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Imagery and Visualisation in Hypnotherapy

The use of imagery in psychotherapy has a long tradition. Freud placed great emphasis on the ‘dream content’ and mental imagery of his analysands. For Freud, what seemed most important was to bring ‘a state of evenly suspended attention’ to the analysand’s free-associations of words, images and feelings, avoiding ‘as far as possible, reflection and the construction of conscious expectations,’ trying not to ‘fix’ the things he heard but instead ‘catching the drift of the patient’s unconscious with his own’ (Freud 1923:239).

In other words, and at least in the early stages of his career, Freud believed that the role of the therapist was to enter into a free-floating reflective state alongside the client and allow some kind of meaning to emerge.

Hypnotherapy has long made use of mental imagery to enable people to achieve a cognitive restructuring of their inner experience. The prevalence of the use of imagery in hypnotherapy might be because it seems to become easier for us to follow guided visualisation processes or become more aware of our spontaneous mental imagery when we close our eyes or begin to relax.

Sensory deprivation or distortion

The changes in the way that we experience ourselves proprioceptively in space that are commonly associated with hypnotic phenomena, seem to make it easier for us to shift our attention inward and practise visualisation techniques or become more aware of our own mental imagery.

In neuroscientific terms, studies seem to point to decreased activity in the parietal lobes and a deafferentation of the posterior superior parietal lobule (PSPL). The functional deafferentation suggests a decrease in the arrival of distracting stimuli to the striate cortex and PSPL, enhancing a sense of focus and producing an altered perception of self-experience. This PSPL deafferentation is supported by three neuroimaging studies of subjects engaged in meditation (Newberg and Iverson, 2003) but is not without controversy.

Guided imagery or visualisation

Guided imagery or visualisation might involve asking someone to imagine themselves in a number of situations or contexts, feeling calm, confident, relaxed and having already mastered a particular task that previously challenged them. It might involve them visualising themselves in a situation, whilst ‘borrowing’ resources from a role model (real or fictional) who does this task with total confidence, and then doing the task themselves.

Hypnotherapeutic techniques for physical healing make use of other applications of guided imagery: for example, imagining an affected area and then changing its colour or shape or sensation or using visual metaphors that represent the body healing itself. There are a number of studies looking at the use of guided imagery in physical healing such as: Roffe et al (2005), which suggests that guided imagery may be ‘psycho-supportive’ and may ‘increase comfort’ and recommends further research.

One area of research into hypnotherapy using guided imagery is in the treatment of IBS. A systematic review by Wilson et al (2006) found that out of the 20 studies (18 trials of which four were randomized, two controlled and 12 uncontrolled) and two case series evaluated, over half of the trials (10 of 18) indicated a significant benefit.

Imagery used in research studies includes ‘gut-directed’ scripts such as those developed by Whorwell at the Wythenshawe Hospital, including imagining the digestive system as a river and adjusting the river’s flow.

It is interesting to note that guided imagery can be more or less guided, according to the style and approach of a particular therapist. For example, in the gut-directed work cited above, it might be more appropriate to suggest that a client connects with her own experience of her digestive system – its look and feel and colour or any images or metaphors that come into her mind – and work with these. Other clients may benefit from more specific suggestions: ‘Imagine your digestive system as a river…’ I would suggest that this is an area for further research.

Ability to visualise

One of the common issues encountered in hypnotherapy around the use of mental imagery is the client’s ability to visualise. Some people will tell you that they find it very difficult to ‘picture’ things in their minds.

Visual mental imagery, or ‘seeing with the mind’s eye’, has been the subject of considerable controversy in cognitive science. Scientists do not yet fully understand whether images are fundamentally different from verbal thoughts, whether they share underlying mechanisms with visual perception or how the information contained in images is represented.

What might be helpful in enabling clients to work with mental imagery is to help them to think of imagery in terms of imagination – the ability to form mental images, sensations, sounds and concepts. In this way, mental imagery becomes more than ‘pictures in the mind’ and encompasses the entire spectrum of our experiencing. (The literature on synesthesia may form useful clues in the future to understanding the rich and multi-modal ways that we process and structure our inner worlds.)

One of the assumptions made by NLP, despite a current lack of evidence, is that people structure their experience primarily according to visual, kinaesthetic, auditory (or digital) processes and that a therapist can deduce this sensory preference through subtle ‘eye accessing cues.’ Given the lack of evidence, it my be preferable to use language that enables someone to make use of the entire spectrum of sensory experience in their mental imaginings.

Further benefits

In addition to the kinds of cognitive restructurings that can be achieved through the specific content of guided visualisation (the specific tasks and contexts visualised), it seems that the process itself of repeated visualisation brings further underlying benefits.

As we continue to learn to connect with the inner world of our mental imagery or imagination, we tend to gain an increased sense of ourselves (what the traditional hypnotherapy literature might describe as ‘ego-strengthening’).

In the 1970s, the psychologist Jerome L. Singer, conducted an analysis of the use of mental imagery techniques in psychotherapy (1974) and concluded that clients who practice visualisation techniques develop an underlying sense of confidence and self-control which seems to correlate with their increasing sense of mastery over their own mental imagery (Singer, 1974: 132).

It’s interesting to note Singer’s use of ‘affect,’ suggesting that mental imagery is as much about working with and mastering our bodily affects and emotions as it is about ‘picturing’ things.

The process of consistent and repeated visualisation or mental imagining seems very similar, in this sense, to Jung’s key therapeutic practice of ‘active imagination.’ Jung saw his technique as a way of granting the psyche freedom and time to express itself spontaneously, without the habitual interference of ‘ego’ (or of social and cultural constructs and expectations). Jung also called this process ‘the art of letting things happen.’

According to Jung, the client makes himself more and more creatively independent through the method of active imagination. No longer dependent on his dreams or his therapist’s knowledge, he gives shape to himself in a new sense, by actively imagining himself (Collected Works of C. Jung. XVI, para. 106).

References:

Newberg A.B., Iversen J.,(2003), The neural basis of the complex mental task of meditation: neurotransmitter and neurochemical considerations, Med Hypotheses, 61: 2, p 282-291.

Roffe et al. (2005) ‘A systematic review of guided imagery as an adjuvant cancer therapy.’ Psycho-Oncology Volume 14, Issue 8, pages 607-617, August 2005 which

Singer (1974) Imagery & Daydream Methods in Psychotherapy & Behaviour Modification. New York.

Wilson S, Maddison T., Roberts L, Greenfield S., Singh S. 2006. ‘Systematic review: the effectiveness of hypnotherapy in the management of irritable bowel syndrome.’Alimentary Pharmacology & Therapeutics.Volume 24, Issue 5, pages 769-780, September.

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The Room of 1000 Demons – Lessons From a Tibetan Monk on Controlling Anxiety and Fear

In Tibetan monasteries every five years the ‘Room of 1000 Demons’ is made available to the monks in training. In order to gain enlightenment (nirvana), all they have to do is to walk into the room and out the other side. However, once in the room, the entrance door cannot be opened from the inside and they have to walk across the room and leave it by the exit door.

The problem is that inside the room are 1000 demons, each of whom know what your worse fear is. For example, if you hate spiders, once in the room you’ll find yourself among 1000 of the worst kind of spiders imaginable.

Once this is explained to them, most of the monks decide not to go through this process. They are bid farewell by the elders and advised to go back to the monastery to study some more and in another five years they will have the opportunity to go through the room.

To the monks who are left, and admittedly it is a small number, the elders congratulate them for their courage and are taken to one side. The chief monk advises them as follows:

“You know that to achieve everything you have studied and meditated for you must go through the Room of 1000 Demons. You have been told why the room is so called. I congratulate you for your courage and suggest that you keep two things in mind once the door closes behind you in the room:

(1) None of the demons are real,

and,

(2) Keep moving your feet.”

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Ayurvedic Herbal Treatment of Acute Intermittent Porphyria (AIP)

Porphyria is a group of inherited disorders in which affected individuals have a deficiency of certain enzymes which convert chemicals known as porphyrins into heme. Heme is a protein substance which is present in almost all body tissues but is most commonly found in red blood cells, bone marrow, and liver. A faulty and incomplete conversion of porphyrins results in a buildup of these substances in the body and causes symptoms such as abdominal pain, constipation, vomiting, muscular pain, high blood pressure and an increased heart rate. Cutaneous manifestations of the disease result in itching and skin rash. Severe manifestations of this condition result in convulsions, confusion and hallucinations.

Acute intermittent porphyria can be precipitated by medications, fasting, smoking, infections, surgery, stress, menstrual hormones, and excessive use of alcohol or exposure to the sun. This results in intermittent and acute presentation of the above mentioned symptoms usually requiring hospitalization and intensive care. Such patients are treated using intravenous glucose to maintain adequate carbohydrate levels and achieve rehydration, A medication known as hematin, if available, is used to convert the excess porphyrins into heme, thus resulting in reduced symptoms. The buildup of porphyrins in the body can also be reduced by phlebotomy (removal of blood from a vein) and the use of activated charcoal which combine with porphyrins and help eliminate them from the body.

While patients can be managed conservatively in hospital for the acute presentation, there is no long-term cure for this condition. Ayurvedic treatment can be used safely and effective in the management of porphyria-like conditions. The presenting symptoms in affected individuals are interpreted in the light of Ayurvedic pathophysiology and treated accordingly. Most such symptoms correspond to the disease known in Ayurvedic terminology as Adhog (going downwards) Raktapitta, with symptoms predominantly caused due to a joint dysfunction of Vata and Pitta doshas. Ayurvedic treatment is therefore aimed at treating Vata dysfunction and reducing excessive Pitta. Mild herbal medicines which have a digestive and anti-spasmodic action are used in the stage of acute presentation of symptoms. Long term treatment includes the use of herbal medicines which have a Pitta-reducing and mild laxative action. Panchkarma procedures which include full body massage and light fomentation and basti (enema) using medicated oils are also highly effective in treating as well as preventing acute episodes of this disease.

Depending upon the presentation of symptoms, medicines also need to be given to treat and prevent damage to the liver, kidneys, as well as the nervous system. Ayurvedic herbal treatment needs to be taken regularly for periods ranging from six months to a year, depending upon the severity of the condition and associated complications. Once the patient achieves a complete remission of symptoms, medicines can be gradually tapered and then stopped altogether. The frequency of Panchkarma procedures can also be gradually reduced proportionately. Overall, most patients need to be monitored for a couple of years in order to prevent further attacks and/or relapses of the condition. Diet control is very important in preventing or aggravating attacks. Adequate modifications in lifestyle also need to be strictly implemented. All the known precipitating factors for this condition need to be avoided in order to prevent acute episodes and relapses. Ayurvedic herbal treatment, combined with preventive measures, can thus go a long way in successfully treating acute porphyria as well as managing the medical condition on a long-term basis.

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Why Stress Is The Silent Killer

There’s no doubt that twenty-first century living is filled with stress. Our jobs are demanding, our roads are crowded, and even our entertainment is fast paced. Stress comes in many packages, but the overall effect on our lives is easy to spot. There are so many physical and emotional symptoms associated with stress that it has been called the silent killer. What is it about stress that would make it a silent killer, and what can we do to counteract it?

Stress comes in several different types. There are exciting, good things that happen to us, such as getting married or getting a new job. While these things make us happy, they are also changes in our lives. In addition, we have sudden, bad types of stressors, such as a fight with our kids or losing our job. And then there are the day-in, day-out types of stressors, such as money problems, an unhappy marriage, or chronic illness. When we talk about the stress in our lives, we usually are referring to the sum total of the effect on us of all these types of stress.

People are wired to respond to emergency stress with a rush of adrenalin. For instance, if you had a vicious dog lunge at you, your heart would beat fast and you’d immediately either grab something to fight it off with or turn and run. This is called the “fight or flight” response. During this physiological response, your mind is probably not thinking very logically, but your body is ready to respond quickly.

While this flight or fight response is certainly appropriate and useful in some situations, it really doesn’t have much value in helping us deal with the kind of stress we experience in the twenty-first century. It tends to leave us with digestive upsets, tense muscles, overwhelmed brains, and taxed cardiovascular systems. In short, stress might be killing you! You might not be aware of it, though, so stress is a silent, sneaky sort of killer.

Reducing stress, even in today’s world, is a real possibility. In fact, it is a virtual necessity. Smart people take care of themselves physically and mentally. Adding stress management to your daily goals is a good idea if you are under a lot of pressure from various aspects of your life. And these days, who isn’t?

Stress management consists of getting enough rest, eating a nutritious diet, and getting moderate gentle exercise. Specific nutrients that can nourish the nervous system from the ravages of stress include the B-complex of vitamins, calcium, and magnesium. Some herbs that can help are skullcap, St. John’s Wort, and chamomile. If getting to sleep is a problem, you might try melatonin or valerian.

Sleep is absolutely essential to good health and stress reduction, although not every person needs the recommended seven to eight hours. Most do, however. Over-the-counter sleep aids made from the drug, diphenhydramine, will help you get to sleep, but the sleep will probably not be as restful as natural sleep. Use it as a last resort.

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4 Vitamins for PMDD and Herbal Supplements

There are a number of ways that you can help to combat the symptoms of PMDD to reduce the mood changes and physical pains. One of these ways is to include some vitamins for PMDD that help your body combat these issues without the dangerous side effects of pharmaceutical drugs. While there are a wide range of vitamins and herbal supplements that can help, below are three that have been shown to make major impacts on PMDD symptoms fast.

Magnesium – Taking between 250 and 350 milligrams of magnesium daily can greatly reduce the symptoms of PMDD. This can help to boost your mood, improve the quality of your sleep, reduce cramping and pain, and can even reduce stress levels!

Vitamin B-6 – B-6 can help reduce many symptoms of PMDD as well. You will find that a B-complex supplement or 100 mg B-6 supplement can go a long way towards alleviating dysphoria as well as other common issues with premenstrual dysphoric disorder, such as water retention and cramping.

Vitamin E – Taking a Vitamin E supplement each day can prove to be quite beneficial. This vitamin has strong antioxidant properties, which help it to alleviate many physical symptoms. Many people also find that Vitamin E can help greatly reduce anxiety cause or exacerbated by PMDD.

Valerian Root – While this is quite a pungent smelling herb, it has been shown to be very effective at controlling PMDD symptoms. Valerian is shown to have remarkable properties in terms of helping to eliminate stress and anxiety, reducing mood swings and helping many people to get a better night’s rest.

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Video Game Induced Depersonalization

There is a strong correlation between feelings of anxiety, panic, depersonalization/derealization, and the constant use of video games. This is a deduction based upon thorough and extensive research and study.

The facts are there and continue to prove themselves out. Doctors now believe that electromagnetic fields (EMF’s) result in anxiety, depersonalization, derealization, depression, panic attacks, irritability and a long list of physically related illnesses.

Electromagnetic Fields (EMF’s) are found in fluorescent lighting known as Compact Fluorescent Lights (CFL’s) and they have a strong effect on emotions. These same EMF’s cause adrenal glands to secrete adrenaline and cortisol, two anxiety and depersonalization related hormones which wreak havoc on every part of the central nervous system. Exposure to EMF’s also create a decrease in brain hormones such as serotonin, norepinephrine and dopamine, which are closely linked to anxiety, depersonalization and depression when lowered. Those with even slight anxiety have often experienced panic attacks after entering stores lit by fluorescent lighting.

Video gaming is a two-fold exposure, leading to feelings of anxiety, depersonalization and derealization. There is a strong visual cue when exposed to computers for extended periods of time. This visual trigger or cue is caused by the same reaction one may experience when under fluorescent lighting. A computer or TV screen generally refreshes at 60 hertz (in which the screen is redrawn or refreshed 60 times per second). This creates a flicker affect, which is a visual cue and may trigger adrenaline and cortisol, resulting in intensified feelings of anxiety and or depersonalization/derealization. Prolonged use of video gaming is enough to bring forth this reaction. The individual is exposed to both EMF’s along with a strong visual trigger due to refresh flicker. The physical feelings are intensified by the stress and pressure associated with constant competitive gaming.

Another side of the problem arises when the individual spends a great deal of time living virtually rather than breaking the habit by entering life through daily routine and schedule, nutrition and activity. This prolongs the depersonalization even further.

It is important to recognize all sides of this situation and remedy it by following a very simple yet specific path to recovery.

1- EMF (electromagnetic fields) are found in computers, fluorescent lighting, cellular phones, appliances and power lines. If one is in close contact with any of these field producing electronics, for an extended period of time, they need to reconsider their habits.

2- Video Game Addiction is a real problem that must be addressed, especially if one experiences feelings of anxiety, depersonalization, derealization and panic. The mind becomes stuck in the trap of this addiction and symptoms frustrate and irritate. Fear exacerbates symptoms and one must unlearn these behaviors.

3- Depersonalization is a strong symptom of anxiety and is aided by very specific cognitive behavior skills, nutrition and a change in habits. It requires a precise system of recovery which must be strictly adhered to for best results.

4- The use of medications often exacerbate symptoms of depersonalization and anxiety. One is dealing with habits and behavior rather than physical illness.

Knowledge truly is power. Understanding is the first step in recovery. The only requirement is one’s willingness to look at the triggers of depersonalization and the readiness to follow a specific process, leading to full and permanent recovery.

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Sarcoidosis – The Best Natural Remedies For Sarcoidosis and Other ILD’s

Natural Remedies & Sarcoidosis Treatment:

After several years of medical treatment for lymphatic Sarcoidosis my husband & I found 3 natural remedies for Sarcoidosis that have kept him in remission for two years. The main factors to take into account with Sarcoidosis and many other autoimmune diseases are immune system imbalance & inflammation. Oxidative stress was found to be the underlying cause of Sarcoidosis and other ILD’s in 26 different published medical studies; so let’s look at some ways to reverse oxidative stress, lower inflammation and balance the immune system with regenerative nutrition instead of pharmaceutical drugs & get your body on the path to healing!

3 Natural Remedies For Sarcoidosis Treatment:

1. Broad Spectrum Antioxidants: eat a rainbow of fruits and vegetables. Raw fruits and vegetables are very high in antioxidants which fight oxidation. They are excellent natural remedies for Sarcoidosis providing live enzymes which balance your digestive system (where 70-80% of your immune system is), lower inflammation & boost the immune system.

Some of the most powerful natural remedies for Sarcoidosis are quercetin (found in apples & onions), resveratrol (found in the skin of red wine grapes, peanuts & Japanese Knotweed) & tumeric (a spice used for cooking). Jack started taking one supplement with all of these and about 40 more powerful natural ingredients to reverse his symptoms of Sarcoidosis.

Sarcoidosis is the formulation of granulomas, non-cancerous tumors of mutated cells that can form in any system in the body. These mutated cells become deformed & start stealing electrons from healthy cells. This chain reaction is not broken until an antioxidant comes along and gives our cell an electron to stop the process and start repair.

2. Knock Out Inflammation: Mother Nature’s Best Anti-inflammatory is a natural nutrient found in brown seaweed, called Fucoidan. This nutrient is an absolutely amazing polysaccharide. In clinical trials it boosted the immune system by as much as 400% in only 12 days. This one nutrient was vital to my husband’s recovery. Within 3 weeks his pain, vertigo and inflammation was noticeably less. I have several clients using this natural remedy for sarcoidosis, so far they report less pain (a couple even NO pain), less inflammation, ease in breathing, no cramping, more energy, less coughing, no more chronic bronchitis.

3. Boost Your Immune System: Fucoidan, as I said above, is the very best immune booster. When is comes to fighting Sarcoidosis you need to remember that this is an autoimmune disease. Treating the symptoms will never cure the disease. So balancing, boosting & building the immune system will reverse many, if not all of the symptoms of Sarcoidosis. There are many natural remedies for Sarcoidosis treatment but another one that also helps naturally boost the immune system is star anise. Tamiflu is derived from Star Anise (it was so powerful the pharmaceutical companies synthesized it into a drug they could prescribe and make a fortune).

When the immune system starts attacking itself there is something majorly wrong and most of the time 1 autoimmune disease will lead to several others. Many people with Sarcoid also have diabetes, arthritis, lupus, CFS, etc. etc. We must treat the root cause instead of give it a name and write a lifetime prescription.

With autoimmune diseases our own immune system has turned on us – thus, we must regulate, repair & regenerate a healthy immune system that repairs damage rather than causes it. Millions of deformed cells will cause tumors or clusters of mutated and inflamed cells, thus Sarcoidosis. To find out more and get testimonials from clients about the most efficacious supplements and natural remedies for Sarcoidosis contact me or go to Sarcoidosis Treatment. My husband has been in remission for 24 months. Hear his story as well as many others & learn more about healing Sarcoidosis naturally.

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Stress and Internal Conflict: Heal Yourself With Forgiveness

All stress, regardless of the source, will undermine our wellbeing if left unchecked. The accumulated stress can eventually lead to conditions such as anxiety, insomnia, high blood pressure, heart disease, cancer, stroke, ME/chronic fatigue and depression, to name but a few. So, any steps we can take to reduce our stress will be beneficial.

What many people do not realise, is that much of their stress comes from conflicts within their minds. Think of your mind as an iceberg. The part of it above the water is your conscious mind. This is where you hold your ideals and principles, where you make your everyday decisions and hold your religious and political beliefs. This is the part of your mind that you are aware of. The larger portion under the surface is the hidden world of your subconscious mind. The subconscious is the land of dreams. It has its own agenda which is often in direct conflict with what you want consciously. Each and every conflict results in stress, and every source of stress undermines your strength.

The Poison of Unforgiveness

One major source of such conflict is unforgiveness. Often, we say that we have forgiven someone, but that is only believed by your conscious mind. More often than not, your subconscious mind is refusing to forgive and has even vowed to hate the perpetrator forever!

So, what effect does this have? It’s very simple. Every time your conscious mind and subconscious mind disagree on an issue, there is conflict. Think of it like computer software with a bug in it. It is impossible for the conflict to be resolved, because part of you will never be happy with the outcome.

For example, consciously you might think, “I forgive my sister for breaking my doll.” Meanwhile, your subconscious has filed, “I vow to hate my sister forever for destroying my doll.” It is impossible to resolve both these programmes at the same time. You either forgive someone, or you don’t. You cannot do both. The mental programme therefore runs in a continuous, never-ending loop, which uses up a huge amount of energy and produces mental and emotional stress. In the case of this example, the conflict may have been running for thirty, forty or fifty years! Even if you aren’t thinking about the incident, on a deeper level, your mind is still struggling with the conflict. Imagine how many conflicts like this you are holding within your brain right now. These internal conflicts produces stress, and lots of it!

Forgiveness Exercise

When you want to forgive someone do the following exercise. The wording is designed to act in a specific way, so make sure you follow the steps carefully.

  1. Close your eyes, bring to mind the person and incident you want to forgive.
  2. Now, focus on your heart energy. As you breathe, feel that energy getting stronger and mentally let it expand out of your body, connecting with the energy of the Universe.
  3. Ask the Universe to show you the highest perspective of the incident. Wait and let the response come from the Universe – this will feel like a warm energy moving through your heart and body.
  4. Now, ask the Universe to explain to your cells that you have learnt all you needed from that unforgiveness. Wait and let the response come from the Universe again.
  5. Then, ask the Universe to teach your cells what it feels like for it to be possible to forgive this person. Again visualise or feel the energy responding to your request.
  6. Now, ask the Universe to show you how much forgiving will benefit you and your life. Let the healing flow through you.
  7. Finally, ask the Universe to teach you what it feels like to have forgiven them completely. Once again, allow the energy of the Universe to flow through your body, healing anything that is necessary. Make sure that all the energy has stopped moving before you open your eyes.

This sequence of healing energies and understandings will soften the old blocked unforgiveness, and enable it to disperse. Once the unforgiveness is gone, the mental conflict will dissolve and that stress will be released permanently.

Everything you can do to free yourself from accumulated stress will be good for you. I recommend that look back through your life and do some tidying up. Whenever you think about an incident which upset you or made you angry in your past, focus on it for a few seconds and see if you feel the old emotion surfacing again. If you do, then you need to forgive. Simply take yourself through the forgiveness exercise to shift the negative energy.

It is also really helpful if you take the Bach Flower Remedies of Holly and Willow. These clear deep-seated anger and bitterness which you have probably been storing for years, and cleanse the unforgiveness from your cellular memory.

It really is true that forgiveness is a blessing for both parties. Not only does it show love by releasing the perceived wrongs of the past, but it also increases the wellbeing of the person who forgives. Even if it seems hard to do, it is worth the effort.

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A Possible Lupus Cure That Begins With Healthy Digestion

Even today, many lupus sufferers are told by medical experts ‘diet doesn’t matter’. They are also told there is ‘no cure for lupus’.

In addressing the issue of diet, if what you eat matters when you are healthy, then what you eat when you’re ill is not only important it’s essential. So much so that it can make, or break your health and quality of life.

Another falsehood is that lupus can’t be healed. Being someone who has healed lupus I beg to differ, and I’m not the only one who is now lupus-free. At minimum, symptoms of lupus can be greatly reduced with a significant return to a better quality of life if the appropriate steps are taken. That starts with your diet.

It’s said by many in the scientific community that at least 80 percent of your immune system is affected by your digestive tract. Therefore, it’s the first line of defence you must work with to get your lupus symptoms under control.

A powerful way to support your digestion is to ensure your body has the ability to absorb, therefore utilize the nutrients from your food. Two sources that support this are digestive enzymes, and probiotics.

What are probiotics?

Probiotics are living microorganisms that work to support the microflora in your GI (gastrointestinal) tract. The word probiotics in Greek means ‘for life’.

One of its main functions is to support digestion and processing waste. (Now consider the term ‘antibiotics’ and it’s function). Probiotics are also commonly used to help prevent diarrhea by replacing the lost healthy bacteria, often caused by antibiotic use. They nourish, rebuild and provide a protective barrier of the intestinal lining and restore good bacteria to the bowel.

What are digestive enzymes?

Enzymes are energized protein molecules necessary for all life. They turn the food we eat into the energy we use in our body.

Digestive enzymes interact and work synergistically with vitamins, minerals, water and other nutrients to perform vital roles and do not change or get consumed in the process. They are responsible for running every function of the body such as digestion, cell/tissue/organ repair, maintaining the bones, skin, muscles, and nerves, plus energy production, and brain stimulation. Without these our body would not be able to sustain life.

Where Does the Body Get Enzymes?

Enzymes are secreted in the gastrointestinal tract and found in raw foods.

Eating a diet rich in raw foods helps the digestive process and therefore reduces the body’s need to secrete its own. If your body has to rely on its own enzymes when consuming cooked and processed foods, more stress is placed on your body and pancreas. Therefore, less energy is available for other important processes such as rebuilding and replacing damaged cells and tissues, which can reduce the immune systems effectiveness.

“The medical profession tells us that all disease is due to a lack or imbalance of enzymes. Our very lives are dependent upon them!”

Dr. DicQie Fuller

The Consequences of Incomplete Digestion

When food molecules are not digested properly and broken down to their smallest form, the body may view them as a foreign substance to the body and attack, causing inflammatory conditions and immune sensitivity. This is similar to the autoimmune response in lupus, which can result in symptoms such as arthritis, not to mention food allergies, digestive issues, fatigue, muscle pain, heart disease, asthma and migraines.

Studies have shown that for a number of chronic illnesses, such as lupus, arthritis, diabetes, allergies, skin disease, immune deficiencies, cancer (and more) decreased enzyme levels have been found.

Benefits of supplementing your body with digestive enzymes and probiotics are many, they include:

  • Increase nutrient absorption
  • Promote vitamin synthesis
  • Inhibit disease causing organisms
  • Improve digestion
  • Prevent stomach upset and reduce constipation
  • Improve allergy resistance
  • Help carry away toxins
  • Assimilate fats
  • Purify the blood
  • Increase white blood cell activity
  • Support the endocrine system (hormones in the body)
  • Balance cholesterol and triglyceride levels
  • Eliminate yeast
  • Increase energy levels
  • Help clean and dislodge accumulated decay of the colon
  • Help kill viruses and parasites
  • Help free up energy from digestion for other essential healing functions

Healing Lupus with Healthy Digestion

Many alternative health care practitioners believe all health issues are related in some way to the process of digestion. In addition to eating easy to digest foods, you may benefit from supplementing your diet with digestive enzymes and probiotics.

Everything in your body is dependent on nutrition, and its proper absorption. It does no good to select highly nutritious foods if their nutrients are not being fully absorbed. If you are experiencing digestive issues, it is a good idea to see a health specialist as well.

With plenty of healthy enzymes that assure greater levels of digestion and absorption of your food you will see a difference in your health. The potential for a lupus cure through diet should not be overlooked, and it is my hope that doctors will take up the care of their patients with natural modalities for lupus and other disease treatment in the future.

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The Lucinda Bassett Attacking Anxiety and Depression System

The Lucinda Bassett program includes:

o 16 Audio Cassettes or CDs

o 3 Coaching Videos or DVDs

o A 250-Page, 15 Chapter Guidebook

o 16 Handy Reference Cards

Although I tend to prefer downloadable items (I don’t like to wait) the Lucinda Basset program is worth the wait. The package definitely delivers value; it is professionally put together and is quite impressive.

Ok, there’s some slick packaging… what’s it got under the hood?

The Attacking Anxiety and Depression program was developed by Lucinda Bassett and Phillip Fisher, M.D. from over 17-years of Midwest Center therapy groups.

The program is based on cognitive-behavioral modification. In a nutshell, it is intended to teach you to recognize the thoughts, behaviors, and reactions CAUSING your distress and then show you how to change these negative, anxiety-producing habits.

A lot of what has made this program so popular and effective is the way it is structured and presented.

The methodology of using an audio/video teaching format allows you to listen to the material over and over, at your own pace. The ultimate goal of the program is to teach you to rely on your own skills through the recovery.

The Lucinda Basset workbook, CDs and DVDs show you how your current thinking and reacting are causing your stress, anxiety and depression and then it shows you a different way to look at life and how to react to the stressors in your life.

The program is very deliberate, step-by-step, week-by-week, showing you how to begin dismantling your old destructive patterns and replacing them with more healthy, compassionate habits.

Attacking Anxiety and Depression is Clinically validated and used in hospitals, clinics, universities, by a network of psychologists, psychiatrists, therapists, and by the number one ranked HMO in the country, Group Health.

Either Lucinda Bassett is just an incredible marketer or she actually has something “real” going… she has the second longest running infomercial of all time and has been featured on Oprah, Regis, Montel Williams, Maury Povich, The View with Barbara Walters, Reverend Schuller’s Hour of Power and has been published in Prevention, Family Circle, Longevity, The Journal of Clinical Psychology, and more.

You can try the program by Lucinda Bassett free for 30 days

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