Stress: A Major Cause of Obesity

November 24, 2009 by Michael Wayne  
Filed under Diet And Nutrition, Stress, obesity

Brum_hit_by_obesity_epidemic_399933639I’ve been writing on the theme of obesity for the last few weeks, and will wrap this series up tomorrow. (It’s a short week, what with the Thanksgiving holiday, and so tomorrow’s article will be the last for this week.)

I’ve written about many causes of obesity – diet, chemicals in foods, sugar/high fructose corn syrup, cars.

Another cause of obesity, and a major cause at that, is stress.

Stress-ConfusionChokeStress is a major cause of living a High Density Lifestyle, and a major cause of obesity – that’s why I’ve said throughout this series that being obese can get you trapped in the treadmill of a High Density Lifestyle.

What is it about stress that leads to obesity?

There’s two main reasons: behavioral and physiological.

Behaviorally, stressed-out people will often eat even when they’re not hungry – this is known as stress eating or emotional eating, and the food choices made are usually not the wisest.

Physiologically, there’s a few factors that lead to obesity. One factor is cortisol and cortisol-induced insulin.

When faced with a stressful situation, the body triggers the stress response, the fight-or-flight response. This leads to the secretion of cortisol, adrenaline and other stress hormones along with an increase of blood pressure, breathing and heart rate.

The natural stress response is usually short-term and self-regulating. When the threat is gone, the body returns to normal. As cortisol and adrenaline levels drop, heart rate, respiratory rate and blood pressure, as well as energy levels return to their baseline levels. Other systems inhibited by the stress response return to their regular activities.

stress-copyThe natural stress response goes awry when stress is constant and excessive. In today’s society, most people are inundated with overwhelming stress. For those constantly dealing with excessive and chronic stress, the body’s fight-or-flight response is constantly on. In turn, the resulting stress hormones released are chronically high.

Chronically high levels of cortisol plays a big role in the development of obesity.

Cortisol helps the body handle stress, so when stress goes up, cortisol also goes up. Cortisol stimulates fat and carbohydrate metabolism during stressful situations. This leads to increased blood sugar levels required for fast energy. In turn, this stimulates insulin release which can lead to an increase in appetite.

When the immediate stress is over, cortisol lingers to help bring the body back into balance after stress. One of the ways it gets things back to balance is by increasing appetite to replace the carbohydrate and fat used for the flight or fight response.

The problem is that in today’s society, stress-causing situations — such as traffic jams or computer malfunctions — don’t require the body to use up a lot of energy. So, cortisol ends up causing the body to refuel after stress even when it doesn’t really need to refuel. This excess fuel or glucose is converted into fat, resulting in increased storage of fat.

computer donutWhat makes matters worse is that cortisol-induced high levels of insulin also leads to increased production and storage of fat. This means that exposure to chronically high levels of cortisol and cortisol-induced insulin are major main reasons why stress can lead to increase in body fat and obesity.

Another physiological reason that was found recently for why stress leads to obesity is a molecule that the body releases when stressed called NPY (neuropeptide Y). NPY appears to unlock certain receptors in fat cells, causing them to grow in both size and number.

NPY was discovered by researchers during an experiment in which stressed and unstressed mice were fed either a standard diet or a high-fat, high-sugar, “comfort food” diet.

As expected, the mice on the high-fat, high-sugar diet gained fat while those on the standard diet did not. But researchers found the stressed mice on the high-fat, high-sugar diet developed more body fat than the unstressed mice fed the same diet.

The good news of all this is that stress-induced obesity can be overturned by the learning of simple stress management techniques.

And for that matter, diet-induced obesity can be overturned by the learning of better food habits.

So there is hope!

10 Herbs That Are Good For Stress

stress2Stress is such a major component of so many people’s lives – most people are stressed out to the max.

Stress is not good for the health, as it can cause many health problems. It does not allow you to experience healthy living. And it will also keep you in a High Density Lifestyle mode.

Everyone has stressors of one kind or another in their life. The key is to manage stress and channel it. Yoga, meditation, exercise, walking in the woods, and journaling are some of the ways to enjoy some stress relief.stress-picture-stress-relief-kit

There are also herbs that can help you manage stress. Here are a few of the herbs for stress relief:

1. Licorice Root contains a natural hormone alternative to cortisol, which can help the body handle stressful situations, and can help to normalize blood sugar levels as well as your adrenal glands, providing you with the energy necessary to deal with the stressful situation at hand. Some claim licorice stimulates cranial and cerebrospinal fluid, thereby calming the mind.

Passion Flower

Passion Flower

2. Passion flower is considered a mild sedative and can help promote sleep. Passion flower also treats anxiety, insomnia, depression and nervousness.

3. Kava Kava, an herb from the South Pacific, is a powerful muscle relaxer and analgesic. Kava Kava is also effective at treating depression and anxiety associated with menopause.

4. St. John’s Wort has been used medicinally since Hippocrates time. Even during the Renaissance and Victorian periods it was used for the treatment of mental disorders. Though it presents itself as an unassuming, flowering perennial, St. John’s Wort was shown to be more effective than Prozac, according to a recent study, in treating major depressive disorders.

5. Lavender is effective at reducing irritability and anxiety,

Lavender

Lavender

promoting relaxation, a sense of calm and sleep. It is also a powerful anti-bacterial agent, and can work to balance hormones and stimulate the immune system.

While lavender can be consumed in a tea, it may work best as an essential oil that is breathed in by way of a diffuser or, in the case of stress and sleeplessness, an eye pillow.

6. Valerian calms people who are agitated, but stimulates those who feel fatigued, according to one Italian study. During World War II, the British used Valerian tincture to treat nerves shattered during bombing raids on London.

7. Ginseng and Siberian Ginseng can help you handle stress by sedating or stimulating your central nervous system, according to your body’s needs. Studies conducted in China showed that Ginseng also increases your brain’s utilization of amino acids, which is important because when you are under stress, your body uses more protein than usual.

Schizandra

Schizandra

8. Schizandra has a regulating effect on the central nervous system. Studies show that this herb quickens responses and makes people more alert while actually stimulating the nervous system. A 1983 study conducted in China showed that Schizandra relieves headaches, insomnia and dizziness and calms a racing heart. It has also been reported to control anger and aggression.

9. Skullcap was originally a Native American herb traditionally taken for menstrual problems. Today, it is mostly used as a tonic and sedative for nerves in times of stress. It helps to support and nourish the nervous system, and calms and relieves stress and anxiety. It can also be used when stress leads to muscular tension and pain.

10. Lemon Balm has a long tradition as a tonic remedy

Lemon Balm

Lemon Balm

that raises the spirits and comforts the heart. It is widely valued for its calming properties. 17th century British writer John Evelyn wrote that Lemon Balm “is sovereign for the brain, strengthening the memory and powerfully chasing away melancholy.”

So there you have it – 10 herbs that can help you with stress and calm your spirits. These are all great tools to manage stress, give you stress relief, and help assist you in living a Low Density Lifestyle.

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How Well Do You Sleep?

April 10, 2009 by Michael Wayne  
Filed under Low Density Lifestyle, Relaxation, Stress

Now, She is a Great Sleeper! Do you sleep as well as that?

(Please note: YouTube has embedded ads in the video. If you don’t want to see them, below the video on the right it says “Ads by Google” and then there’s a little box with an “X” in it. Just click the “X” and it will shut off the ads.)

One of the signs of being stressed out is not sleeping well. Sleeping well is crucial to relaxation, stress management and healthy living.

Many people have trouble sleeping. They use all kinds of sleep aids/medications to help them. But taking drugs for sleep is not an answer if you’re interested in health and wellness. The answer is learning good stress management approaches.

Do you have trouble falling asleep, or do you have trouble staying asleep? If so, the stress if getting to you.

If you want to have stress management and experience stress relief, then review the articles on 30 Ways to Relax Part 1 and Part 2. The suggestions on ways to relax are also relevant for ways to help you sleep.

The ideal is to sleep like a baby. To hit the pillow and be out like a light. Then you know you have no worries, you have good stress relief techniques, and you’re well on your way to healthy living.

Sleeping well also keeps you in the land of The Low Density Lifestyle.

If you want to see some really good sleepers, see the video above and check out the pictures below for some uncanny good sleepers.

Nighty-night to all!! See you in the the land of dreams!1742883218_56b529cb6f1742023451_54564572512092390485_4b54b01fec2092410691_28ba4345fc12093188998_6020f0828c2092410461_e9d7dc8cb81819818626_a404cb2763

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1768871773_4746dd6eef2
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Why Play is Good For You

Dr. Stuart Brown on Why Play is Vital – No Matter Your Age

I talked yesterday about play and relaxation, and how conducive play is to relaxation, stress relief and healthy living.  Today’s article is a video from a May 2008 talk by Dr. Stuart Brown.

A pioneer in research on play, Dr. Stuart Brown says humor, games, roughhousing, flirtation and fantasy are more than just fun. Plenty of play in childhood makes for happy, smart adults — and keeping it up can make us smarter at any age.

Dr. Stuart Brown came to research play through research on murderers — unlikely as that seems — after he found a stunning common thread in killers’ stories: lack of play in childhood. Since then, he’s interviewed thousands of people to catalog their relationships with play, noting a strong correlation between success and playful activity.

With the support of the National Geographic Society and Jane Goodall, he has observed animal play in the wild, where he first conceived of play as an evolved behavior important for the well being — and survival — of animals, especially those of higher intelligence. Now, through his organization, the National Institute for Play, he hopes to expand the study of human play into a vital science — and help people everywhere enjoy and participate in play throughout life.

Play allows us as adults to stay in touch with the child within. And when you lose that child within, you lose spontaneity, creativity, joy and happiness.

So keep playing, you hear? You’ll definitely find stress relief by playing, and you’ll definitely feel like you’re experiencing healthy living .

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Want to Relax? Then Go and Play!

boy_playing_water_smallOver the last two days I told you about 30 Ways to Relax, Part 1 and Part 2. Another way to relax and have stress relief is to let loose, have fun and Play!

When we think of play we think of kids, because we believe that kids should have time to play. But we forget that kids aren’t the only ones who need to play—we tend to think that as adults, we should forget our childish ways and be serious and not play.

Wow, what a boring way to live. And also, what a stressful way to live. No play = living a High Density Lifestyle. No play, no stress relief. No play, no joy.  And no play, no health and wellness, for that matter either.

Play is necessary, no matter your age. Play is so important, in fact, that Dutch historian Johan Huizinga (1872-1945) once described it as the defining characteristic of our species. For Huizinga, humanity is notable not as Homo sapiens, “wise people,” but Homo ludens, “playful people.”

So, what is play good for?

Absolutely everything, as it turns out.

Play is good for healthy living. Play helps manage stress, easing us into relaxation mode. Play releases1160564___soccer__ a whole range of beneficial brain chemicals, which not only make play fun but relieves tension and allows for stress relief.

Play opens up your mind and allows you to think different. Play stimulates the brain in nonlinear ways, causing your creative intelligence to be heightened. This changes the way you see things and allows you to think different. In this mindset, nothing is just what it seems – things take on new forms, problems seem not just solvable but trivial, and we feel empowered to take on the world.

Play unites the mind and body.  In play, the gap between physical sensation and mental sensation is bridged, as both your mind and body enter into heightened states of awareness. As the mind is stimulated from play, so is the body, and as the body is stimulated from play, so is the mind. It becomes a two-way street, and play helps to make you more in touch with yourself.

svillagekidsplayingPlay creates social bonds. When you play with others, a bond arises from it. You don’t think about what your differences are and let that get between you – instead you form a camaraderie due to your commonalities. Play unites us as humans – everyone likes to play, and so we bond over it.

Children bond with other children quickly, and the bond is based on playing. “Can you come out and play?” is the common refrain one child will ask another.

So when’s the last time you played?  I mean, really, really played. You know, having fun, letting loose, blowing off steam type of play. Not play in which you work out your tensions and aggressions at the expense of someone else, but good, old-fashioned play that’s fun and is a meaningful manner of stress relief.

When you find that kind of play, that’s when you really feel like you’re living a Low Density Lifestyle and you’re on the path of health and wellness.

If you’re not sure where to start, try this: Stand in front of a mirror, and make really ridiculous faces. Turn mccain-funny-faceyour eyelids out, stick your tongue out, snort, chuckle, and make weird noises. Truly embarrass yourself.  That’s right, really make a fool of yourself.

We all need to lighten up.  Being serious, heavy and dense all or most of the time isn’t good.  When you’re like that, you’re caught up in the High Density Lifestyle mode and taking life way too seriously. Chances are when you’re like that, you’re also getting stressed out way too easy.

So, now you know how to manage stress and find stress relief and start on the path to healthy living: Go out and play!

And actually, by making time to play, you become better at dealing with all the serious stuff in your life. You’ll feel better, be more relaxed, have better health and wellness, and enjoy more creativity – and all this will help make the rest of your life better.

And you know why?  Cause then you’ll be living a Low Density Lifestyle.

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30 Ways to Relax: Part 2

relaxIn yesterday’s article, I told you about 15 of the 30 ways to relax. In today’s article, I will tell you about another 15 ways to relax.

All told, if you put any of these into practice, it will give you much stress relief and give you a chance to experience healthy living.

And it will also help you live a Low Density Lifestyle.

I don’t know about you, but any opportunity to manage stress and have stress relief is fine by me. I’m sure you would agree with me.

So let’s go down the list and find out about more ways to relax and experience some healthy living.

Ok, so here we go with 30 Ways To Relax. Today, numbers 16 – 30.

16. Breathe. Breath is such a vital part of being able to relax and find your inner stillness. Try practicing breatheslow and deep breathing for a 10 count: deeply inhaling and then exhaling, slowly and calmly. The more you do this, the more it becomes second nature. This will allow you to easily relax and slow down at any point.

17. Lavender. Lavender is an essential oil that is prized for its soothing and relaxing effects. Try spraying your bedsheets with lavender and laying down on them.

yoga-cat18. Yoga. Whether you are naturally flexible or find yourself tight and stiff when you try and do yoga, is not important. What is important is how calming and relaxing yoga can be. You owe it to yourself to do it.

19. Meditation. Sitting still and emptying the mind will slow your body down and allow it to enter into a state of stillness and quiet.

20. Basking in the Sun. Whether at a beach, a lake, or in your backyard, feeling the sun’s energy beating into your body can be very relaxing. Just make sure you’re wearing enough sunscreen. An additional treat is if you’re at the beach, then you can listen to the sound of the waves crashing as the tide comes in.

21. Walking in nature. Being in nature is very invigorating, quieting, soothing and relaxing. Next time you’re feeling stressed out, if you get yourself immersed in nature you will find yourself decompressing in no time.

22. Fishing. This one is for those of you who like to fish – though there’s always a first time to get into it. Fishing is something that teaches you patience. It’s just you, your pole and the water, and you just wait and wait until something happens. Or it might be that nothing happens. But it can be very relaxing and soothing.

23. Vegetable Gardening. Gardening has many rewards, and one of them is how it can focus and quiet vegetable_garden_tomatoyour mind, and keep you involved in the cycles of the seasons. Each season has its own energy, and gardening can help you to feel more in harmony with the seasons.

24. Unclutter Your Living Space. If you allow clutter to take over your home, it can make you stressed out. Cleaning up the clutter and making order can create much more calm in your home.

25. Listen to Relaxing Music. Sure, it’s fun to rock out, and of course, as the famous saying goes, music soothes the savage soul. But to allow you to get deep-rooted stress relief, it’s best to listen to music that is calming and soothing. It can be classical, jazz, or some other melodic music. Or perhaps your relaxation will come from you playing on an instrument.

26. Do something creative. Write a poem, paint, play with clay, take photos, bang on a can, etc. Doing something creative can feed your soul. And by so doing, your soul will breathe a little easier and release any pent-up tensions and frustrations.

27. Just Say No. Create boundaries by saying no to other’s demands and requests. This allows you to not take on any more responsibilities and burdens, and allows you to take time for yourself.

28. Say Yes. Sex is very relaxing.

29. Tell Someone You Love Them. By doing this, it opens up your heart and allows your body to relax and let go.

24dog_and_cat130. Pet Your Dog or Cat. While you stroke your pet, tell them about all the stresses you are going through. Because they’re your pet, they love you unconditionally, so they’ll listen to you and always be there for you.

So that’s it for the 30 ways to relax. There are lots of other ways, and it might be that you have your own best way. Whatever that is, go for it and remember the more you relax and find stress relief, the more you will be on the path of healthy living and living a Low Density Lifestyle.

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30 Ways to Relax: Part 1

relax__stdLast week I was discussing stress – what stress is, stress and teenagers, 10 warning signs, and a video of life in the High Density Lifestyle lane.

This week I will talk about the opposite of stress: Relaxation. When you relax, you manage stress better and you get outstanding stress relief.  If you relax well enough, you get yourself into the Low Density Lifestyle mode.  And you also get yourself in the mode of feeling FREE.

Relaxation is such an important part of life, and it is something that cultivates healthy living.  Relaxation recharges the batteries, restores energy reserves and allows you to be healthier, happier and live a better quality life.

So, how good at relaxing are you?

In today and tomorrow’s articles, I will give you 30 different things you can do that will allow you to relax. Once you start implementing some or all of these, you will feel lighter and you will be living more in the Low Density Lifestyle.

Don’t forget: relaxation will help you to manage stress and give you stress relief, and will help you have a greater sense of health and wellness.

So, here we go with 30 Ways To Relax. Today, numbers 1 – 15.

1. Complete Your Project. Whatever it is you’re working on, if you don’t have much more to go on it, it’s better to finish it than to keep thinking about it when you should be relaxing. Don’t start another big project that you know you won’t finish, until after you’ve completed your relaxing, in order to keep your mind on the present.

2. Massage, Sauna, & Hot Bath. When was the last time you rewarded yourself with the gift of spa_massage_mastheadrelaxation by taking time out to concentrate on blissful restfulness? Get a one-hour massage, sit in a wet sauna for awhile, or make yourself a bath at home while listening to some nice and relaxing music.

3. Beat Your Tension Out. Beat the tension out at the gym, on the treadmill, or with the punching bag. You can do this without music or accompanied by some high-intensity music that will get your heart pumping. This might not sound too relaxing at first, but once you’re done exercising and the endorphins have overtaken your mind, you’ll be nothing short of relaxed.

4. Block the Time Out. In order to alleviate guilt about taking the time off, go ahead and schedule in a block of time during which you can hang loose, and not worry about anything. This way your mind knows it can chill, and that when the time comes you can get back to 100% efficiency.

5. Turn Off Distractions. Turn off your phone, door bell, computer, internet connection and anything else that can distract you. If no one can reach you it’s fine, they can always leave a message or call you later.

6. Dress for Relaxing. If you’re going to relax, do so in the right clothes. Sweat pants, pajamas, and loose hoodies are perfect to lounge around in.

7. Get ‘Extra’ Clean. We’ve all slothed around on a weekend morning without showering. We’re supposed to be relaxing, and no one is going to see or smell us anyway, right? Wrong! Before you set out on a day of relaxation, make sure you get extra clean, shower, shave, brush, floss, rinse, and put on clean clothes. You’ll feel like a million bucks!

chimp-drinking-tea8. Drink Soothing Tea With No Caffeine. Have a nice cup of herbal tea, and sit with a good book or mood music.

9. Journal. Carry a journal with you during your relaxation time, and write whatever is on your mind. You might come up with some great insights or ideas, or maybe you’ll write poetry. It might be a work-related thought you have, which you’ll be able to jot down so that you can stop thinking about it for now.

10. Write. Write a story about your life, or a piece of fiction – writing can be very relaxing.

11. Release Your Tension. If there’s a problem and it’s on your mind, don’t let it get you all bound up. Get out your journal and start writing. Feel free to vent, and write down exactly what’s wrong. When you’re done, toss what you wrote into the scrap heap, and with it the stress.

12. Visualization Exercises. Without ever having to go anywhere, you can visualize anything you want or any place you want. It can be a white sand beach, snow-capped mountain, fjords and streams, and on the other end of the universe. Sit down, close your eyes, and let your mind wander wherever it wants to go. Put on nice relaxing music if that helps you get in the mood.

13. Giving Appreciation. Take the time to think about people in your life that deserve appreciation and gratitude. You can write them a letter, or send them a card. When you do this, write it from your heart.

14. Bake. Baking can be a pleasurable and meditative experience, and can fill your house with wonderful bakingsmells. And of course, once it’s baked, you can eat it!

15. Read a Novel. Find a novel that you know will be interesting and intriguing, and delve into it, letting it take you into another world.

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Ever Have One of Those High Density Lifestyle Days?

Ever have one of those high stress, High Density Lifestyle days?

A day where everything is going in fast motion, going by in a blur at what seems like faster than the speed of light.

It’s a day where you are not getting any stress relief, a day that is definitely not one where you’re experiencing healthy living.

It’s definitely not a Low Density Lifestyle day.

In the above video, you may recognize yourself in there and you may see some or all of the 10 signs that you’re living a High Density Lifestyle.

I hope that’s not you.

The video is good for a lot of laughs, and that by itself will give you stress relief and help you manage stress.

But all in all, if you ever have one of those High Density Lifestyle days, it’s time to slow down, relax, manage stress, and get back on the track of health and wellness, and of healthy living in general.

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10 Warning Signs That You’re Stressed Out

April 2, 2009 by Michael Wayne  
Filed under High Density Lifestyle, Stress

stressedI’ve been talking the last few days about stress – it’s a huge factor that blocks you from living a Low Density Lifestyle.

Stress is all about living life in the fast lane – which is the High Density Lifestyle lane – but the unfortunate thing is that most people, when they’re stressed, don’t even recognize that they are, or what the stress is doing to them – they’re totally incapable of stress management.

So today I want to give you 10 warning signs that you’re stressed out.  Please take heed, and if you find you recognize yourself in this, start working on making changes, so that you can experience some stress relief.

1. Forgetfulness. Stress will short-circuit your memory, and cause you to be unfocused.

2. Irrational thinking. When you are stressed, your thinking is not always rational, and it is hard to think clearly. Small challenges can then become huge obstacles.

3. Easily feeling anger, anxiety, irritability and fear. Stress can cause your feelings to spiral out of angercontrol. You may start having anxiety and panic attacks over things that usually are easy for you to deal with.  You may also become easily angered or irritable at the slightest provocation, or perhaps at no provocation whatsoever.

4. Impulsive behavior. You may do things on a whim, without thinking about the consequences.

5. Tendency to make mistakes. You may forget something, leave it behind, or overlook details that you normally would have considered.

6. Headaches, backache, joint or muscle pain. Stress can express itself by causing you to have pain and other physical ailments. It’ll be hard to live a healthy lifestyle when you can’t manage stress.

7. Difficulty in falling asleep. Sleep problems affects many people, and stress and anxiety is the number one cause of that.  Stress makes it difficult to wind down and drift off to sleep.

8. Shallow breathing and tightness in the chest. Many a person has gone to the emergency room thinking they are having a heart attack, when instead it is just the stress and anxiety affecting them in a big way, causing tightness in the chest and shallow breathing.

9. Weakened immune system. When you are stressed, it is easier to develop a cold, fever, flu, sore throat, sinus infection, and other types of infections.

10.  Women’s health issues.  Stress can cause women to have pain during menstruation, irregular periods, PMS, fibroids, and other women’s health issues.

The key with stress is that everyone has stressors in their life—there are certain things outside of our control that happen to us.  But it’s your relationship to the stressor: do you let yourself become overwhelmed by the stressors to the point that some or all of the above warning signs manifest, or do you allow yourself to stay calm, roll with the punches and take things as they come?

If you become more self-aware and more mindful of your actions and reactions to stressful situations, you can become less affected by the stressors because then you are practicing stress management.

kittyIt also is important to make sure you are taking the time to relax, whether by going for a walk, exercising, being still, or whatever works for you to give you stress relief.

The more you relax, stay calm and stay in the groove, the more of a Low Density Lifestyle will you live, allowing you to live a healthy lifestyle and be in the land of health and wellness.

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Happy April Fool’s Day!!!!

The Great Spaghetti Harvest of 1957

What’s one of the best holidays for curing stress and giving you stress relief? Why, April Fool’s Day of course!

A good April Fool’s Day joke will make you laugh, and laughter makes you feel lighter of body, mind and spirit, and by so doing, will lighten your load and help you feel less stressed and more in the Low Density Lifestyle mode.

And so, in the spirit of April Fool’s Day, here are five of the most classic April Fool jokes and pranks:

The Great Spaghetti Harvest of 1957

The respected BBC news show Panorama announced in 1957 that thanks to a very mild winter and the virtual elimination of the dreaded spaghetti weevil, Swiss farmers were enjoying a bumper spaghetti crop. It accompanied this announcement with footage of Swiss peasants pulling strands of spaghetti down from trees. Many viewers called the BBC wanting to know how they could grow their own spaghetti tree. To this the BBC diplomatically replied, “place a sprig of spaghetti in a tin of tomato sauce and hope for the best.”

Wisconsin State Capitol Collapses in 1933

statedome_smThe Madison Capital-Times solemnly announced that the Wisconsin state capitol building lay in ruins following a series of mysterious explosions. The explosions were attributed to “large quantities of gas, generated through many weeks of verbose debate in the Senate and Assembly chambers.” Accompanying the article was a picture showing the capitol building collapsing.

Australia Converts to Metric Time in 19751975metrictime1

Australia’s This Day Tonight news program revealed that the country would soon be converting to “metric time.” Under the new system there would be 100 seconds to the minute, 100 minutes to the hour, and 20-hour days. Furthermore, seconds would become millidays, minutes become centidays, and hours become decidays. The report included an interview with Deputy Premier Des Corcoran who praised the new time system. The Adelaide townhall was even shown sporting a new 10-hour metric clock face.

The Greatest Baseball Pitcher Ever

In 1985, Sports Illustrated published a story about a new rookie pitcher who planned to play for the Mets. His name was Sidd Finch, and he could reportedly throw a baseball at 168 mph with pinpoint accuracy. This was 65 mph faster than the previous record. Surprisingly, Sidd Finch had never even played the game before. Instead, he had mastered the “art of the pitch” in a Tibetan monastery under the guidance of the “great poet-saint Lama Milaraspa.” Mets fans celebrated their teams’ amazing luck at having found such a gifted player, and Sports Illustrated was flooded with requests for more information. In reality this legendary player only existed in the imagination of the author of the article, George Plimpton.

Planetary Alignment Decreases Gravity in 1976

01alignmentThe British astronomer Patrick Moore announced on BBC Radio 2 that at 9:47 AM a once-in-a-lifetime astronomical event was going to occur that listeners could experience in their very own homes. The planet Pluto would pass behind Jupiter, temporarily causing a gravitational alignment that would counteract and lessen the Earth’s own gravity. Moore told his listeners that if they jumped in the air at the exact moment that this planetary alignment occurred, they would experience a strange floating sensation. When 9:47 AM arrived, BBC2 began to receive hundreds of phone calls from listeners claiming to have felt the sensation. One woman even reported that she and her eleven friends had risen from their chairs and floated around the room.

I hope these April Fool’s Day pranks gives you a few laughs and some stress relief, and at the same time gets you feeling lighter of body and mind and less in the High Density Lifestyle mode.

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