Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Recession Proof Your Life...

The Journal of the American Medical Association (2004) Stats tell us that the 3 leading preventable causes of death to North Americans are smoking, obesity and alcohol use and the related illness that result i.e. cardiovascular disease, hypertension, cancer etc.

The National Eating Disorder Association states that 95% of folks who diet, will relapse and regain within 1-5 years. Today’s economic climate has kept many people in Survival mode which is the stress response of fight or flight.

Fear based stress will result in the activation of 1400 known physical and chemical responses in the body releasing stress hormones, increasing blood sugar etc, and if your mind/body believes it’s at war, it will store fat as a protective response to stress and the fear of possible starvation. It’s no wonder people have a difficult time losing and keeping off weight if they haven’t addressed their stress properly!

The question I ask folks is “How long can you run your car at 10,000 RPM… before something breaks down”. The American Institute of Stress tells us that 75-90% of visits to primary care physician’s results from stress related disorders. That’s right, up to 9 out of 10 times that you or your loved one go to the doctor, is due to a stress related illness.

I’m not stating all this to be doom and gloom. I’m stating it to highlight the need for mindfulness and self care, especially during the current economic climate with layoffs, credit crunch, foreclosures etc. Often the more stress and lack of control people feel toward their circumstances, the more they tend to resort to self-soothing, often in destructive ways by grabbing the pack of cigarettes, the tub of ice cream, hitting the bottle etc. Short term gain, long term pain as this form of “self-medicating” will ultimately make things worse, more stressful and more out of control.

As you probably know, the lower your bank account, usually the higher the experience of stress…. it is also important to realize that your “human accounts”, your health… physical health, or physical bank account, your mental account, spiritual, emotional and relational accounts need to be replenished. The lower these human accounts of your life are… the greater the stress and more overwhelmed you will feel as something may come along and “break your bank”.

This internationally awarded “All Addictions Life Recovery Program” ( is a program that will show you how to keep your “human accounts” topped up; how to find a greater sense of balance and self control during these times of uncertainty and how to recession proof your life and health.

In keeping with our commitment of improving the lives of others, given the challenge of today’s economic uncertainty… the Life Recovery Program is providing a “pay what you can” option.

Best of health and warmest regards, Paul Radkowski

Monday, March 2, 2009

Stress & Self Destruction

Many people don’t realize that the stress in our lives can cause us to cope by using a variety of not so healthy things, to soothe ourselves, to try to make ourselves feel better. Life is stress and yet for many, how to manage it, has become something that not only destroys the stressed person’s life but also those closest to that person.

Did you know that some folks try to deal with their stress through such things as drinking, shopping, cutting, drugs, porn, gambling or even eating too much or too little? Many people, especially women are familiar with the notion of “emotional eating.” However, managing stress in this way can lead to disordered eating which may lead to a variety of health problems either now or in future. Sadly, from a very young age, many are taught that when you’re hurting, a cookie will make you feel better, while others have learned over time, that toxic relationships, the Internet/porn, gaming or other destructive behaviours are ways to help “not feel” the emotional pain caused by the stress or even trauma in their lives.

Other ways that people destructively cope with stress or trauma may be by using drugs, sex, cutting (to stop the emotional pain or, somehow feel alive) alcohol, gambling, excessive shopping, angry outbursts or any number of things to try to help themselves feel better and/or release bottled up emotions. None of these things have any long lasting healing effect on the feelings caused be chronic stress or a traumatic past, which is why the behaviour continues and for some gets worse.

Many of us are unaware of the destructive nature of our habits, they sneak up on us so suddenly. Often times it takes someone close to us to tell us that what we’re doing is pretty destructive. Most people don’t realize that such behaviours can be defined as addictive patterns of behaviour. That’s right, an addiction, hard to believe but it is true.

Best of health and warmest regards, Paul Radkowski