Have you ever heard the phrase, “sitting is the new smoking”? This phrase was coined primarily in response to lack of movement with extended periods of sitting and the negative effects on the cardiovascular and metabolic systems.
Heart disease and diabetes aside, poor posture has a major influence on the feelings you experience and moods you find yourself in throughout the day. How does something as miniscuel as my sitting position have an effect on my mood and reflect on my health- you might be asking.
Before we get into the nitty-gritty of that question, let’s look at some truths: 1) Humans as a species are becoming ‘forward-learners’. We get in our cars and drive to work in a forward-leaning, seated position. Sit all day at a desk. Drive home, and proceed to sit on the couch for the remainder of the evening while scrolling through netflix. If we’re lucky and feeling motivated enough we’re able to squeeze in a morning or afternoon workout. 2) Anatomically, the flexor muscles (cervical flexors, pectorals, hip flexors) of the body dominate over the extensors (Rhomboids, Lower Trapezius, Hamstrings) creating a slouched and guarded position. Finally, 3) The brain (our computer system) communicates with the body via the spinal cord and the nerves that innervate every muscle, joint, tissue and cell in the body. The brain is also the center of all our thoughts, feelings and emotions.
What body postures do you think of when you think about; sadness, shame, guilt, stress? What about the feeling you get when you say something you regret? What is your posture like right this moment just after reading these words? What about; excitement, joy, proud and enthusiastic? Our feelings, thoughts and emotions often dictate how we appear in the world. For example, when you look at someone and know instantly that there is something wrong. This is how we read body language. Furthermore, more and more studies are being conducted around the brain and its relationship to our mental and overall health. These studies have shown that the brain and body connection is not a one way street. While it may be true that you are sitting with poor posture because of low energy, you may have low energy because you’re sitting with poor posture. Body language plays a huge role in how we communicate with the world as well as ourselves.
So what’s the relationship between chiropractic and your mood? The answer is; Posture! Not only does getting adjusted have a direct affect on the structural posture of the body, but getting adjusted regularly stimulates the joint to reinforce good posture and reeducates the neurology- increasing your awareness and making it easier to be more cognisant of your daily body positions.
Thoughts, traumas and toxins are the three primary factors in our life when it comes to health and disease. The thoughts we carry about our body's ability to heal can make all the difference, whether you are battling cancer or an ankle sprain (most people BELIEVE they can heal from an ankle sprain). So do what your mother used to say and “sit up straight when you..” are alone with your thoughts or interacting with others. Because it can make a big difference in your health goals.