Your Perspective and Your Health

Henry Ford, American industrialist and founder of Ford Motor Company once said, “Whether you think that you can, or that you can’t, you are usually right.” His meaning of his statement is as true today as it was in the early 1900s: when facing any particular challenge, your perspective influences the outcome. While a positive perspective can increase your determination to eat right, exercise and get a good night’s sleep, a negative one does the opposite. The first helps you reach your goals; the second creates a self-perpetuated cycle of failure. It can also wreak havoc on your physical and mental health.

Perspective, Emotions and Stress

Emotions—both positive and negative—have an indirect effect on every cell in your body thanks to neurotransmitters in your brain that trigger the release of chemicals. For example, when you experience fear, your body generates more than 1,400 chemical responses and 30 hormonal responses as a result.

Approach life with a negative perspective and you’ll experience stressful emotions including fear, anxiety, anger, jealousy and disappointment more often. The chemicals and hormones your body generates in response may cause health problems including insomnia, anxiety, depression, digestive issues, high blood pressure, weight gain and other symptoms of an unhealthy life.

On the other hand, a positive perspective reduces stress responses, effectively protecting your body and mind while promoting healthy living. Health benefits of a rosier outlook range from small bonuses, including greater resistance to the common cold, to big payoffs such as reduced risk of death from cardiovascular disease.

Nurturing a Healthier Perspective

If you’ve always found positivity to be ‘unrealistic,’ recognize that it does not mean ignoring life’s challenges or ‘sticking one’s head in the sand.’ It does mean approaching unpleasantness—big and small—in a more productive way. While you may still acknowledge the worst that can happen, you also anticipate the best. Consider these simple tips to improve your perspective and, as a result, your health.

  • Become aware of self-talk. Self-talk is the endless stream of thoughts that run through your mind every day—thoughts of which you may not even consciously be aware. If you listen to yours and ascertain they’re primarily negative, make an effort to change. Start by refusing to say anything to yourself that you wouldn’t say aloud to someone else.
  • Focus on the positive. Appreciate and enjoy what you have rather than worrying about what you don’t. Look for that metaphorical silver lining when things don’t go your way. Don’t waste precious time dwelling on what went wrong.
  • Accept what you cannot change. Some things in life—like traffic, the weather and your boss—are beyond your control. While you cannot change these challenges, you can change your reaction to these them.
  • Surround yourself with positive people. The people around you can influence your reaction to stressful events. Reduce your time spent with friends and acquaintances that regularly practice negativity. Seek out those who encourage you to go for your goals.
  • Change your routine. If you’ve determined you’re stuck in a negativity cycle, change your routine. Something as simple as switching from cereal to eggs for breakfast, taking a new route to the office, or trying a new class at the gym, can alter your perspective.
  • Pursue small steps. Whether you want to lose 100 pounds or cut back on sodium, small steps towards your goal are not only less intimidating but also more sustainable. With each success, you’ll find greater motivation to continue.

Is Massage Medicine?

Is Massage medicine?

Massage is one of the options most people choose to provide themselves a luxury from a busy and demanding lifestyle. It really feels great to have it done to yourself. A person, who has undergone a massage therapy, instantly feels good afterwards. Although it is just considered as a way to relax, some studies prove that it can also provide more benefits to your life and health.

Research found what massage therapy can do in one’s life and health. It helps boost the immunity of women with breast cancer, eliminates the asthma symptoms and enhances the grip strength of people with carpal syndrome. Exhausted muscles after exercise can restore their energy after massaging them. This becomes possible because of its ability to stimulate the cell’s mitochondria. In addition, it is proven that massage is capable of helping people with fast metabolic problems and babies who were born prematurely to gain weight.

The massage therapy aims to give therapeutic values to people who receive it. It includes pressure on the soft tissues of the body to allow proper blood circulation and eliminate stress and pain.

What massage therapy can do to your life and health is amazing. According to a journal called Science Translational Medicine, massage has the ability to reduce the production of cytokines, a protein released when there is inflammation in the body. According to an associate professor of University of Colorado School of Medicine’s Division of General Internal Medicine, a 45-minute massage therapy has the ability to reduce the level of cortisol in one’s body. Cortisol is a stress hormone in the blood that negatively affects the other hormones of the body.

According to the U.S. News, a resident of Hudson, Wisconsin named Bill Cook had a disease called cardiac sarcoidosis. This disease makes the white blood cells coagulate and react to the foreign substance in the body. This condition scars the heart, which can lead to death.

Because of this condition, Cook was put to an organ transplant waiting list. The wait lasted for more than a decade. According to Cook, his heart was becoming weaker and weaker during that time and had to find a way to aid his body’s circulation.

His cardiologist then prescribed massage therapy. According to Cook, the massage therapy did an amazing job in his life and health. It helped the circulation of the blood in his fingers, toes and legs. Cook continued the massage therapy along with the proper diet until he underwent the organ transplant in 2013.

A consumer survey, supported by the American Massage Therapy Association, was conducted. The respondents were asked about their primary reason for receiving a massage. 77% of the respondents answered that it is because of medical, stress or health-related issues.

According to the American Hospital Association, among the 1007 hospitals surveyed, 80% of the hospitals offer massage as one of their complementary and alternative medicine therapies and 70% use massage therapy for pain management. Massage is increasingly becoming popular as an alternative medicine. It is currently included as one of the therapies some doctors prescribe to their patient.

Unlike before, massage therapy is increasingly being accepted in the world of conventional medicine, which is proven to be effective in one’s life and health.