“I got it from my parents” is a statement we often hear from people trapped in physical or other limitations. People will gracefully sink into a state of gross obesity, diabetes or alcoholism, blaming it on their genes. Everything from bad temper to migraine and heart disease is blamed on ancestors who gave them bad genes. Now science tells us that genes are not an immutable heritage. Like karma everything responds to persistent effort.
The new science of epigenetics indicates that biological mechanisms can actually switch on or switch off these genes. The ‘light switches’ can be turned off and on by our own efforts or efforts of those who nurture us. Regular exercise can turn off the FTO gene which causes obesity. The length of your life line is inversely proportional to the length of your waist line. So do learn some form of movement that changes your apple shape and whittles your waistline. Anything will do – yoga, Bollywood dancing or belly dancing.
Cardiologists across the world now subscribe to Dean Ornish’s view that you can unblock your arteries by changing your life style with the trinity of diet, exercise, and meditation. So put on your walking shoes. Cover territory instead of covering your seat. Walk through your neighborhood, instead of being a mouse potato (you get this by adding a computer to the couch potato).
Stay home and cook your own meals. This can increase your chances of survival in the next ten years by a whopping 47%.
• Get eight hours of sleep
• Eat a good breakfast and a light dinner before 8.00pm
• Drink eight glasses of liquids.
• Include five helpings of colorful fruits and vegetables.
• Keep in touch with five or more close friends
• Build your extended family network
So bring out those skin tight jeans and start working to fit into them. Jeans or genes, you too can alter them with your own efforts.