HJ: The mind is a powerful thing and how you use it is the biggest single factor influencing your health. Yes, you are born with a foundational genetic code, but this is not static and can be altered throughout your life by your thoughts, feelings and experiences. It’s the classic debate of nature vs. nurture. Nature gives us a personality, but nurture determines how that is expressed — how healthy we are, how successful we are and other highly important factors that greatly influence the course of our lives.
To put it simply, the old idea that we are locked into a certain set of traits is simply not true (outside of major, significant disabilities). The truth is that we are here to grow and learn and our biological coding reflects this.
In the article and videos below, Deepak Chopra harps on some of the latest research coming out of Harvard and other prestigious research institutions about how what we think, feel and believe actually causes, tangible, measurable physical changes in the body, which, over time, influence our genes at a fundamental level. Then, as cells replicate, they copy this new genetic code — whether that includes positive or negative changes — causing very real alterations in how our physical selves are expressed. It also causes changes in the brain as well, since our brain cells replicate based on our genetic code just like any other area of the body.
In every sense, it is, once again, confirming what spiritualists have been teaching us for millennia. Thoughts are things and they have very real effects…
Deepak Chopra On How To Modify Your Own Genes
By Kathleen Miles | Huffington Post
Physician and best-selling author Deepak Chopra has an empowering message: You can actually modify your own genes through your actions and behaviors.
“We are literally metabolizing something as ephemeral as experience or even meaning,” Chopra said in an interview this week at the Milken Institute Global Conference in Beverly Hills, California. “If somebody says to me, ‘I love you,’ and I’m in love with them, I suddenly feel great, and I make things like oxytocin and dopamine, serotonin, opiates. And if someone says to me, ‘I love you,’ and I’m really thinking they’re manipulating me, I don’t make the same thing. I make cortisol and adrenaline."
If certain experiences happen enough times, they can affect how genes are expressed and packaged without altering DNA, said Harvard Medical School professor Rudy Tanzi. This phenomenon, called epigenetics, is gaining increasing popularity among scientists.
“Every experience will cause chemical changes in your body and in your brain, and those chemical changes will then cause genetic changes," said Tanzi, who recently co-authored the book Super Brain with Chopra. “If those genetic changes occur often enough and with persistence, that can lead to modification of those genes such that they react the same way in the future because they’ve been trained.”
For example, Tanzi said, a study published in December in the journal Nature Neuroscience reported that mice inherit smell memories from their fathers — even when the offspring have never met their father or experienced the smell themselves. The study also found that the third generation of mice was born with the same smell memory.
“If you had told me that five years ago, I would’ve said it’s science fiction,” Tanzi said, referring to transgenerational epigenetic evolution. “When you talk about this stuff, the conservative evolutionary biologists, the Darwinians, will come out and attack you."
Still, he emphasized that the connection between our actions and our genes is clear.
“The brain is not static. It’s dynamic. It’s changing all the time," Tanzi said. “And you’re in charge of how it changes."