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Just Be Positive At All Costs!! The Best Policy?

Sometimes I get scared or depressed and that’s the way it is. I’m not going to fake it to myself.

 

In the early 2000s a member of my family whom I love dearly (obviously) was diagnosed with stage III ovarian cancer. Everyone who knew her was devastated of course, particularly as her sister had died from the same affliction several years before. This family member, let’s call her ‘Eva’, was given a grave prognosis - a 20% she’d survive four years. We told ourselves, each other and friends or acquaintances that Eva was tough as nails and unquestionably, objectively, easily in the top 20% by pretty much any standard - she’d beat the odds. So far we’ve been right. It’s been ten-plus years and Eva’s doing great; traveling, enjoying life and dealing with the treatments in the same way she deals with everything else- tough as nails.

Honestly, I think Eva took the news better than the rest of us. She’s always tackled life with a cheerful but fervent pragmatism, trusting in logic and rationality above all else and this was no different. A number of friends and relatives were confounded by Eva’s perpetuation of an unshakably rational approach to and despite the diagnosis. Much to their bewilderment (and often dismay) she’d kindly decline invitations to religious functions meant to soothe her concerns through faith. Just as she’d pass on the endless series of folk remedies, teas, supplements, herbs, homeopathic solutions and cure-alls they’d heard or read about (all of which had been ignored or suppressed by Western Medicine).

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Meditation Reduces Loneliness

Meditation significantly reduced expression of inflammatory genes

 

Many elderly people spend their last years alone. Spouses pass and children scatter. But being lonely is much more than a silent house and a lack of companionship. Over time, loneliness not only takes a toll on the psyche but can have a serious physical impact as well.

Feeling lonely has been linked to an increased risk of heart disease, Alzheimer's disease, depression and even premature death. Developing effective treatments to reduce loneliness in older adults is essential, but previous treatment efforts have had limited success.

What to do? Researchers at UCLA now report that a simple meditation program lasting just eight weeks reduced loneliness in older adults. Further, knowing that loneliness is associated with an increase in the activity of inflammation-related genes that can promote a variety of diseases, the researchers examined gene expression and found that this same form of meditation significantly reduced expression of inflammatory genes.

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