While we oftentimes may feel as though we are the victim of circumstance, that actually isn’t the case. Instead, according to science, our emotions change our DNA, which in turn, shapes the world that we live in.
Depression and Human DNA
One team of researchers in the U.K devised a study regarding the effects that depression has on our brains. Not only does it change our brains, it can also alter our DNA and the ways that our cells create energy. By investigating 11,500 women and their genomes, a team from the Welcome Trust Centre for Human Genetics set out to find genes that made a person more susceptible to depression. What they found was exponentially more important. What they discovered were metabolic changes in cells that had been triggered by depression.
Furthermore, they found that in women who had trauma-induced depression, there was more mitochondrial DNA than other women who suffered from depression. Mitochondria are referred to as the ‘powerhouse organelles’ because of the fact that they provide energy to the rest of the cell.
“We were surprised at the observation that there was a difference in mitochondrial DNA. So surprised it took us a long time to convince ourselves it was real, and not an artifact,” said geneticist and one of the lead researchers, Jonathan Flint, in a press release.
Intentional Changes in DNA
In another study, HeartMath researchers were able to show the physical aspects of DNA strands that could be influenced by the intentions of human beings. During the study, individuals were told to hold three DNA samples. They were then guided to generate heart coherence-a beneficial state of mental, emotional and physical balance and harmony- by using the HeartMath technique that uses heart breathing and intentional positive emotions. The individual successfully completed the task per instruction and was unable to change two of the samples and leave the last intact.
“The results provide experimental evidence to support the hypothesis that aspects of the DNA molecule can be altered through intentionality,” the article states. “The data indicate that when individuals are in a heart-focused, loving state and in a more coherent mode of physiological functioning, they have a greater ability to alter the conformation of DNA.
“Individuals capable of generating high ratios of heart coherence were able to alter DNA conformation according to their intention. … Control group participants showed low ratios of heart coherence and were unable to intentionally alter the conformation of DNA.”
Adding Years to Your Life With Your Thoughts
Dr. Dave Woynarowski, spoke in 2011 at the Longevity Now Conference and stated that telomeres are the parts of human DNA that are similar to a biological time clock that defines our lifespan. They are responsible for all cellular mechanisms, and you can slow them down by doing the following:
1. Slow down the loss of telomeres
2. Add length to the telomeres
Scientific American explained the importance of the theory that implicates how the length of our telomeres determines the length of our life.
‘Telomeres are stretches of DNA that cap our chromosomes and help prevent chromosomal deterioration — biology professors often liken them to the plastic tips on shoelaces. Shortened telomeres aren’t known to cause a specific disease per se, but they do wither with age and are shorter in people with cancer, diabetes, heart disease and high-stress levels. We want our telomeres intact.’
By using mindfulness and meditation, the telomeres can be kept in tact. While studying breast cancer patients and their telomere length, it was discovered that those who practiced such techniques were able to keep their telomeres longer. The group that did not practice meditation had actually had their telomeres shorten.
Furthermore, scientists believe that if we process negative emotions in a healthy way, that we can improve our physical and mental wellbeing. By practicing mindfulness you be more involved in the present moment rather than worrying about the past or future. This allows you to focus on the now so you are able to improve your life.
However, not only do you need to focus on good thoughts, you must also be mindful of bad thoughts. Women who had higher levels of stress, according to the study, also had shorter telomeres. The scientists stated further that, “these findings have implications for understanding how, at the cellular level, stress may promote earlier onset of age-related diseases.”
These findings are beyond groundbreaking, due to the fact that they place your destiny in your hands. They further back claim that psychologists and gurus have been stating for quite awhile, that we must think positive. While thinking positive may not change everything, it will add a higher quality to your life.