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News Fasting

 

news fasting

 

With the presidential elections in the USA going on at the moment are you finding yourself frequently checking the news for updates and as a result find you are subjecting yourself to an endless stream of negative news? The media – especially the 24-hour news channels – give so much hype and attention to negative information and we, the viewers, go through the motions of collectively participating in, listening to and watching it over and over again.

Ask yourself: What is my reaction to this endless stream of negative information? Do I get caught up in the dramas and spend time agonising over world events that I am powerless to change? If I were to hazard a guess, I would think your reaction is most likely is that you debate, dwell on and ponder ways that these problems could be solved.

I have to confess it’s a pet hate of mine but bad news sells, it is compulsive viewing. The shock of an earthquake that affects human lives can have a profound effect on our mood and behavior. Our propensity to continually dwell on this type of news penetrates into the mind. Remember that negative thinking is just as powerful as positive thinking. Your thoughts negative or positive are of paramount importance to your health. Recent research in the field of neurobiology confirms that thoughts and emotions release encoded neuropeptides (short-chain amino acids) that help the neurons in our bodies to communicate. Recently many pharmacologists, doctors and psychologists around the world have worked to increase public awareness of the interrelationship that these messages have on our health.

Dr. Candace Pert, author of Molecules of Emotion, has conducted the most notable research. She has published over 250 scientific articles, discussing how our brain, glands and immune system are in constant communication through our thoughts and emotions. Her work on neuropeptides and their receptors can help us better understand the role of thoughts and emotions and their effects throughout the body. Monocytes (key components of the immune system) have receptor sites for the neuropeptides, which link emotional responses in the brain directly to the immune system. It seems that our defense system is part of a complex network that links our intellect, emotions and body, and isn’t just an independent physical guard against disease.  Pert concluded that emotions can change our body chemistry. She has contributed enormously to the paradigm shift in scientific research that is demonstrating how our thoughts and emotions literally inform every cell in our bodies, including our immune system.

However, the majority of us are guilty of paradigm blindness –we have sets of beliefs that we relate to without question and don’t challenge. Whether they are right or wrong, they are often based on cultural beliefs that have become the benchmarks by which we live our lives. We consistently search for scientific evidence to prove that what constitutes the status quo is the correct way to think. But life is not an exact science, even in quantum physics there are no definitive. Change for many represents a profound challenge that can lead to uncertainty and the denial of feasible alternatives.

New ideas are often ridiculed initially, but if science is showing that negative thoughts influence the physical biology of disease, news fasting could be nourishment for your body.

A news fast is a great way to cut loose of the excessive focus on negative events. Rather than getting involved in the relentless coverage of negative information, how about doing something to make a difference such as making a donation, volunteering for a relevant charity, or simply vowing that you’ll appreciate the good things that happen to you today. Once you’ve taken action, any action, you no longer feel so powerless, you will feel more in control and you have the added bonus of making a difference.

You may think you will be ill-informed about world affairs, but, do you need to witness acts of violence, terror, war and crime in my living room every evening. I certainly find it difficult to be on the receiving end of this doom and gloom 24/7. If you too feel daunted or bombarded by the constant tide of bad news, you may need some news management: In an effort to take the unrelenting bad news out of my day-to-day routine, I have adopted some incredibly easy coping strategies that I have added to my stress-free timeout.

  • Limit yourself to listening to one episode of the news each day.
  • Switch off the television at news time or switch to your favourite programme.
  • Maybe you could create a network of good news. The internet has lots of sites dedicated to good news such as The Good News Network and The Daily Good

Do yourself a favour and give it a go! :)