I read several years ago of a study done at Harvard. The purpose of the study was to determine if stress had any affect on allergies. Turns out it does, quite significantly. The more stressed you are, the greater your reaction to allergens. When people who showed an allergic response to a host of things (e.g., cats, pollen, dust, etc.) were taught various relaxation methods, including meditation, and then exposed to the same allergens, there was no (or very little) allergic response. It was concluded that the stress hormones greatly aggravate the body’s allergic response. The take home message is that relaxation techniques are essential to maintain a sense of homeostasis. On a similar note, I read with great interest today of a recent study reported that exposure to plastic compounds (known as PFC’s), found in Teflon coatings, fast food containers, microwave popcorn bags, even stain resistant carpeting,, etc., have a negative impact on kid’s immune systems, particularly the effects of vaccinations. YIKES! The conclusions of this new study suggest sthat these chemicals may be weakening the entire immune system; most likely not just in children, but in everyone.
Stress Tip for the Day:
Take time each day to sit quietly and relax. Listen to soft instrumental music. Close your eyes and focus on your breathing. Sit still for 5- 10 minutes each morning and clear your head. Release your fears, anxieties and frustrations with each breath. As you do this, you will see that you have an inner strength that will guide you through the day. Additionally, make a habit to remove as much plastic in your life as possible, from the way you prepare your food to the toilet seats and clothes you wear (opt for cotton and wool over synthetic polymers made from petroleum products). Honor your immune system today!
Links, Books and Movies Worth Noting:
Last year I picked up a book called Plastic: A Toxic Love Story. I HIGHLY recommend reading this book to become more educated about the dangers of repeated exposure to these petroleum products so prevalent in our lives.
Here are some links for more information about stress and allergies:
Quote for the Day:
“The difference between an itch and an allergy is about one hundred dollars.” —Anonymous
Photo for the Day:
I took this photo for my college textbook section on pet therapy. Many people are allergic to cats (it appears to be something in the cat’s saliva which is found on the cat’s coat when they wash themselves… Be sure to wash your hands before you touch your face. Equally important, be sure to meditate, if you are allergic to cats…and see what happens.
Brian Luke Seaward, Ph.D. is an internationally renowned expert in the fields of stress management, mind-body-spirit healing and stress and human spirituality. He is the author of over 10 books including the bestsellers, Stand Like Mountain, Flow Like Water, Stressed Is Desserts Spelled Backward, The Art of Calm, Quiet Mind, Fearless Heart and Managing Stress (7e) and the forthcoming, A Beautiful World: The Earth Song Journals. He can be reached through his website: www.brianlukeseaward.net
© Brian Luke Seaward, Ph.D.