Principle of Health: # 1 Body and Mind Are Very Close

We are still looking at 5 outstanding qualities of the body – the first of man’s 3 parts [body, mind, and spirit].

Quality # 4: The Body and Mind Have a Very Close Relationship

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One author described this relationship as “mysterious and wonderful.” The condition of one greatly affects the other.  The body is strengthened and built-up by what we eat and drink; how we exercise, rest, and more.  So, because the body and mind have this close 2-way relationship, when we work at improving the body we automatically strengthen the mind. Or if we neglect or abuse the body, we are abusing the mind as well.

This is important since the mind [in the brain] controls our entire person including our thoughts, feelings, and behaviors. We are unique individuals because of our minds. The field of medicine that studies this fascinating connection is called psychosomatic medicine. Here are three examples of this remarkable body-mind relationship.

• One Way The Body Affects The Mind:
Feeling irritable, fatigued, and even depressed can be signs of Vitamin B 1 [thiamine] shortages, caused by eating and drinking too many foods with too much refined sugar [like soda, donuts, cookies, etc]. Vitamin B1 keeps the nerves functioning well, helps make energy by breaking down carbohydrates, and helps to keep the mental health in balance.

How does sugar deplete B vitamins? First, all refined sugars [like white sugar and high fructose corn syrup] have no vitamins, minerals, or fiber. They are ‘empty’ foods and don’t provide anything the body needs. But refined sugars are in so many things [check labels].  Second, to break down refined sugars the body needs B vitamins, especially B1 and minerals, especially calcium.  Since sugars don’t have these nutrients, each time we eat sugar the body has to pull B vitamins and calcium from its storage. Over time, this can result in deficiencies.

Note: Getting lots of sugar from foods and beverages also dulls and weakens brain function in adults and kids and decreases the ability to reason, understand, and figure things out.

MS Tip: I’ve finally learned not to use too many sugary foods and beverages – even over-ripe bananas!  Sugar ‘fogs’ up my thinking and makes concentrating harder [also weakens my muscles; makes me sleepy; and makes it easier to get sick].  And twice, I was unable to stand or walk because of eating too much sugar.  Scary!  Since MS is a problem with the nerves, my foods [and yours too] need to be those that feed the nerves and not starve them.  When I eat oats, brown rice, kidney beans, chic peas, Brazil nuts, sweet potatoes, kale, or collard greens; and drink wheatgrass juice [so awesome], I move better and have more energy. They all contain B vitamins including B-1.  

Note: Eating a good variety of plant foods, as close to how nature grew them, will help provide not only Vitamin B-1, but all the other nutrients our bodies needs. 

• Two Ways The Mind Affects The Body:
The mind has tremendous influence on the body. Our thoughts, feelings, and attitudes can actually change the body chemistry. This can affect every cell in the body, making it easier for a person to be strong and healthy, weak and sickly, or even die.
One example: A positive attitude, a clear conscience, faith, hope, love, and being thankful all begin in the mind, and help improve health.
Second Example: Hatred, not forgiving, guilt, anxiety, a negative attitude, and grief – these also begin in the mind, but they break down health and invite disease and death.

Note: We can choose our thoughts, feelings, and attitudes.  They may enter our minds, but we can choose to keep them or choose something better.  This takes time and determination, but change is possible.

MS Tip: I’ve learned that even with MS, living in hope is possible. I’m different than I used to be, and many of you too. We can still do things – but differently. Hey, we are differently-abled! We can hope, dream, and do – even if it’s done differently than we ever planned. And the mind is so powerful that when hope and will power focus on something positive, amazing things can happen!

What do you think about all this?

Copyright © 2013 Regina Spence

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