Related to neurobiology is the field of epigenetics. Dr Bruce Lipton, a cellular biologist, in his book “The Biology of Belief” demonstrates that the "environment" that your genes respond to also includes your conscious thoughts, emotions, and unconscious beliefs. In other words, emotions can regulate genetic expression. We are not, therefore, victims of our genes. Even if your forbears experienced certain illnesses or character traits, we can either switch on or switch off those genes.
According to Dr. Lipton, the true secret to life does not lie within your DNA, but rather within the mechanisms of your cell membrane. Each cell membrane has receptors that pick up various environmental signals, and this mechanism controls the "reading" of the genes inside your cells. Your cells can choose to read or not read the genetic blueprint depending on the signals being received from the environment. The genetic information does not ever have to be expressed. What this all means is that you are not controlled by your genetic makeup. Instead, your genetic readout (which genes are turned "on" and which are turned "off") is primarily determined by your thoughts, attitudes, and perceptions! And your diet!
This new science of epigenetics also reveals that you are in fact an extension of your environment, which includes everything from your thoughts and belief systems, to toxic exposures and exposure to sunlight, exercise, and, of course, everything you choose to put onto and into your body. As Dr. Lipton is fond of saying, the new biology moves you out of victimhood and into Mastery—mastery over your own health.
So the good news is that you are in control of your genes. You can alter them on a regular basis, depending on the foods you eat, the air you breathe, and the thoughts you think. It's your environment and lifestyle that dictates your tendency to express disease, and this new realization is set to make major waves in the future of disease prevention -- including one day educating people on how to fight disease at the epigenetic level. When a disease occurs, the solution, according to epigenetic therapy, is simply to "remind" your affected cells (change its environmental instructions) of their healthy function, so they can go back to being normal cells instead of diseased cells.
You can begin to do this on your own, long before you manifest a disease. By leading a healthy lifestyle, with high quality nutrition, exercise, limited exposure to toxins, and a positive mental attitude, you encourage your genes to express positive, disease-fighting behaviors. Dr Lipton says “genes don’t determine the fate of cells. The environment determines the fate of our cells, not the genetic pattern. So if cells are in a healthy environment, they are healthy. If they’re in an unhealthy environment, they get sick.” One of the most important environmental factors that will help genes to express healthily, is diet. Each of us is in charge of what we eat, and therefore our genetic expression.