R.V. Doon

Advice From Rats: Change Your Genes

Ever wonder if some of the war mongers among us missed a critical nurture function as babies? Do you ever wonder if they were hugged?

Ever feel the need to call your children and apologize for all the bad karmic debt you bestowed from your genes?

Ever want to confront your parents on how you were raised?

Well, the rats have given us a story, one scientists have examined and published, and from this study a new pill will emerge, but until then new parents have a story to consider. If you’re stressed out, and so was your mom, end the cycle or do your best by pulling ideas from the rats. Either blame your parents for life or change the cycle for your kids.

Basically, before we cracked the DNA code, we were told we were stuck with our genes for better or worse. Now, we know diet and licking our offspring can change the expression of our genes. Yeah, I said licking.

Low stress rat moms lick their offspring often and they “smother” them which is rat speak for cuddling.  Rat moms who lick and smother produce healthy, normal rats in both male and females. The females pass this loving behavior on to their newborns. Yea, a crack in the stress cycle that swamps the body in cortisol.

High stress rat moms don’t lick as much nor do they smother their pups. Stressed rat moms produce fearful, worried offspring. I’m suggesting in human terms these are the folks who see a terrorist under every rock, instead of considering the effects of never-ending war on society.

Then scientists took babies of the non-stressed mother rats and gave them to the stressed mother rats to raise. Guess what? These pups became like the rat mother who raised them. Stressed out and aggressive.

My takeaway: Humans respond to voice, touch, smell. These are human cuddling(smothering) behaviors. To nurture babies and to raise kind non-stressed children, read and talk to them in the womb and rub your belly while doing so. When your baby is born, continue spending more time holding them naked against your bare chest. Baby massage is a great idea too, but make this regular not a weekend event. Humans aren’t born wearing clothes and the skin is the biggest sensory organ we have. I think the key is frequency because of course you do this, but can you do so more often? The key is to combine the behavior with a diet high in methyl donor foods.

Scientists believe eating methyl donor foods and taking the supplements seen in maternal vitamins can turn on the stress lowering mechanism the same as the licking and cuddling behaviors. This means mothers and infants can reduce stress through “cuddling behaviors and a thoughtful diet.” People who’ve raised their children can still change their own gene expression through diet. Here is a list of foods to consider. One day there will be a ‘nurture supplement”, but don’t forget the cuddling and smothering.



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