Why it's healthier to sit down to family meals together with classical music in the background
Food with family is strong medicine. So is relaxing or motivational music that enhances concentration while you eat or even when you choose what foods to cook or buy for each meal.
Here's how they work in tandem to enhance memory and digestion along with conversation and body language. The family that eats together speaks together. If you want to try something new and very ancient, try neurotechnology through music.
Food is love. Family problems? See the Advanced Brain Technologies site, featured in the State of the Brain Fitness Software Market 2009 Report, published May 4, 2009. Check out the Brain Fitness Authority site called, "Sharp Brains." They offer a newsletter and a guide to brain fitness. See their Brain Fitness and Cognitive Health June 2009 issue.
The first place to start being a better father doesn't begin with playing catch with your children. Some father's aren't able to physically play sports with their children. Being a better father starts with making mealtime a joy of life with a smile, optimism at the table, and words that make children and wife/partner feel good and important.
Those memories last a lifetime. Smile with your eyes at your family. You're all soul-mates. Body language and gestures count. Lean forward and look into the eyes of a family member as he or she speaks. Nod once in agreement. Don't fold your hands over your chest when your child or spouse speaks to you.
Never keep saying, "Right, right..." when your child or spouse is talking. One time saying, "I agree. That's so exciting," makes the dialogue such that the person talking to you feels valued. You'll be remembered with positive visual imageries when the family dinner is remembered by your child 50 years later, with a pleasant smile. You'll be treated by family members exactly how you treat them with words, gestures, and that smile with a glint of recognition of the good in your children and spouse in your eyes.
Nourish the mind to maximize potential of your family. "Advanced Brain Technologies (ABT) is a neurotechnology company that develops and distributes interactive software and music-based programs for the improvement of memory, attention, listening, academic skills, sensory processing, brain health, peak performance and more." CDs for relaxation, inspiration, learning, motivation, de-stressing, and thinking contain selected classical instrumental music with timing of 50-60 beats per minute.
When you listen to music played at 50-60 beats per minute, your heart rate adjusts to synchronize with the beats of the music, slowing down slightly. And your brain waves also synchronize in regularity and balance following the rhythm of those ideal 50-60 beats per minute of the music. The electrical system of your entire body adjusts to be in sync with specific musical rhythms. Knowledge leads to understanding how empathy and not the feeling of powerlessness in a family setting influence digestion at mealtimes.
Neurotechnology through music at food time helps you to walk down memory lane, reminisce, and enjoy how eating together, sharing that communal meal create great family memories that can last a lifetime for each member. You remember the conversation and food around a family table longer than you remember the times your parents took you to theme parks, movies, or sports events.
Food and music can be great catalysts for positive togetherness. Families are forever, like keepsake albums. You may remember the music playing in the background as well as the conversation at a particular meal with your family or on a first date or introduction.
There's a major research study underway at Howard University in Washington, DC, being conducted by Dr. Jay R. Lucker of the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders. The study is looking at the behavioral and brain mapping changes in auditory information processing following The Listening Program® from Advanced Brain Technologies. The study focuses on "Auditory Processing and Voice Production Abilities Following a Sound Intervention Training Program."
Check out the Advanced Brain Technologies forums and videos as well as training programs and audios. Family mealtime also is about listening, not only to the conversation, but also to the body language and gestures. What's spoken by each member over a plate of food affects all the other members in different ways. Listening to conversation changes when the speakers also are listening to background music that creates moods, tones, and textures that influence digestion.
How many family members today have the time schedules that permit all of them to sit down together for a communal meal with a common purpose and goal? And when they do gather, does each family member make sure that whatever is said brings out the best voice of confidence, family trust, connectedness, communication, tact, respect, resilience, and highest potential in any other family member?
Does each family member put the next one down so he or she can pick himself or herself up? Or do family members focus conversation at the dinner table (or kitchen table) on getting emotionally closer and creating memories around the table that will be recalled with smiles and joy long after parents are gone? Is sibling rivalry or one spouse’s envy/jealousy of the other’s achievements or education channeled into reaching one’s own goals?
Each family member steps to a different drummer. When you sit down to a family meal, do you applaud those personality differences that lead to diverse, but safe and secure lifestyle choices? Happiness is about inspiring the other family member to be all that he or she can be. The ideal of a family having meals together at the same time and table represents an ambiance of joy, communication, grace, and thanksgiving. It’s a time when members of a family can sit down together and enjoy conversation, laughter, concentration, good health, listening, great digestion, calmness, and conviviality.
If you had to buy one CD to play during family mealtimes, let it be Advanced Brain Technologies collection of six CDs of classical instrumental music in one package for thinking, learning, relaxing, de-stressing, motivating, or inspiring. If you can't afford to buy a CD collection (six CDs) then download the alternative, free MP3 audio files of Bach's classical Baroque music at the Brandenburg Concertos site. How many families make mealtime a place where people can feel good about themselves while discussing a topic valuable to that family and others? How many feel they are being listened to and remembered?
Some recall dinners at grandma’s table, when not only the family, but extended family members would gather in one place, usually on a weekend, on Friday, Saturday, or Sunday, for dinner. All too often, family conversation at the dinner table, if members ever have the same time schedules for eating together sounds something like this conversation (experienced as a guest at an individual’s family gathering):
Are you going to eat all that food you put on your plate?
I only weigh 120 pounds. This is my only meal of the day. Do I have to defend it?
How come you two are always arguing?
I’m not arguing. I’m only informing my husband what brings me joy and happiness.
That’s enough. Everybody out. I’m going to eat in my room. You're all eating me out of house and home. Food and money are scarce around here nowadays.
Sounds like the take-away-man. I need a vacation. I’m going to eat alone in a restaurant tomorrow. So I can get some relaxation. Eating with all of you gives me a stomach ache or a panic attack. I always feel put down at the table so he can build himself up. I guess it’s his inferiority complex and jealousy at my dream job and his lack of one. Don't you turn on me now that you've become a rebellious teen.
Now you know why I don’t ever want to get married or have kids to grow up and spit in my face. I might get a take-away-man like you did who always seems to begrudge you anything that brings you joy. He doesn’t even allow conversation at the table.
That’s probably because his parents all ate at separate times or ate together and usually fought at the table. Remember that public sign in the breakfast place that said, "Absolute Silence While Eating Please?" The dining place was on that travel show...In England, I think.
Dad told me that his mom threatened to stick a fork in his eye, like on that Soprano’s TV series episode, if he didn’t eat his vegetables. Hey, mom, we learned in school that a man treats his wife just like he treats his mom and his sister, especially if they have nothing in common.
Really? You have to walk a mile in his shoes and see why he acts that way. I bet the vegetables tasted bitter. Some people are just born with a gene that makes vegetables taste bitter to them. But don’t worry. We can eat together at the church luncheon on Sunday. In public, everybody will be on his or her best mood as far as conversation. What we all need is a little laughter around mealtime. Finish your vegetables, dear. I put the fruit and vegetables together to bring some sweetness to your plate.
Here’s a solution to this frequent mealtime issue. Put on classical music of the 17th or 18th century. Enjoy it. Or use a world music beat that makes you get up and dance around the dinner table. Music puts your brain on the right hemisphere track.
It’s the hemisphere that seeks harmony, serenity, and joy. So get out of your left brain hemisphere at mealtime and put a little music, dance, and joy into your digestion. What works best? While you and your family eat and speak together, also play on your computer, iPod, CD, or MP3 player (according to Wikipedia), the Brandenburg concertos by Johann Sebastian Bach, BWV 1046–1051, original title: "Six Concerts à plusieurs instruments."
These are a collection of six instrumental works presented by Bach to Christian Ludwig, margrave of Brandenburg-Schwedt, in 1721 (though probably composed earlier). They are widely regarded, according to Wikipedia, "as among the finest musical compositions of the Baroque era."
Don't play music with lyrics while you're trying to talk. Instrumentals can play softly as gentle background music to your conversations. And if you don't have a family, invite people with whom you get along to share a meal with you in order to make close friends. Check out my book, Neurotechnology with Culinary Memoirs from the Daily Nutrition & Health Reporter (2009).
The music works great on the brain to produce a feeling of joy of life. This might put a smile on the face of each family member at the dinner table. The conversation after is likely to be uplifting as the music. Download the free MP3 audio files at the Brandenburg Concertos site. Or link to the podcast. The free downloads are posted by the Czech Radio D-dur, Vinohradska 12120 99 Prague 2, Czech republic. Link to Brandenburg Concertos podcast.
Photo credits: Flickr.com.
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