Positive Thinking Can Heal

What happens in the brain informs what happens in the body and a positive attitude can therefore literally impact your health. Lisa R. Yanek, M.P.H., and professor Judith T. Moskowitz, Ph.D., both conducted studies independently of each other which showcase this point.

Johns Hopkins expert Lisa R. Yanek, M.P.H., specifically looked at heart disease. She and her colleagues found that people with a family history of heart disease who managed to maintain a positive outlook were one-third less likely to have a heart attack or other cardiovascular event within five to 25 years. This proved true even with people who had the most risk factors for coronary heart disease.

Yanek believes that a positive personality is largely inherited but acknowledges …

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Don’t Look Away

The summer of my junior year of college, the man I loved abandoned me for heroin, and I retreated inside my eating disorder. I began volunteering at a homeless shelter for women in Chicago, IL, despite struggling with body dysmorphia to the point where I otherwise refused to be seen. The night I came home from my first shift I glanced in the mirror and for a few minutes was okay with my reflection. This helped me realize that body dysmorphia served a purpose in my life and was a maladaptive coping mechanism, like the eating disorder I had been battling since age fourteen. I later found treatment at a program called Insight, in Chicago, IL, but not before things …

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Eating Disorders and Chemical Dependency Share Strong Similarities

According to the National Association of Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders, 1 in 10 of those suffering with bulimia or binge eating disorder have a comorbid substance abuse disorder. This makes sense if you view eating disorders as a maladaptive coping mechanism like chemical dependency.

The Ace Study gives a strong sense of how body image is often symbolic. The ACE Study was developed by a man named Dr. Vincent Felitti and asserted that there was a correlation between adverse childhood experiences and health problems later in life. His inspiration for the ACE Study began in the mid-1980s when he worked at Kaiser Permanente’s Department of Preventive Medicine in San Diego. While he was there, he noted that patients in …

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