by Michelle Bense
Stress responses do not live entirely in the brain, as emotional stresses. Other parts of the body can hold stress responses as well—think of the feelings of “butterflies” in the stomach or a “lump” in the throat. Neuro emotional technique (NET) can identify where those negative response patterns exist—whether we are aware of it or not—and help release them.
NET is a mind-body technique that finds and releases neurological imbalances held or “stuck” in some area of the body, related to the physiology of unresolved stress. NET acknowledges the relationship between the body’s emotional stress, environmental toxicity, nutritional imbalance and structural imbalances.
“Emotions such as fear, anger, sadness, dread and anxiety can affect us even years after the original event that caused them. The inability to let go of these emotions may cause self-destructive behaviors or even chronic illness,” says Dr. Lisa Rhodes, an NET practitioner at Integrative Health Care, in Fountainville. “We are usually unable to see the link between present behavior and the past event, so NET is used to identify the link and release the associated lingering emotional charge.”
Originally created in the early 1980s by chiropractor Scott Walker, NET is performed by a trained practitioner using a manual muscle test to determine if the body is in harmony with an unresolved event or stressor. The patient is asked to think about the source(s) of their emotional stress at the moment. Their body’s reactions while thinking about the stressor indicate to the practitioner where the stress is being held.
“With muscle testing, we can quickly track down the current and past events that are related to these old perceptions, stresses and memories,” explains Dr. Susan Burger, an NET practitioner at Dr. Susan Burger’s Vitality Center, in Morrisville. “As the patient remembers the traumatic event, the body replicates the physiology that occurred at the time of the event. Through the principles of acupuncture and neurology, we can safely and easily release those old patterns, freeing us to act and react in current time, rather than by the dynamics of old experiences.”
Generally, patients receive immediate results from NET. “People have explained this as feeling lighter, less burdened or as if a weight has been removed from their shoulders,” says Rhodes. “If I am working with pain, the pain will often resolve before they leave the office.”
Burger notes that NET does not replace psychological counseling and “talk” therapy, but the mind-body technique is useful in releasing the physical manifestations of emotions held in the body. “Emotions are a part of our experience as human beings, and need not be judged as good or bad,” she says. “However, if emotions are not fully processed, they can cause an unresolved pattern of stress that continues to reside in the body. These memories and perceptions can subconsciously affect us, often unknowingly, in the present.”
NET practitioners are fairly unlimited in their ability to address the physical and behavioral stress-related conditions of their patients, including body pains, headaches, phobias, general anxiety, self-sabotaging behaviors, organ dysfunctions and more. It is important to understand that NET does not cure or heal the patient, but removes blocks to the natural health of the body, allowing the body to repair itself as nature intended.
“The mind and body are an integrated whole. Our body thinks and feels,” says Burger. “In my 30 years of practice, I have repeatedly observed how old emotional traumas can manifest as illness, tension and imbalances in our bodies, behaviors and decisions. Using NET allows a deeper level of healing to take place by releasing the ‘charge’ of these ‘stuck’ emotional traumas. I find that this can often dramatically allow healing to occur more quickly and completely.”
NET can be used to address anything from physical symptoms to helping someone to achieve life goals when they are having difficulty taking the steps toward these goals, says Rhodes. “I find many people with chronic disease such as fibromyalgia, autoimmune diseases, pain syndromes, anxiety and irritable bowel syndrome usually have a neuro emotional component that needs to be released.”
Rhodes has found that when someone has gone to doctor after doctor about a certain issue, to no avail, they begin believing that they will never be healthy again. Often, NET can be used to release this belief system, which removes that block on the healing process.
“Living a healthy, joyful and successful life is possible no matter what your past or history is,” assures Burger. “Allowing ourselves to feel and experience emotions is part of being human, and we can love and support each other through the highs and lows.”
Dr. Susan Burger offers NET, chiropractic care, and mind/body healing, massage, acupuncture and other supportive services at Dr. Susan Burger’s Vitality Center, in Morrisville. Connect with her at 215-736-3803 or visit LiveWithVitality.com.
Dr. Lisa Rhodes, DPM, LAc., offers NET, acupuncture, nutritional testing and recommendations, laser therapy and more at Integrative Health Care, in Fountainville. Connect with her at 215-230-4600 or IntegrativeHealthCarePA.com.
Michelle Bense is a freelance writer and editor for Natural Awakenings. Connect with her at EditorMichelleBense@gmail.com. October 2015.
Looking up I see stunning views, giant looming red rocks, and shadows of blue/green and grey vegetation. It’s winter in Arizona, where I came to visit friends for a needed break.
Challenging times and multiple changes have led me to what feels like a new phase of life. Unsure of what’s ahead I feel a bit apprehensive, yet boosted by the anticipation of boundless possibilities!
Peggy, Mike and I embarked on a hike up to Cathedral Rock in Sedona, one of the spots said to be a vortex area. Halfway up the trail it was getting steeper and more challenging. With Peggy still healing from knee surgery they chose to stop there. I was determined to continue alone. It felt good to hike, to push myself and my body.
Climbing the rocks higher at one point I remember wishing someone was with me. What if I fell? But the exhilaration of the outdoors and the beauty around me far outweighed that fleeting fear.
I crested the top of the trail to Cathedral Rock and as I looked out I found myself taking in a deep breath - the view was stunning. To my delight there was a group of young adults sitting on the rocks singing with one guy playing guitar. A man turned to me and asked with a twinkle in his eye, “Do you have any requests?!” A magical moment to hear music as an additional reward at the top of the climb.
One of my favorite lines from a John Denver song began playing in my head as a large bird flew overhead. “You know he’d be a poorer man if he never saw an eagle fly...Rocky Mountain high...”. Colorado, Arizona, it doesn’t matter where I am in this world, Mother Nature is awesome.
Heading back down the mountain I ran into other folks along the way until there was a string of us descending together. Eventually I spotted my dear friends who were enjoying each other and the beautiful scenery in their own way, patiently waiting as they gave me the gift of time to explore.
As we walked the end of the trail back to the car, it struck me that I was never alone on the mountain. I was a vital participant in life itself, supported by the seen and the unseen. At that moment in time all was well in my world. Remembering that is always so, I relished the next moment, and then the next. The awesomeness that we are all a part of. Now that’s my kind of high!
I remember the first Christmas Eve that I spent without my kids. That night before Christmas was always my favorite part of the holiday when I was a kid. Neighbors would drop by, we’d have yummy snacks, and after Dad put the lights on we would decorate the tree.
This tradition continued when I got married and had my own children, until it didn’t. After my divorce, with 50/50 custody, there came that Christmas Eve my boys were at their Dad’s. I just stayed home that night, and I remember what a strange feeling it was.
We had gone through mediation for our divorce and fortunately within a year or two found ourselves open to gathering together on the holidays, so we could both be with the kids at times. For me this meant keeping things in perspective, and finding gratitude for all I realized I had learned from my marriage and from my divorce. It meant taking responsibility.
As the years went on it also meant creating new traditions and expanding my definition of family. One year I sent out an e-mail invitation to some friends the afternoon of the winter solstice (December 21st). It was a beautiful but chilly day, and the boys and I decided we’d have a fire in the pit outside that night. We would talk about the year ahead, our dreams and intentions, and tell funny stories. The invitation was sent out last minute, and yet 4 delightful friends showed up to join us. We shared a beautiful evening around the fire, and they became family...
As life changes, as it always will, we can choose to find joy in our lives in creative ways. The challenges that seem to be in our way, sometimes ARE the way. They can be the opening and opportunity for finding the next grandest version of ourselves! We can be bold enough to expand our definition of family, create new traditions, start new ventures, and listen within to what our heart is really yearning for.
All of it is a blessing. I have learned not to judge things as good or bad. I know that if we love ourselves and honor the journey that we will become more of who we can be. And aren’t the holidays really about love anyway?
Photo courtsey of Hisashiv via Flickr
Another lesson from my cat, and the fleas.
I adopted my cat Crystal about 9 years ago. They guessed she was around 2 years old. Crystal is a very sweet cat and yet would not let me hold her. When I picked her up she would be agitated and try to get down. I wondered what her first 2 years had been like.
My kids would pet her and it took a few years but they got her to a point that she would relax and even roll over and let them pet her soft belly! A little more trust. She still wasn’t comfortable being picked up.
Recently, even though she is an indoor cat, fleas showed up. ick! She was miserable as we began to fight the fight against these spunky little insects!
I took it upon myself to handle this without bombing the place...not sure I’ll be successful. But so far we seem to be making progress.
She has tolerated the flea comb, me spraying stuff on her, adding things to her food, and the vacuum running much more often than usual. The fleas are starting to leave her alone.
Crystal, in 9 years, would never sit on my lap either. A few days ago I was sitting on the couch and she was lying next to me. She got up, looked at me, and placed her front paws on my lap... There she stayed for a minute or two, and then with a little hesitation, slowly pulled her back legs up and lay on my lap. She snuggled in, and laid her head down.
You could say that my lap was a good place where she knew there would be no fleas (hopefully!) but this was different. This journey together with the fleas somehow brought another degree of trust between us.
For me the lesson is that when we are caring, loving, and consistent, trust can be regained. But it must be earned. All of us have fears that we have acquired, and need the love, acceptance and caring of others to reassure us that we are OK - that there are safe people and safe places, and fears don’t have to live within us forever. It may take time, but that’s OK.
Now I can barely get her off my lap!
“My life has been full of terrible misfortunes, most of which never happened.” said Michel deMontaigne.
Life is always full of surprises and changes. Feeling frustrated, angry, sad, worried or afraid are all feelings that need to be felt and acknowledged. Having said that, I have learned over the years that the best next step is to let go of judgment. Not always easy to do.
As we reconnect with our hearts and feel our feet on the ground again, we can take an emotional step back. Maybe this thing is not good OR bad. Either way, it is what it is.
When I am being the best ME, how will I respond?
When things are falling apart it is still OK to laugh. As the world seems to be in greater turmoil every day, it is all that more important that we express love, friendship, and community. Think of one thing that you thought was the end of the world...and later saw the beauty in it. You can find at least one!
Not long ago my younger sister died of cancer. Eight years before, (through a misundertanding that I don’t think I’ll ever understand!), she chose to stop speaking to me. It hurt deeply.
A few months before her diagnosis we reconnected at my parents house. It was a civil meeting, no deep conversation, but broke the ice. As the months drew on I ended up playing a role in her life and her dying that I never would have anticipated, partly because of that 8 year silence and what I learned about myself.
I believe that the universe conspires in our favor, even when we don’t see it.
Next time you start to judge something or someone, stop and reframe for a moment. Maybe, just maybe, “there is gold in them there hills!”.
So judge not good or bad. Be in the fullness of all the joys and sorrows life brings. For me, loving ourselves and each other through it is the key to living a life of joy and freedom. In fact, it may be the only way the world will change.
In the world of quantum physics there exists no time and distance - some things just ARE. But in these heavier human bodies that are our vehicles during this lifetime, chronological times exists in our perception and experience.
So if aging is a part of this cycle, how can we be anti-aging? How can we be against aging?
If we look for superficial ways to fight against aging we will be deeply disappointed when the years begin to show anyway, eventually.
I have worked with thousands of practice members over the last 25 years and I have seen many feel younger, look younger, feel healthier and more energetic. When we listen to the body’s messages and honor them, give it what it needs nutritionally, emotionally, spiritually... then age begins to be less of a factor.
As we live in alignment with who we are, what our purpose is, and expressing who we are authentically, we age as we are meant to. We die when the time is just right. Each day is valued, we live from our hearts, we rest when we need to, we remember to breathe....
Living in the “present”, every day is a gift. With each little wrinkle comes wisdom. There is beauty in a body and soul who has been on earth many years yet still reflects a spark and a vitality - that is my goal. In my opinion this will not be achieved by fighting an “anti-aging” fight, but by embracing the beauty that comes with age, taking care of ourselves, transmuting fears, seeing with more loving eyes, and knowing that being the best YOU helps make the “space” for others to do the same. We support each other in the “field”...
Yesterday I was at a meeting of an interfaith group. There was an amazingly sharp man there who is very involved. He was saying that he has worked for years for peace, and now has a 7-year plan. He wanted the group to make some powerful decisions about things to do, and get to it! He said, “I don’t have too many years left and I want to get more things done!” He is 93.
How old, or how YOUNG are you?
Today I read about a patient with Muscular Dystrophy (MD) that was helped by chiropractic care. It reminds me of incident that occurred some years ago that surprised and saddened me.
A few years after I started my holistic chiropractic practice, I was approached by the Muscular Dystrophy Foundation to “go to jail.” You pretend you are in jail and call your friends and colleagues to raise money for them. At the time I was running my practice and had 2 little boys, so I didn’t have the time to spend on a day “in jail.”
What I did offer them is a donation of a full year’s worth of care, no charge, for 2 children in their group.
I was excited about the thought of providing care to those kids, and making a difference as much as I could, to help them live more productive and comfortable lives. In my studies, I had read about the progress that some children have made with chiropractic care, and that at the very least it wasn’t going to hurt. I started reading up on techniques and special cases with MD that my colleagues had dealt with over the years to learn what has worked the best...
I looked forward to hearing back from the MD association, but they didn’t get back to me. When I called them the answer was this: “We’re sorry, we can’t accept that donation.”
“Why not?” I asked. The person hummed and hawed, and just indicated they simply weren’t interested in accepting my offer. I was confused since I thought my offer was quite generous. Oh silly, idealistic me...
Couldn’t they at least offer it to the families that they work with and let them make the decision? NO. Can you put it up on a bulletin board or something, at least giving families the choice to come and see me if they choose to? NO.
For years now I say I “don’t donate to diseases.” Meaning to the Heart Association, the Muscular Dystrophy Association, the Cancer Society, etc. I know they do some good for a lot of people, but their traditional medical model is limited. Where does all that money go really??
Instead I put my focus, my time, my money, and my help towards things that I feel more deeply support healing the whole person, and not just the perpetuation of disease care. But that’s just me...
This morning I went to the 7-11 to pick up a small container of half and half. Yes, I drink coffee in the morning and like a little cream in it, I admit it!
The man in front of me had a large bottle of soda, a few bags of chips and things, and several packs of cigarettes. His bill was over $32. And this is how he started his day.
If you had a Lamborghini or a Porsche, you would be very proud of what an amazing machine you were driving! You would likely have a conniption if someone scratched it, left some trash inside…or maybe even touched it! You’d get the oil changed – the best oil would be used! The tires would be aligned – oh yea, you’d have the best tires too! Yep, that baby would purr…and handle great!
You’d proudly drive into the gas station, and ask them to water down the gas and give you the crappiest, cheapest stuff they have from the bottom of the tanks…
Oh, you wouldn’t??!!
So why do we do this to our bodies? We are surprised, disappointed, and even angry at our bodies for being sick, chronically tired, achy, and unfit. It’s not our body’s fault. It isn’t trying to make us miserable. In fact, it is giving us messages that it needs help and some tender loving care.
If you didn’t take care of your car and it broke down, you wouldn’t blame the car.
The soda and chips this man consumed this morning is not food. That is, if your definition of food is something that sustains and nourishes you – something that is beneficial to your health and the growth and healing of your body.
You can trade in your Lamborghini when the ashtrays are dirty or you want a new color, but your body is the vehicle that you have for the rest of this lifetime. Honor it, love it, listen to it…loving your body is loving yourself. And loving yourself and being healthy and vibrant is one way you can better love all those around you.
This evening I stopped to get gas in my car. It was dark, snowy, and quite cold. The Trenton gas station attendant was a young man all bundled up with layers of clothes, a hood, and gloves, but you could still see he was cold. Despite the freezing weather, he kept working and the gas station was busy.
I paid him and said, “Hey thanks for doing this for us in the cold!” He nodded and started to walk to the next car, then stopped and turned around. He pulled his hood back a little and shouted to me “Thanks! You know, you were the only person that has thanked me tonight!”
He smiled and went back to work.
I don’t know if it was him or me that felt the best about that little exchange. I felt warmer, and maybe he did too.
Photo by vistamommy via flickr
Recently there was a news story on TV focused on farmers that were concerned that the corn they gave their cattle was getting much more expensive. So guess what they thought was a good idea?? Buying leftover or imperfect candy not fit for human consumption! Gummy worms, ice cream sprinkles, and even Cap’n Crunch cereal to feed the cows.
What are they crazy?!
How sick are those animals going to be? And how many drugs will they give them to try to keep them alive long enough to be able to slaughter them and sell it? To say nothing of the poor quality of the meat that will produce. They thought it was a great idea. Good way to save money, and hey, no surprise – the cows fatten up quite nicely.
This is another example of how we can be so disconnected from our food, the animals, life, health, well being, and… well, common sense!
Candy picture by Lciuffo via Wikimedia Commons
This is what a friend of mine said to me last week. He is originally from Sweden and recently moved to the U.S. to take a new position with his company. In his attempt to get a handle on American politics, he watched the Democratic and Republican conventions, and keeps his eye on the news.
So far he seems to align more with the Democrat philosophies, but he has noticed that most of the people in the higher positions, like himself, who make a very decent income, seem to be Republicans. Whether deserved or not, they have the reputation of being concerned only about the short-term bottom line. An attitude of making money at the expense of the long term good of the people, the environment, the country or the world at large.
What is wrong with this picture? Our politics can seem strange to people from other places. Seems strange to me too honestly.
What do you call someone who is very successful AND insists that business be done with a high level of integrity? A Republicrat? I know I am being silly here but really, I am so tired of the polarity of our parties and our politics
I support people in making great livings and running successful businesses (I am small business owner myself). And it must be done with integrity…always. That is the only thing that will sustain us in the long term. Our systems are crashing around us. Maybe they need to hit bottom before we have the sense to recreate businesses, government, and communities that care and communicate, and keep in mind that we are living here with each other and synergistically with the planet.
My grandfather was congressman of New Jersey in the late 1940’s. He was Republican. He left politics in 1949 because he was tired of the games. He decided not to play and went back to his law practice
What games are we playing here?
The election is over. Obama has a second term. Hang on to your hats because no matter who is president I believe that living with integrity is brewing as the new way of being…
I had a phone message from my friend Jamie. She had just completed her first 5K run ever!! A big accomplishment after much training, exercise, weight loss, and sweat. But, the next day both of her knees hurt so badly that she had trouble getting up and down stairs. “I am afraid I will never be able to do another one!” she said on her message.
If she were to go to the MD she would most likely be given some anti-inflammatory medication. That could help the pain, but wouldn’t help Jamie correct the problem so she could continue running.
1. Where was the pain? The pain was on both knees, on the “inside”.
2. What shoes did she wear? She had purchased some new shoes a few weeks before, but they didn’t feel quite right so on the day of the race she wore some other older ones. The kind that sort of have a “rolly” sole and are good for having a cute butt! (or so they say)
3. What kind of surface were you running on? It was an uneven surface on local roads that were not all paved well, with a fair share of bumps.
4. Since the pain was in both knees- medial area – I asked, “If you put your feet about 3 inches apart and you look down at your knees, do they almost touch?” The answer was “Yes.”
5. If you look down at your feet, are they pretty flat on the ground with very little arch? “Yes.” That is called genu valgum- or “knock knees” and are very common, usually along with “flat feet.”
OK, so that is all I needed to hear. No x-rays necessary (even though I do x-rays in my office).
Here is what she needs according to my assessment without seeing her in person:
1. Pain on both sides indicates it is not a local problem, but something that is affecting both knees posturally.
2. She wore shoes that are not made for running a 5K. She needs to get to a store where someone can help her assess her actual foot size and width – feet change over the years. Find a good shoe that fits right. Over the years my favorites for me are Ascics and New Balance – Nikes don’t seem to fit me well. Don’t get attached to a brand. Get what fits and feels right.
3. The surface she was running on was not the flat even surface her body was used to. Every summer I have folks come in to my office with foot, knee, hip, leg, and back pain that seemed to come “out of the blue”. When I ask, “Have you been to the Jersey shore recently?” Often the answer is “Yes, how did you know?!” Well, walking barefoot in the sand works the foot and leg muscles in a different way so they may get sore because it’s not what your body is used to! Or the other question is, “Have you worn different shoes lately? Like heels to a wedding?”
4. Flat feet are very common. In fact, when I was about 4 years old, I was tripping over my feet since they were turned in. The MD told my parents that they should get me special shoes with a bar between them and I’d have to sleep with that. My parents, back in the 1950’s, were already seeing a chiropractor that had been able to keep my Dad from having back surgery and my Mom to minimize migraine headaches. So they took me to see him and he checked me out and said, “It is not her feet but the imbalance is coming from her hips”. (I check infants in my practice and it is not uncommon to find babies that have internally rotated hips that are easily corrected). After a few months of adjustments my feet and legs straightened out. I still have flat feet, although they don’t turn in anymore, so I wear custom foot stabilizers that have helped me work on my feet all day for 25 years! (I get mine from Foot Levelers and provide that service for my patients in my office with a digital foot scan and exam).
5. I adjust my patients from head to toe, since it is all connected. We work from top to bottom and address the hips, knees, and feet. As we do that, things change and balance over a period of a few months. Then, as the person starts to stabilize, we order the orthotics to support the new found balanced posture! (You won’t get this from Dr. Scholl’s in the local pharmacy)
My point is: You have a choice!! Take the meds that decrease the pain if you need to, but don’t stop there! Consult a chiropractor or other health professional that could offer you a more in depth perspective of the cause of your pain.
Always remember this: Your body is always telling you something. Find out what that is and address the cause.
Today (11/6/12, after Hurricane Sandy) I am adding that our thoughts and prayers go to the New Jersey shore communities…and I see many more people getting the chance once again to run on the sandy Jersey shore!
I was reading an article that said:
“The faint-hearted among us often question the suicidal bravery of mountaineers who risk their lives to climb the world’s highest peaks. When asked why they climb the mountain, the stock-in-trade explanation is something like, “because it’s there.” (www.WWDTY.com)
It reminded me of a man that I saw interviewed on TV a few years ago. I don’t remember his name. He had reached the summit of Mount Everest the most times of any human being.
What stopped me in my tracks is his response to the interviewers question of how he was able to do that. Many have died in their attempt to reach that goal.
And he said, “My goal was not to get to the top at all costs. It was to get back down.”
There were times he was very close, but conditions were such that he thought it would be too dangerous to go that last little bit to the summit. So he would head back down, and try again another time. When others died trying to reach the top, he did not chance it. He took risks, but knew when to change his plans.
WOW! Did that strike me as some important wisdom!
If somewhere along the way, when we have set our goals and are moving towards them, we hear that little inner voice that indicates a change in direction… then it is wise to listen. Maybe it is not the goal to achieve, but to learn to listen and engage our inner wisdom along the way for the lessons the journey teaches us.
It is said, “It is about the journey, not the destination.” Wise words that I will continue to remember.
It was 20 years ago when my first son was born. Sometimes it seemed that my boys would be little forever. But today, it seemed like yesterday that he came into my life.
He came into this world as a gentle, sweet soul, but over time I saw him start to “harden” as life, society, and peers had their influence. Yet, all along he followed his heart. As he got older, he came more into being who he really is. He found friends that fit for him.
He always loved geography, the world, and other cultures and languages. He learned spanish easily. When he was 11 years old saw a book on Beginners Japanese and asked if he could get it. A few weeks later he was speaking Japanese sentences.
Friends from South Korea came into his life and soon he was learning that language. He began to appreciate their music and culture. Last summer a friend invited him to stay with him and his family in Seoul for a month. He loved it.
That brings us to TODAY. Today I took my sweet, young man to JFK airport in New York for his flight to Seoul. He plans to stay for 18 months. I think that is the hardest part for me. I miss him already. Not that I spent all that much time with him with college and work…but at least he was around.
I personally love to travel. I understand his wanderlust. And yet this was bittersweet moment. I am so proud of him. He worked hard to make this happen.
I walked into the airport with him and stood in line to help him with his suitcases as we were waiting to check in. At the desk they made sure that he had verification of a flight home or he could not go. It came time for him to go through security, which meant we had to say goodbye. I started getting teary- of course- and told him I loved him and gave him a hug. He noticed my tears and said ‘Mom why are you crying?” I told him because I will miss him. Felt funny to have him ask a question like that.
I think that can be a boy’s way of not having it hurt them so much either…
As he went through the slow security line he would periodically look back to see if I was still there and he’d give a little wave. Finally, he was through and I saw the back of his head as he headed to his gate.
Such mixed emotions…so proud of him. Loving him so much, letting him go, missing him already, relief for me in a way, and so thankful that he is my son.
We must love our children enough to let them be who they are. And love ourselves enough to know that we did the best that we could.
Now all I can do is let go…and keep in my prayers that he has every blessing and life experience that is perfect for his soul. I have no idea what that is…I can only be here for him as he needs me.
Letting go might be the hardest but best thing we will ever do.
Every Halloween season I see an increase of people complaining of runny noses, fatigue, stuffy sinuses, and more. There is talk of having “caught” a cold or the flu, more aches and pains, or feeling lousy because of the colder weather.
I believe there is another factor involved during this last quarter of the year. The scary effects of way too much sugar! It begins on Halloween. I see children and adults getting sick the week after. Then the holiday season continues with cookies, cakes, candy all kinds of goodies through Thanksgiving, Christmas, Hanukah, and New Years.
Could it be because of the increase in sugar intake? Well let’s see.
We know that sugar promotes inflammation in the body
* It can contribute to fatty liver disease
* Can cause insulin resistance
* Contributes to weight gain
* Feeds cancer cells
* Decreases HDL or “good” cholesterol
* Significantly interferes with the immune system by causing a decrease in the responsiveness of the white blood cells, particularly the neutrophils. So your body is less able to fight off the “invaders”. The neutrophils also play a part in decreasing inflammation. So as the sugar causes increased inflammation in the body, the neutrophils are also less able to counter that effect.
So, BOO! Didn’t mean to scare you. But it may be wise to keep the sugar intake to a minimum. You just might find that you get through the holidays feeling better and stronger than usual!
I was speaking to a woman today answering questions on how she could boost her health, vitality, and energy, and normalize her weight. She lamented that in the past she had been able to stick to a strict regimen and lose all of her weight, but then would gain it all back. This occurred over and over.
As I began to make some suggestion, she said “But it’s the fall and I want to try all the new beers!” Well OK then- go ahead and have a couple beers! And if you do, enjoy them! She gave me a confused look.
Say for example you were in law school and got a whole year of all straight A’s, but then got a “C” (maybe you had too many beers before the tests!). Would you think you should just quit, that it was all in vain, and that you’re a failure? Or would you learn from it, get back to the business of school, achieve more “A” grades, and graduate successfully! By the end, that “C” would be insignificant.
While some things need to change to adjust oneself onto a more positive path, if we put too many restrictions and too much pressure on ourselves to never stray, we only go from a disciplined extreme to overindulgence. Because of the deprivation, the pressure of being flawlessly disciplined will quickly jolt you back to your unhealthy habits.
For instance, say you took a rubber band and put it around your index finger on the left hand, then over the index finger on the right hand. As you pull your hands apart the band tightens. If you keep pulling it gets tighter and tighter, but you keep pulling with all your might, holding great tension. Then suddenly you let go and it snaps quickly with great force back to its original size.
On the other hand, say you take the same rubber band around the same fingers. You pull the hands slowly apart as the tension increases in the band. But this time you don’t pull as hard. You pull it to a gentle tension and stop there. So, when you let go, it snaps back but more gently. In fact, it barely snaps at all. Overall, small changes over time create less pressure and allow more room for both missteps and growth. Instead of extremes, there’s more balance.
Keeping this is mind, my suggestion to her was this: Make a plan that is sensible – after all, your goal is better health and vitality. And that requires a lifestyle change, not a strict diet. When Octoberfest comes and you want to go- GO! Make the conscious decision if that is what you want. Enjoy the beer and the sausage sandwiches, enjoy your friends, and have fun! Your body will digest and assimilate all of that better if you have a good attitude towards it! (Those are the “C” days).
The next day, since a healthy life and weight is on your priority list, continue the lifestyle that helps you feel energetic and great. (Those are the “A” days). In the long run, when there are a lot more “A” days than “C” days, you will be in great shape and not feel deprived of anything.
Love yourself enough to be honest with yourself. To be gentle with yourself. To stay conscious about your decisions. In this way you can change old habits, decide when a “C” is OK now and then, and keep living a life of excellence~!
Hurray! A 20% shopping coupon when you get one! No appointment necessary! Yes, Get Your Flu Shot now!! These are what the signs say inside and outside of our local CVS drug store.
But just because the needles are smaller and you get a coupon, doesn’t make the substance being shot into your veins is any safer or more effective. Are sure you want to do that??
Did you know that there are hundreds of articles in medical journals that reveal that vaccines can actually harm your immune system and increase the susceptibility to the diseases that they are supposed to protect against? Flu vaccines contain mercury, formaldehyde, detergent, and other harmful ingredients that cause inflammation and nerve damage. Sounds counterproductive to me.
There is increasing evidence that flu shots increase the incidence of Alzheimer’s disease. One study showed that people who received the flu vaccine each year for 3 to 5 years had a 10-fold greater chance of developing Alzheimer’s than those who did not have any flu shots. And no, that is not a typo: 10-fold greater chance!
In addition the CDC’s advisory committee on immunization practices often has a majority of committee members with a financial interest in immunizations. This alone must create some doubt in whether these shots are really in our best interest.
Google it and you will see the mounting evidence that these vaccines are not all that we are led to believe. Don’t just take my word for it. And if you still want to get the flu shot then that is your choice and you will be making it from a more informed viewpoint.
I know it sounds as if I am bashing something as American as apple pie and baseball. But please, take the time to question what you have taken for granted. There are many things that you can do to safely and naturally support your body’s immunity and ability to fight the flu, without the dangers involved. Ask me!