Now before you jump into any hasty conclusions on what that title meant, let me clarify on this easy life hack.
A 10 second hug a day may fight infections, boost your immune system, ease depression and lessen fatigue.
A 20 second hug reduces harmful physical effects of stress including its impact on your blood pressure and heart rate.
Hugging increases levels of the hormone oxytocin, which is the true cause for all the benefits listed above.
Now don’t go hugging random people at work or at the airport because I recommended it. These hugs have a magical impact if they come from someone you trust and truly love. It is suggested that you need 4 hugs a day for survival, 8 hugs for maintenance and 12 hugs for growth.
Oxytocin is a neuropeptide, released by your pituitary gland, a naturally occurring hormone in your body with incredibly powerful, health-giving properties. It is also called as the love hormone because levels of oxytocin increase during hugging and orgasms.
But why am I telling you all this? Knowledge is nothing till you apply it. So how does one use this magic hormone?
Here are a few ways you can harness this bliss drug –
- If you have a tantrum-throwing child, who is taking every ounce of energy to manage, just drop all that you are doing and give the child a long lingering hug. It works like magic!
- If you have had a long hard day and are craving sweets, alcohol or smoke then meet a friend or family member and share a pat on the back, a good handshake or a nice warm hug to feel the stress melting away.
- If you have a suffering sex life, just agree to hold hands and hug more often. You’ll fin the romance creeping in slowly.
- Have a sick or unwell person in the family? Just keep hugging them more and this will decrease their recovery time, helping them heal faster.
The beauty of this, is that, it benefits both sides, the giver and the receiver. The bonding between a mother and child is strengthened by hugging and those children have a steadier growth. Oxytocin also increases empathy and generosity which wouldn’t really make us human otherwise.
But there is a caveat here, a hug from a stranger can increase stress & anxiety. It can also forge some bad memories. It can create opposite feelings if you are cast out of a group. So, it may not be the perfect drug but it’s as perfect as can be.
Irrespective of the obvious, there are some added benefits of hugging –
- Showing appreciation
- Stimulating dopamine (the pleasure hormone) and serotonin for elevated mood
- Cultivating patience
- Balancing out your nervous system for better parasympathetic balance
- Activating the solar plexus chakra which stimulates your thymus gland, which may help balance production of white blood cells
In a digital disconnected world, we starve on physical touch. Except for the times we engage in a team sport, or are newly in love or are a newly anointed parent, we don’t use hugging as effectively. It doesn’t cost a thing but has a zillion benefits.
If you are in a toxic relationship (at work, at home, in your social life) any amount of effort on eating healthy, exercising won’t yield the results you’re looking for.
Being in a happy and healthy relationship is primary food. If you can’t fix it, you can’t fix your health.
Living healthy is a holistic process. So ditch that unhealthy craving and gift yourself a hug today. You need it as much as the rest of the world does.
To know more about healing techniques, get in touch at www.ctrlaltzen.com.