MY PHILOSOPHY OF HEALTH AND HEALING
Health and illness are the results of a complex interplay between mind,
body and spirit. From another perspective, it is the result of the interplay
between our genetics and environment. We can not change our genetics,
but knowledge of our genetic strengths and weaknesses can be
invaluable. We receive two copies of each gene, one from each parent.
Often, one of these genes is more functional (gives more beneficial
information) than the other. Our diet and lifestyle can help determine
which of these copies our body utilizes the most. As another example, due
to genetics, one individual may require 100 times more of an essential
nutrient than the average person. Providing that nutrient in adequate
quantities is essential for good health.
A wide variety of physical, psychosocial, and energetic stressors
contribute to disease. Identifying and minimizing these stressors (which
can be thought of as "obstacles to healing") is essential to achieving and
maintaining optimal health.
One of the main stressors is environmental toxins. As humankind has
flooded our environment with toxic chemicals, every person on the planet
has heavy metals such as mercury and lead, pesticides such as DDT and
DDE, and industrial chemicals such as PCB's, dioxins and flame
retardants in our bodies- even newborn babies, who are exposed to these
toxins in utero. Detoxification and minimizing toxic exposure is crucial to
Another omnipresent stressor is pathogens, in the form of bacteria,
viruses,fungi and parasites. We are all exposed to these and have these
within our bodies. However, some people peacefully coexist with
pathogens while others are devastated by them, depending on the
number and type of pathogens and the strength of our immune system,
which is determined by genetics and other environmental factors such as
toxic exposures and psychosocial stress.
A commonly overlooked yet omnipresent stressor is the electromagnetic
fields we are all bathed in, from the electromagnetic fields of the
computers we sit at to those given off by TV's, stereos, refrigerators and
microwave ovens. Cell phones and cordless phones emit powerful
electromagnetic fields, and many of us live and work near cell-phone and
pager antennas and high-tension power lines, which can result in
profound adverse health effects.
Nutrient deficiencies are becoming increasingly common, due to our
exposure to growing levels of environmental toxins (and over-the-counter
and prescription medications) which can interfere with the absorption and
utilization of nutrients, as well as the decreasing nutrients found in so
much of our modern food supply. Just as important are excesses of foods
that provide little or no nutritional benefit, such as sugars and
hydrogenated fats. Many people also have hidden food allergies that
contribute to illness.
Another major stressor is trauma and injuries. This often begins with
compression of the skull as it passes thru the birth canal, and continues
with sprains, strains, contusions, fractures, concussionsand herniated
discs. Surgery, lacerations and dental work leave scars which can
imbalance our health. Osteopathy, chiropractic, craniosacral therapy and
other forms of bodywork, as well as physical therapies and neural therapy,
can help address these problems.
Psychosocial stress has a tremendous impact on our health. Most people
who experience physical or emotional abuse and/or neglect early in life
will have significant adverse health effects unless they actively work to
heal from these traumas. Emotions such as fear and anger are just as
toxic as chemicals and pathogens, while feelings of love and happiness
are important aspects of health and healing. I know of no illness that is
not aggravated by stress. As the world we live in becomes more hectic
and stressful, it can be an increasing challenge to cope with stress and
maintain equanimity. Of course, not only do our emotions affect our
physical health, but the physical stresses of toxins, electromagnetic
pollution, pathogens, nutrient deficiencies, and hormonal imbalances can
profoundly affect our emotions.
All of the above stressors can contribute to the growing epidemic of
hormonal imbalances, especially hypothyroidism, adrenal hormones, and
male and female sex hormones. This can create profound health
One of the newest discoveries in modern medicine is the growing
problem of hyperviscosity, or thick blood, caused by the interaction of
genetics, toxic exposures, pathogens, stress and nutrient deficiencies.
When the blood becomes too thick our tissues become starved of oxygen
and essential nutrients, leading to a variety of pain syndromes, chronic
infections, fatigue, cardiovascular disease and increased risk of cancer.
Temporarily thinning the blood may be a crucial therapy to allow other
treatments to work and to eliminate pathogens.
Proper nutrition is an essential component of healing. No matter what
other therapies are given, if we are deficient in essential vitamins,
minerals, essential fatty acids or amino acids we will be unable to fully
heal. Nutrient needs vary tremendously, based on genetics and
environmental stressors (for example, toxins can inhibit enzymes,
dramatically increasing our need for nutrients). Just taking a nutrient is no
guarantee it will be properly absorbed and utilized, so it is important to
give nutrients in forms that the body can use.
Sometimes removing obstacles to healing and providing proper nutrition
is all someone needs to heal, but many times the person remains
imbalanced. This is because our bodies are electromagnetic
mechanisms as well as physical/chemical mechanisms. Energy-based
therapies are often essential to healing. As a practitioner, I find this to be
the most rewarding (yet also most challenging) level to work with.
There are many modalities of energetic healing. The one I specialize in is
classical homeopathy (see my articles on this in our article section). My
associate, Cindy Quattro, is a licensed acupuncturist who also does medical
Qi Gong. Other energetic modalities include light and sound.