Hi Fit Fam! Joe here again. Today I have some tips on the importance of mind/body/spirit connection. You are a vastly complex ecosystem that bands together in harmony to help make your meat machine get up and go. The Body, Mind, and Spirit must all work in unison for you to truly thrive mentally, physically, and emotionally. Your body, gut, senses, immune system, and lymphatic system are so instantaneously and complicatedly interacting that you can’t draw a line across the neck and say above the line it’s smart and below the line it’s menial.
As we touched on in our initial post, within all our cells we have the powerhouses aka “the mitochondria”. They produce an energy for the cells known as Adenosine Triphosphate (“ATP”). The better functioning your mitochondria are, the higher levels of ATP you have. We have about 100,000,000,000,000,000 (that would be 100 QUADRILLION) mitochondria in our body, and if they are weak and stressed they can not convert food/air into energy.
~If they are weak and stressed, you are weak and stressed~
Microbiota are the population of microorganisms such as viruses or bacteria that inhibit a particular environment; like the human body, soil, or water. They share the same characteristics and mechanisms as mitochondria. These microbes exist in any given part of the body and each area of the body (skin/gut/etc.) have totally different microbiota. 99% of metabolic function (breathing/digestion/etc) is coded for by bacterial and viral DNA! Even our emotions and our view of the world are dependant on the types of microbes and microbial DNA we have in our system…think about that for a second. Microbiota exist deep within the skin and the glands of the skin. These microbes talk to the DNA and mitochondria in our cells to influence inflammation at the cellular level. You are controlled and operated by your microbiota (in & around us) much more than you may realize…
~The gut is at the center of your health~
78% of your Microbiota are found in your gut Microbiota. 70% of the immune system is in the gut…70% OF YOUR IMMUNE SYSTEM. Thus, your food and microbiome play a significant role in your overall health. The more diverse your gut is, the more protective you are against diseases. Some of the most important cells of the immune system are in the Epithelial tissue (cells that line the outer surfaces of organs and blood vessels through the body; as well as inner surfaces of cavities in many internal organs). The gut microbiota are on the gut lining hovering right above the sterile zone of mucus, and they play a critical role in helping you absorb and digest food. You have more metabolites (the small molecular end product of metabolism used for fuel/biological signaling and other functions in the body) in your blood/gut from bacteria than your own human molecules…
~The processing power of the bacteria in your gut is equal to that of a cat’s brain~
You have about 4 pounds worth of gut microbiome. Your gut microbiome is even considered a postnatal organ (they grow after birth). So there really is science to the phrase “trust your gut”. And it’s even debatable whether or not your gut is your second or your first “brain”. The gut is the ONLY part of the body that can function independent of the brain. Every other organ requires signaling from the brain…crazy.
Chemicals and other things in the gut can impact the brain, but there is also a brain-to-gut response through pathways in the brainstem called the vagus nerve. For every message from the brain to the gut, there are NINE messages from the gut that are going back up to the brian. Your gut is running the show here people. And these messages are being signaled by your microbiota. The bacteria within the gut have a rare direct connection to the brain in a two-way system through the enteric nervous system (a mesh-like system of neurons that governs the function of the gastrointestinal tract from mouth to butt) which connects to the vagus nerve. So bacteria in your gut can produce chemicals (like neurotransmitters & peptides) that can both influence your thoughts and the way you react to your environment. And they do this by sending it directly on a one way ticket to your brain via the vagus nerve and the enteric nervous system.
Then your brain can communicate directly with the gut to try to get help from the bacteria. As your gut microbiome makes basically every hormone that your endocrine system can make. And your endocrine system through our brain can talk to your gut and help regulate hormone levels (dopamine/testosterone/etc).
~Your bacteria determines how your brain works more than your brain’s influence on your bacteria~
Depression, anxiety, schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, and more all have strong correlation to the amount and type of bacteria in your gut. This is because the microbiome sends out much more messaging to the body than what the human genome sends to the body. It is the gut bacteria which teaches your body what is a foreign invader and what is a useful building block. You need to take care of your biome so it can take care of you.
Harvard psychologist Amy Cuddy found spending just two minutes in a “power pose” (think hands on hips, elbows cocked wide, legs firmly planted) changed both psychological & physiological traits. In her research, subjects who adopted the posture took greater risks and more frequently. And two minutes of the pose was enough to increase levels of the dominance hormone testosterone by 20% & decrease the stress hormone cortisol by 15%.
Knowing that the body can drive the mind gives us a whole new set of knobs and levers to play with. Get up and move and get in tune with your body, and YOURSELF. You have the ability to shift your posture, breathing, facial expressions, flexibility, and balance as a way to tune your state of consciousness; and truly help access your true self.
You have your true self and the self you want to project to the world. How you move your body affects your brain and mind. We are walking ecosystems, and the organisms inside your body and on your skin control way more of you than you may realize.
Is the “Ego” an emergent property of mitochondrial biology? Where the mitochondria are the strongest, fastest cells in ours body and there are so many of them (Quadrillions) making micro decisions every second. Creating the animalistic ego urges: run from danger, eat everything, reproduce. It’s a thought we should contemplate as we continue to learn more daily about the complexity of life.
We are the most disembodied generation of humans ever. It’s easy to just get sucked up into it and just become another walking head on a stick. As we life in a time were most of your social and emotional life’s moderated by screens. Everything doesn’t have to, and shouldn’t, be processed first and foremost through your psychology. Reconnect your body with your brain.
~Tap into the frequency~
Repeat these phrases to yourself; Who is it that breathes you? Who is it that beats your heart?
These are automatic functions & systems in our body, but it’s that awareness that is breathing you and beating your heart. Repeat this over and you will come into the awareness that you are a meat avatar that you are occupying, take care, and have fun with. Suddenly the ego goes away…
Go & Grow,