Keeping our hearts strong and healthy involves physical care as well as emotional and spiritual care. Our physical care includes eating right for our type, taking targeted and specific supplements that support cardiovascular health and getting regular exercise. These three elements provide the cornerstone for healthy heart function and are an essential investment in our long-term health and well-being. As Peter wrote in the Cardiovascular Book, “Your heart is an amazingly resilient organ. Alexis Carrel, the famous experimental biologist who received the 1912 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine, concluded that, given an optimum supply of nutrients and oxygen, the heart is capable of functioning perfectly for over two centuries.”* Two centuries. Take some time and ponder that!
Equally important is emotional and spiritual care of the heart. Our hearts symbolize our emotional feelings, whether they are love as in the expression, “My heart is filled with love for you,” or with emptiness or lack of joy, as in “I just don’t have the heart for this.” It is important in our heart care to develop an inner dialogue with our hearts and feelings so that we don’t submerge or stuff down emotions that can eventually constellate in illness or cause us to not fully express ourselves.
By cultivating an inner dialogue with ourselves, we can stay current with our feelings, identify issues before they become bigger than they need to, and insure that we expressing ourselves fully and authentically in our lives.
Taking time to regularly check in with our “hearts” is important. I have found it very helpful at the end of the day before I go to sleep to do a quick review of the day. Did I get done everything I needed to? Did I say everything I needed to say? What were those things that made me happy and joyful? Where there any sadnesses, any frustrations that are still unresolved? How am I am feeling about this? By cultivating an inner dialogue with ourselves, we can stay current with our feelings, identify issues before they become bigger than they need to, and insure that we expressing ourselves fully and authentically in our lives.
Over the years this nighttime process has taken on the form of a nightly meditation. Once I settle in to bed, and close my eyes, I take three deep cleansing breaths, each one relaxing me a little bit more. Beginning at my feet, I work my way up my body…relax my feet, feel them melt into the bed, relax my ankles and calves, release any tension, I am holding in these areas and let it melt away. I continue all the way up my body, and when I am finished, I focus on my heart, breathing in and out, aware of the heartbeat, aware of the blood flowing throughout my body. I surround my heart with a golden light, picturing this in my mind’s eye. The light pulses in rhythm with my heart, and with each breath, it grows bigger…bigger than my body, the bed, the room, the house, the town, the state, the country, the world, the universe. Infinite light, connecting me to the universe and the universe back to me.
I give thanks for my life and those I love, I send thoughts of loving kindness to those in need, and I relax deeper into the light.
Some nights, this is a quick review; other nights, I fall asleep midway through it! And still others, it takes me a long time to reflect on the issues of the day that may be hanging on or bothering me. When this occurs, I try to isolate as best as I can what the issue is so that I can bring my attention to it in the morning and get is resolved.
I have found this “clearing” of the day very helpful as it allows me to relax and let go of all the “doingness” of the day and just be, breathing in and out, fully relaxing, fully feeling and fully releasing. It makes for a better night’s sleep and a “light heart!”
*Excerpt from Cardiovascular Disease: Fight It With The Blood Type Diet by Peter J. D’Adamo (with Catherine Whitney) , NY: Berkeley Books, 2004, p. 17