave people feeling very frightened and threatened. According to the Journal of BJPsych Advances, “In psychiatric in-patient facilities, caffeine has been found to increase anxiety, hostility and psychotic symptoms.”

10. Sleep Deprivation

In a 2011 pediatric OCD study published in the Journal of Anxiety Disorders, researchers found a strong correlation between insufficient sleep and severe compulsive behavior. While kids with OCD sometimes only exhibit compulsions (without the obsessions), the study reflected children with both the mental and behavioral symptoms. A 2014 study published in the Journal of Psychiatric Research, implicated obsessions are a likely culprit behind disturbed sleep. Based on patients’ self-reported assessments, researchers found a link between insomnia symptoms and obsessive thoughts. Shorter sleep and delayed ability to get to sleep are associated with repeated negative and distressing thoughts that are repeated over and over again, such as “my life is not worth living.”

11. Psychostimulant Medication

It has been known for the last 35 year that stimulants have the potential to induce psychosis-like or manic-like symptoms in children. Psychotic symptoms from Ritalin can include hearing voices; visual hallucinations, urges to harm oneself, urges to harm someone else, suicide, severe anxiety, euphoria, grandiosity, paranoid delusions, confusion, increased aggression, and irritability.

Preventing Future Tragedies

Could future suicides and homicides be prevented? I believe so, and it starts with taking better care of our children.  We need to start acknowledging that people committing suicide or murder are medically ill; not mentally ill. And these causes of psychiatric symptoms need more attention.  We need more doctors to be trained in functional medicine to get to the root of the mental dis-ease. We need our insurance companies to pay for testing and treatments that will actually help our children.

We need more due diligence in our healthcare system.  And we need to stop the pharmaceuticals from leading us away from the truth. Just handing out medications to address symptoms and hoping the client follows through with recommended weekly individual psychotherapy appointments, is simply not enough. And quite honestly, these medications can be the final trigger in a homicidal or suicidal event.

I Am On A Mission

In 2012, I began counseling family members and first responders after the devastating tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary School. This led me to finish my book Healing Without Hurting. I consult with thousands of moms through social media and conduct workshops for medical professionals to teach them about holistic and natural solutions for healing mental illness and spectrum disorders.

I know from experience that addressing underlying medical issues significantly enhances the life, the health and the happiness of our children and our family.  Also, I know my mission has been successful in helping to prevent such tragedies.


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Scientists & Doctors Send Letter To Donald Trump Calling For A Moratorium On 5G Wireless Technology

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    A number of doctors, scientists and activists have sent a National 5G Resolution letter to President Trump, requesting a moratorium on 5G technology until the potential hazards for human health have been appropriately investigated.

  • Reflect On:

    How are these products approved by our federal health regulatory agencies when many doctors and scientists have emphasized that appropriate safety testing has not been conducted?

When it comes to 5G wireless technology, and wireless technology in general, doctors and scientists have been raising concerns for many years, calling for safety testing that is independent of industry-sponsored studies. You would think that safety testing for any technology that’s poised to roll out and be used by humanity at such a large scale would be subject to appropriate safety testing. Unfortunately, wireless technology has not been subjected to this type of testing, which is why many people are becoming more and more concerned. This is evident on a global level. For example, a large portion of the Swiss population has now been exposed to 5G, and thousands of people recently showed up on the Swiss House of Parliament in Bern to protest. You can read more about that here.

This is also why why a number of doctors, scientists and advocates have sent a National 5G Resolution letter to President Trump, requesting a moratorium on 5G technology until the potential hazards for human health and the environment have been investigated appropriately by scientists independent from the telecom industry.

The Need For Safety Testing

Dr. Martin L. Pall, PhD and Professor Emeritus of Biochemistry and Basic Medical Sciences at Washington State University wrote a report whose title says it all: “5G: Great risk for EU, U.S. and International Health! Compelling Evidence for Eight Distinct Types of Great Harm Caused by Electromagnetic Field(EMF) Exposures and the Mechanism that Causes Them.”  In his report he bluntly stated the following:

“Putting in tens of millions of 5G antennae without a single biological test of safety has got to be about the stupidest idea anyone has had in the history of the world.”

And he’s clearly not alone in his opinion. As the Environmental Health Trust Points out,

The 5G Resolution was developed during the first three-day US medical conference fully dedicated to this topic, Electromagnetic Fields Conference on Diagnosis and Treatment, which convened in Scotts Valley, California in September. (Watch videos from the conference here.)

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The letter references the published scientific studies demonstrating harm to human health, bees, trees and the environment from current wireless technology and posits that 5G will both increase exposure and add in new technology never safety-tested for long-term exposure.

“We join with the thousands of doctors, scientists and health care providers worldwide who have recently issued appeals for urgent action on 5G to protect public health and call for a moratorium on 5G and any further wireless antenna densification until potential hazards for human health and the environment have been fully investigated by scientists independent from the wireless industry.”

“The children are our future. The scientific evidence has been clear for decades and now.”

“America has an opportunity to lead the way,” said Toril H. Jelter, MD, a pediatrician who presented at the EMF Conference with case studies on children she has treated who have dramatically improved after reducing wireless exposures. “It is my impression that health effects of wireless radiation go misdiagnosed and underdiagnosed for years. Parents, teachers and physicians need to know that hardwiring internet, phone and TV is a healthier option for our children.”

Ominous Signs

According to the 5G Resolution:

  • The FCC has ​stated ​that 800,000 antenna sites will be required to fully deploy 5G in the United States, with global deployments ​expected ​to reach almost 5 million by 2021.
  • New wireless antennas are rapidly being installed on streetlights and utility poles directly in front of homes and schools.
  • 5G will dramatically increase the general public’s daily exposure to radiofrequency electromagnetic fields (RF-EMF), in addition to the emissions from 2G, 3G, 4G wireless infrastructure already in place.
  • 5G was not premarket safety tested.
  • Research shows biological effects from levels of wireless exposures presently allowed.
  • Research on 5G emissions shows serious impacts to humans, bees, trees and wildlife.

The Electromagnetic Safety Alliance and Environmental Health Trust coordinated gathering signatories for the 5G Resolution, and both organizations also presented at the 2019 EMF Conference. You can access the full letter and see all who have signed it here. To see the latest and most recent science published on this topic, please visit the Environmental Health Trust.

The Takeaway

Is it really fair for governments and big industry to roll our products and services on the human population without any safety testing? How rigorous is the approval process? Human history is full of examples we should be learning. DDT is one example, tobacco is another one, and there are a number of substances today, like glyphosate, for example, that have been approved for use despite a large cry and publications from many scientists indicating that it’s harmful. Are we seeing the same thing with 5G? Is the rollout of 5G another example of corruption within our federal health regulatory agencies and their close ties with big business?

This is why it’s important for us to keep talking about and sharing this kind of information. With awareness comes action, with action comes change. In the meantime, if you’d like to reduce your exposure, there are a number of steps you can take. Here are 10 steps you can take to reduce your exposure to wireless radiation at home.

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Large Study Finds Antioxidants, Vitamins & Minerals Are “Substantially” Higher In Organic Food

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    A study published in the British Journal of Nutrition outlines a significant difference in nutritional content when it comes to organic food compared to non-organic food.

  • Reflect On:

    Are the justifications used to to spray our crops actually justified? Are they really necessary or can we figure out a better way of doing things?

It has long been argued that there is no difference in nutritional content between organic crops and conventional crops. However, it’s turning out that this assumption simply isn’t true. It’s no secret that more consumers are seeking organically grown food, coming from the perception that the pesticides sprayed on conventional crops are harmful to human health. But what does the science say?

A study published in the British Journal of Nutrition carried out a meta-analysis based on 343 peer-reviewed publications that indicate “statistically significant and meaningful differences in composition between organic and non-organic crops/crop based foods.”

The study found that the concentrations of “a range of antioxidants such as polyphenolics were found to be substantially higher in organic crops/crop based foods, with those of  crop-based foods, with those of phenolic acids, flavanones, stilbenes, flavones, flavonols and anthocyanins being an estimated 19 (95 % CI 5, 33) %, 69 (95 % CI 13, 125) %, 28 (95 % CI 12, 44) %, 26 (95 % CI 3, 48) %, 50 (95 % CI 28, 72) % and 51 (95 % CI 17, 86) % higher, respectively.”

In layman’s terms, the study found that Phenolic acids are 19% higher in organic foods,  Flavanones are 69% higher in organic foods (linked to reduced risk of several age-related chronic diseases),  Stilbenes are 28% higher in organic foods, Flavones are 26% higher in organic foods, Flavonol is 50% higher in organic foods and Anthocyanins are 51% higher in organic foods.

Substantial Health Benefits

The higher concentration of all of these compounds in organic foods brings with it substantial health benefits. The authors note that many of these compounds have been linked to a reduced risk of a variety of diseases like cancers, CVD, and neurodegenerative disorders to name a few.

Apart from nutritional content, the study also measured for concentrations of the toxic metal Cadmium (Cd), finding that in conventional foods, “significantly higher concentrations” were found. Conventional foods appear to have nearly 50 percent more of this heavy metal than organic foods. Furthermore, significant differences were also detected for other minerals and vitamins.

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When it comes to pesticide residues on non-organic foods, the authors found that the volume of pesticide residues was four times higher in conventional crops.

Corroboration With Recent Studies

Keep in mind, the study above comes from 2014. One of the latest studies was recently published in the journal Environmental Research. It was entitled, Organic diet intervention significantly reduces urinary pesticide levels in U.S. children and adults.” 

This study highlighted that diet is the primary source of pesticide exposure in both children and adults. It found that an organic diet significantly reduced neonicotinoid, OP pyrethroid, 2,4-D exposure, with the greatest reduction observed in malathion, clothianidin, and chlorpyrifos.

The researchers noted that all of us are exposed “to a cocktail of toxic synthetic pesticides linked to a range of health problems from our daily diets.” They explain how “certified organic food is produced without these pesticides,” and ask the question, “Can eating organic really reduce levels of pesticides in our bodies?” They tested four American families that don’t typically eat organic food to find out.  All pesticides detected in the body dropped an average of 60.5% after just six days on an organic diet.

First, we tested the levels of pesticides in their bodies on a non-organic diet for six days. We found 14 chemicals representing potential exposure to 40 different pesticides in every study participant. These included organophosphates, pyrethroids, neonicotinoids and the phenoxy herbicide 2,4-D. Some of the pesticides we found are linked to increased risk of cancer, infertility, learning disabilities, Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s and more. (source)

The most significant drops occurred in a class of nerve agent pesticides called organophosphates. This class includes chlorpyrifos, a highly toxic pesticide linked to increased rates of autism, learning disabilities and reduced IQ in children. Organophosphates are so harmful to children’s developing brains that scientists have called for a full ban. (source)

Another study conducted by researchers from RMIT university nearly 5 years ago published in the journal Environmental Research found that eating an organic diet for just one week significantly reduced pesticide exposure in adults by up to 90 percent.

Sure, there may be deeper questions at play here, like how much exposure is required to cause harm. That being said, given the toxicity of these substances and the fact that they have no place in human biology, I would assume that all would agree that no amount of exposure is acceptable if we are really aspiring to optimum health.

Pesticide Origins In Chemical Warfare

A lot of these agents were initially developed as nerve gases for chemical warfare:

To understand this controversial issue it is helpful to look at the history of pesticide use. Prior to World War II, the pesticides that we use now did not yet exist. Some pesticides currently in use were in fact developed during World War II for use in warfare. The organophosphate insecticides were developed as nerve gases, and the phenoxy herbicides, including 2,4-D (the most commonly used herbicide in Canada), were created to eradicate the Japanese rice crop, and later used as a component of Agent Orange to defoliate large areas in jungle warfare. After World War II, these chemicals began to be used as pesticides in agricultural production, for environmental spraying of neighbourhoods, for mosquito eradication, and for individual home and garden use. (source)

Chemical agriculture has since been justified primarily on an economic basis. There is a lot of information out there to support the idea that organic farming is actually far more beneficial in several different ways, and the idea that chemical agriculture is necessary and more economical appears to be completely false. Have we been ‘had?’ Have we been made to believe that chemical and non-conventional agriculture is necessary to simply put large amounts of money into the hands of these agrochemical companies? What about the control that these companies have over food and environmental policy? All of these topics and concerns are certainly a good discussion for another article, as is the topic of price differences between organic foods and non organic foods. I just wanted to stick to health findings with this specific article.

At the end of the day, chemical agriculture has long been destroying health, and is having devastating consequences on our environment. It’s puzzling how it can be at all justified and we have accepted it up to now. Drastic changes are needed by the human race to address this issue. But for now, if you have the means to do so, go organic.

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Extreme Exhaustion, or ‘Burnout,’ May Increase The Risk of Fatal Heart Disorders

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    A new study associates anger, vital exhaustion, anti-depressant use, and poor social ties with incidents of atrial fibrillation.

  • Reflect On:

    How often are you mindful of your emotions? When you feel burnt out, what do you do to shift that feeling? Are you aware of how 'burning out' may negatively impact your health?

Our thoughts, feelings and emotions are connected with the physical world in many different ways. One of the most measurable ways deals with our biology, and human health. A study published in the European Journal of Preventative Cardiology explains how symptoms of ‘burnout’–feeling excessively tired, demoralized, and irritable, among others–is potentially associated with dangerous heart rhythm disturbance. It’s one of many studies that outlines how inner peace and calmness can really impact our health in a very positive way.

Vital exhaustion, commonly referred to as burnout syndrome, is typically caused by prolonged and profound stress at work or home… It differs from depression, which is characterized by low mood, guilt, and poor self-esteem. The results of our study further establish the harm that can be caused in people who suffer from exhaustion that goes unchecked.” – Dr. Parveen K. Garg of the University of Southern California in Los Angeles.

This is quite a significant finding given the fact that atrial fibrillation is the most common form of heart arrhythmia. It’s estimated that 17 million people in Europe and 10 million people in the United States will have this condition by next year, increasing their risk for heart attack, stroke, and death.

The cause of atrial fibrillation is still poorly understood, the study does mention that a nationwide registry-based Danish study found that anti-depressant use was strongly associated with AF development. In the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis, depressive symptoms were also associated with incident AF, but the association between vital exhaustion and AF was just as strong. You can refer to the full study to see the methods used to conduct it.

The Institute Of Heartmath

It’s also very important to mention that a group of prestigious and internationally recognized leaders in physics, biophysics, astrophysics, education, mathematics, engineering, cardiology, biofeedback, and psychology (among other disciplines) have been doing some brilliant work over at the Institute of HeartMath.

Their work, among many others, has proven that when a person is feeling really positive emotions like gratitude, love, or appreciation, the heart beats out a different message, which determines what kind of signals are sent to the brain. Not only that, but because the heart beats out the largest electromagnetic field produced in the body, the Institute has been able to gather a significant amount of data. According to Rolin McCratey, Ph.D, and Director of Research at Heartmath,

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“Emotional information is actually coded and modulated into these fields. By learning to shift our emotions, we are changing the information coded into the magnetic fields that are radiated by the heart, and that can impact those around us. We are fundamentally and deeply connected with each other and the planet itself.” (source)

Another great point made below by the Institute:

“One important way the heart can speak to and influence the brain is when the heart is coherent – experiencing stable, sine-wavelike pattern in its rhythms. When the heart is coherent, the body, including the brain, begins to experience all sorts of benefits, among them are greater mental clarity and ability, including better decision making.” (source)

In fact, the heart actually sends more signals to the brain than the brain sends in return. What’s even more amusing is the fact that these heart signals (from heart to brain) actually have a significant effect on brain function.

Research findings have shown that as we practice heart coherence and radiate love and compassion, our heart generates a coherent electromagnetic wave into the local field environment that facilitates social coherence, whether in the home, workplace, classroom or sitting around a table. As more individuals radiate heart coherence, it builds an energetic field that makes it easier for others to connect with their heart. So, theoretically, it is possible that enough people building individual and social coherence could actually contribute to an unfolding global coherence. –  McCratey

The bottom line? It’s important to do our best to cultivate feelings of peace, not just for our biology, but for our planet as well. These feelings represent, I believe, the natural state of human beings. The problem is that we’ve created an environment that is not conducive to our natural state.

How To Cultivate Inner Peace In The Modern World

Cultivating feelings of calm, and trying to achieve inner peace more often in one’s life can be a very hard task, especially given the fact that it’s something that’s never discussed, brought-up or even taught in school. Learning to regulate and deal with our emotions seems to be something so important to our health and well being, and ultimately our collective ability to move forward as the human race.

On an individual level, many of us are working very hard, and it’s no secret that the modern lifestyle, which seems to be a ‘grind’ for the majority of people, is not really natural for a human being. Works schedules, especially in North America, can easily cause ‘burnout.’ When you add in the fact that most of us aren’t able to do what we love to do, it simply compounds the problem.

Furthermore, we live in a day and age where new information is emerging that challenges our long held belief systems. Whether it be government corruption, for example, or something else, waking up to new information about how our world is really functioning and then realizing that it doesn’t have to be this way can also cause some unhealthy feelings that prevent us from even thinking about or being mindful about inner peace.

If you’re having trouble with that, check out our 10 Day Conscious Breathing Challenge that contains exercises and meditations proven to help activate a state of heart coherence and produce a state of calm within the human nervous system and state of being.

You can check out the CE protocol. It’s something CE founder Joe Martino developed to help people who are currently going through the process of ‘waking up’ and wish to understand how to smoothly move through this process.

Another great mindfulness technique to help you when you feel burnout or feelings of stress come along is to simply be aware of them, observe them, and be aware of your reaction to the feelings. Simply observing ourselves and being aware our own thoughts and reactions to our feelings can help see them from a different perspective. Contemplating on the feelings of ‘burnout’ alone can be of tremendous assistance and help guide you in the right direction.

Certainly, other techniques like meditation can be used, but for me, personally, observing myself and ‘catching’ myself in the moment helps me the most. It also helps me personally to shift my perspective on life within the moment, perhaps cultivate feelings of gratitude and appreciation, and remind myself that there is a deeper part of myself at play here with regards to my existence. We are here to learn, experience, and ‘play.’

Furthermore, the more we engage in our passions the more aligned we become. This will also help to decrease the feelings of ‘burnout.’ A lot of the time we are simply not spending enough time engaging in what we love to do. The more we engage in what we love to do the more we align with our purpose.

These are just my thoughts, I hope they help.

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