You Choose

Your Choices

Did you know you can halt the disease process by learning to control your thoughts, or should I say by not allowing your thoughts to control you.

When you allow your thoughts to linger in the past, your brain doesn’t recognize that it’s the past, it thinks it’s right now and affects every part of your body. It sends messages through the vagus nerve to your gut and that gets your stomach all upset and in knots, causing all sorts of gut trouble, including inflammation. An inflamed gut wreaks havoc. You know that feel good hormone, Seratonin, well, guess what, that comes from your gut, and an inflamed gut blocks the production of serotonin.

The by product of your choices

Now that your thoughts have gotten you all upset the ball is in motion. Now your thoughts are sending messages to your brain that it is stressed and your body starts producing cortisol because it wants to rescue you from this stress. And remember your gut is lowering the production of serotonin already. This release of cortisol causes you to crave sugary, salty foods, which, if you give in, cause you to feel even worse. This can be a vicious cycle, especially if your thoughts are in control of you day in and day out. It can really impact your health regardless of how well you may be trying to eat.

“Only you choose, every day, every hour, how your life will play out. You have more control over developing disease than the genes you were born with. Choose well.” Dr. Mary Hyman

So what to do…..

What I practice doing when thoughts of a past trauma start to creep in is sit with the thoughts from the place of a third party. Reminding myself that I am no longer experiencing the trauma, the trauma has passed. I don’t necessarily try to ignore it, instead I try to love myself through it. Deep breathing has drastically helped me. I find that I can free my mind of most thoughts by concentrating on my breath. Inhaling through my nose to a count of 4, holding that breath for a count of 2, then sighing it deeply out of my mouth to a count of 6. I only practice this for a few moments, then I get up and move. I have found that moving, whether that is doing yoga, going for a walk, a run, a bike ride, or simply walking around in my yard just looking at nature brings me back to the present moment.

Stay Present

I’d be misleading you if I didn’t also tell you that you need to practice staying present. Any time I feel my thoughts starting to take over, you know, that rambling voice in my head gets on a roll, I bring myself back to a state of aware presence. Reminding myself that I am here in this space, wherever it is, right now. Reminding myself that I am the observer of my thoughts, my thoughts are not who I am. Usually bringing some silence, even if it’s noisy around me, helps me focus on the present moment.

Cause you know what, we may not be there yet, but perhaps together, we’ll get there Soon Enuff.

The Powerful Fork

Amy Lopez, FNC

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