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Is Worrying About Your Health Making You Sick?

by Debbie Mandel

Daily we are bombarded with new medical information about our health. Much of it is conflicting. As a result, we obsess about eating, drinking and exercising to prevent: cancer, anemia, osteoporosis, diabetes, arthritis, MS, Alzheimer’s, heart disease, gout, gastro-esophogeal reflux, kidney disease, depression, allergies, macular degeneration and old age… We wish we could return to a state of innocence when we used to enjoy our food, feel safe at home, swim contentedly at the beach and not worry about disease. Ironically in those days, we weren’t obese, afflicted with attention deficit disorder, or experiencing panic and anxiety attacks. We have become hyper-educated with an easy access to medical research; anyone can purchase a Physicians Drug Guide and read all the contraindications. Here’s the scenario. We feel just fine, but are curious about heart disease or type 2 diabetes. We go on the internet, research our condition, read all about it, including all the rare symptoms and as a result - worry to death! This negative belief might become our biology. On the other hand by developing a positive mindset and concentrating on what makes us happy, we can grow healthier as a natural byproduct - effortlessly.

Attitude is more important than facts. To feel healthy and energetic we need to have fun. Living more naturally with fewer restrictions releases our trapped spirit. When we are happy, filled with a sense of who we really are, we intuitively gravitate toward good nutrition, exercise, sunshine and relaxation. Most of us over-eat or eat the wrong things, become sedentary and out of balance because our hearts are empty; we have lost our core identity and feel trivialized. However, when we express ourselves fully, creatively and truthfully without the fear of what will other people think, we possess the self-esteem, the personal empowerment, to generate good health. No longer angry or suppressed, we are filled with energy and adventure. By not trying so hard to be healthy which is causing us a great deal of stress, we simply feel better. Here are some suggestions to redirect the focus from too much knowledge and too little spirit to more joyous living:

  • Stop buying luteins, lycopenes, beta carotenes and anti-oxidants in the grocery store. Instead buy fresh fruits and vegetables that you enjoy. Try new exotic ones.
  • Don’t add fiber to your diet. Instead eat hot oatmeal with cinnamon, fresh and crusty six grain bread and fresh crunchy apples.
  • Don’t think about omega 3’s. Instead enjoy fresh fish, the powerful offerings of the sea.
  • Hate exercising? Don’t exercise. Take a walk with your discman playing your favorite songs. Go dancing. Delight in movements that matter.
  • Don’t go outside to get some Vitamin D. Instead feel the warm sun and its energy.
  • Worried about the future? Don’t think about it. Live moment to moment. There is change and new fortune in every moment. If one moment is bad, the next might be good.
  • Feel pressured to meditate? Don’t meditate. Sit under a tree in the park and observe your surroundings, or read a book. Soak in a warm bath with candles.
  • Forgot how to have fun? Go to a playground and watch the children. Sit on a swing and pump your legs.
  • Worried that you don’t laugh much anymore when laughter is the best medicine? Watch comedies or read jokes. However, don’t watch the 11:00PM News.

Debbie Mandel, MA is the author of Turn On Your Inner Light: Fitness for Body, Mind and Soul, a stress-reduction specialist, motivational speaker, a personal trainer and mind/body lecturer at Southampton College. She is the host of the weekly Turn On Your Inner Light Show on WHLI 1100AM in New York City , produces a weekly wellness newsletter, and has been featured on radio/ TV and print media. To learn more visit: