Nikki lewis hw 420 unit 5 project


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Mental Fitness

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Nikki lewis hw 420 unit 5 project

  1. 1. Mental FitnessNikki Lewis HW 420-01 Kaplan University Professor May September 25, 2011
  2. 2. What is Mental Fitness? An Olympic Athlete can have top physical and mental fitness Being able to train the mind to be positive, spiritual and lose the negative thoughts Be stronger, healthier and to prevent memory loss or dementia in life High reaches of human flourishing ban be explored by training our minds Permanently enhance our well-being by altering the brain’s neural circuitry
  3. 3. Mind/Body Connection Mind/body approach recognizes role of anxiety, stress and other mental factors in the development, perpetuation and recurrence of illness (Dacher, 2006) Positive state of well-being-sense of inner control, competence and self-confidence
  4. 4. Dr. Richard Davidson Began studies at University of Wisconsin-Madison Dr. Davidson began studying the minds of Olympic Level athletes Studied the electrical activity of brain and metabolic activity of the athlete Compared people who were disturbed by negative emotions vs. positive well-being We are able to “re-train” our minds to be more positive
  5. 5. Dr. Richard Davidson Looked at left side and right side brain activation and how it can shift from one to the other Happiness or contentment-left side will be dominant Negative emotions-right side of brain will be dominant While working with athletes, used functional MRI to see activation of left vs. right side of brain Olympians have high activation of left prefrontal cortex- related to positive emotions Mind can undergo permanent change when properly trained Can be transformed from ordinary to exceptional
  6. 6. Dr. Candace Pert 1970’s-filled in the missing link between mind/body Series of natural proteins neuropeptides carry messages back and forth 3rd mind/body communication system Later discovery– Candace Pert and others-thoughts, feelings and visual images can produce specific neuropeptides Alters physiology to reflect specific mental state
  7. 7. Dr. Candace Pert Began the studies at Georgetown University Now witnessing development of new field of neuroscientific research examining the relationships between the mind and the body “The mind is the body, the body is the mind.” The condition of our body is a reflection of our mind A disturbed mind results in a disturbed physiology and a healthy mind results in healthy physiology
  8. 8. quote If we could control, dissipate and transform the negative emotions that occupy our mind, we could simultaneously reverse their deleterious effects on the body (Dacher, 2006)
  9. 9. Dr. Elmer Green and Alyce Green 1970 Menninger Clinic Use of Mental Imagery Mind can affect many physiological functions of our body Biofeedback train our minds to voluntarily control blood pressure, pulse, muscular tension, skin temperature and other activities Autonomic nervous system-controls the automatic physiologic mechanisms of the body such a blood pressure and pulse
  10. 10. Dr. Elmer Green and Alyce Green Central nervous system moves our muscles when we choose. Each system depends on hardwired nerve connections between brain and body
  11. 11. Exercises to improve mentalfitness Anything we do that challenges the mind works the mind Word puzzles-helps to prevent memory loss Sedentary and solitary-not same benefit as physical activity but in short periods does help to improve mental fitness
  12. 12. Exercises to improve mentalfitness Positive relationships-stay engaged with the world and maintain and challenge mental function Live with meaning and purpose-find a passion and be involved. Meet people and remain active Exercise-cardiovascular and strength training inproves mental functioning-enhances memory and improves thinking Diet-proper nutrients not only important to body, but mind as well Meditation/yoga-allows the mind to be clear of thoughts and focus on itself
  13. 13. How to improve mental fitness Meditation- Find a quiet spot to sit comfortably for a few minutes to allow body to relax Allow the thoughts to escape the mind and focus on breathing Allow body to relax and re-center yourself Do this daily to help improve the mind and body
  14. 14. How to improve mental fitnesswith physical exercise Running/walking or swimming are great ways to help the body and mind You can allow the mind to wonder while out enjoying nature Focus on the breathing and allow thoughts to escape the mind during exercise Allow body to become one with the mind
  15. 15. Conclusion Mental fitness is just as important as our physical fitness if not more so We need to keep our minds strong to be able to handle the stressors of our every day lives We want to remain mentally young and youthful for as long as we can There is plenty of research out there to help us explain the importance of mental fitness and the benefits Exercise, diet, meditation and mind games are all important in our daily lives
  16. 16. References Dacher, E. S. (2006). Integral Health The Path to Human Flourishing. Laguna Beach: Basic Health Publications, INC. Green, E., & Green, A. (1975, April). New Age Awareness-A Timely Warning. Retrieved September 25, 2011, from The Society: 5/ot-green.htm Tannen, S. (n.d.). Mental Fitness-exercises for the brain. Retrieved September 25, 2011, from mental fitness: