Reconcile the inner wounds for better health

beauty

At some point in mid-adulthood, most of us recognize that some life wounds will never completely disappear and we consider the possibility that they may be part of a life design that is greater than our own personal intentions. We begin to accept life on its own terms and, by doing so, we may well open up to the will of something greater than ourselves.

Our challenge, then, is to take out those piles of emotional garbage that either regularly overflow or constantly clutter our thinking — the walls of garbage that isolate us from others or that drive us to overeat or over drink, overwork or overspend. Many of us call upon prayer, psychotherapy, or meditation to heal these hurts — and such practices do help. However, in my work at the University of Hull (England) developing a weight loss program called The Solution, I discovered two simple tools that enable us to more quickly clear the garbage from the past. These tools and The Solution program have been adopted by 27 hospitals nationwide because they bring balance within and turn off the drive to go to excess with food, weight, activity, and other issues. Our research at the University of Hull shows that the changes the program brings are lasting; people using it keep off the weight they lose, an outcome that even high-risk treatments such as fasts and surgery have never shown.

Let me share these tools with you so you can experiment for yourself.

The Thinking Journal

When you become aware of a past hurt, loss, or change, take out a piece of paper or create a new file in your computer and write a very clear description of precisely what happened. Tell the story by stating the facts clearly and simply without any apparent emotion. You’ll notice that by being absolutely factual and keeping at bay any expression of anger, sadness, fear, or guilt, those feelings mushroom inside. Then, when the cognitive part of this process is relatively complete, we can fully express the feelings.

The Feelings Letter:

The next step after stating the facts is to express the feelings they arouse in a letter you don’t intend to send. In Solution training, we’ve found that these feelings do not come randomly, but in a natural flow and order. It may help you to look for this progression: anger, sadness, fear, and guilt. What is important is that you reach inside yourself as you consider each feeling, wait for that feeling to appear red-hot within your physical being, then express it in the most raw, primitive, and uncensored fashion — as if you were four years old. It sometimes helps to shout and cry each feeling verbally. Then pause and wait fo r the next feeling to appear, which it will. Again, feel it in your body, then throw it out the way a modern artist would throw paint on a canvas.

A Crowbar For The Deep Stuff:

The letter should make you feel a lot better, but if they don’t — if you’ve got some deeply wedged garbage that won’t come out — you may need to take a crowbar to it. What you do is to move from your heart to your head and, like an archeologist, examine the garbage you’ve thrown so far. Chances are that what anchors the garbage is an expectation. So write it down. Now ask yourself, is my expectation reasonable? If you’re like many people, you’ll look at your expectation, realize that is actually ridiculous or impossible, and you’ll burst out laughing. Then write down some expectations that are reasonable, and the rewards you’ll get from them. You’ll be back in balance and on the path to joy.

Go ahead and try these tools the next time you’re overwhelmed by your own emotional garbage. A couple of letters will not empty a lifetime accumulation of emotional garbage, but you will find that you can bring yourself back into balance. Even a few letters and a bit of prying can move a lot of garbage.

My Experience with the Natural Hair Lifestyle and Homeopathy

For many older African British women, no matter what we do, there are seasons when our natural hair simply will not cooperate. I have found, during such times, that singing, or saying the lyrics to certain songs, are what gets me through.

To put you in perspective, we black women, for the most part, use many unhealthy hair products in the search of taming our unruly curls and kinks. In fact the women’s hair care industry in the United States is made up of an 80% black-female consumer base! Here in the United Kingdom that figure drops to 30%, which is still a huge figure considering that the black population in the United Kingdom barely reaches 5% of the total population.

For those of us black women seeking natural health, we have to completely wean ourselves off the nasty hair products that are targeted at us for unruly curls and instead use natural hair products,  nutrition and supplementation (best through homeopathy) to achieve healthy hair. In case you’re wondering, men are also affected in that they are prone to using chemical-full hair products that damage their health. In the case of black men, however, they only need a short amount of hair length to be able to wear natural mens hairstyles like cornrows and dreadlocks which are popular hairstyles among black men. In our case (black women), we need to invest way more time and energy into growing our manes longer so as to be able to tam the coiling effect that shrinks the length of our curly kinky hair. I may write more on the subject of hair growth for natural hair in the future, but for now, I’d rather post my personal experience in this first blog post of mine here.

My husband has cut my hair completely off 5 times (known as the “big chop”). Each time, my kinky curly mane grew to a certain point, and then it began breaking again. At first I was disappointed, and I even cried on a few occasions. I recalled James Brown singing; “If you don’t get it the first time, back up and try it again. This gave me the courage to try yet again.

I knew the second time, I had it right, and was singing Shalamar’s “Second time around”. I kept repeating the chorus of, “Not like the first time, not like the first time.” It was all to no avail. And I thought to myself, so much for positive confession.

Surely the third time would be the charm, and I remembered a song by Mel and Tim, and I began singing, “Starting all over again is gonna be rough on us, but we’re gonna make it”. Starting all over again is gonna be hard, but I pray that the Lord will help us make it”.

Growing up I had shoulder length hair, but once I began wearing it in an afro hairstyle, and later I began using relaxers the trouble began. In 1997, my hair was once again shoulder length, without me doing anything special. Shortly after that however, stress that led to a diagnosis of panic and anxiety attacks caused me to begin pulling my hair, until it was bald in spots (i.e. trichotillomania). I’ve talked with David of covering the topic of trichotillomania in the future in this blog, as my own experience has show that homeopathy was an excellent remedy for the balding spots!

To give you an idea, this is what trichotillomania looks like. Please bear in mind that this is not me but instead a clinical case from the condition being very severe.

Trichotillomania hair loss in women

While my hair was long in the back, I had short and bald spots just below the crown. My husband cut it twice more, but the same thing continued to happen. So now my husband has cut my hair 5 times, and either I twist and pull it until it breaks, or it gets to it’s plateau and stops growing.

I have kept photos where you see me with a bald head and my hair as it grew. What you cannot see is the breakage, and locking that took place behind my head. I was so disappointed to have to cut more than 15 months worth of growth, yet again for a 5th time, but I had no choice.

If you find that your natural hair will not cooperate, because it thins, breaks, you pull it out, or perms that went wrong, please do not despair. Find a song to sing, and start over again. Analyze your steps and maintenance routine, and you will surely find out what you need to do or stop doing.

Our hair changes as we age, and that is a factor we must keep in mind. As we get older, we also no longer have the time and in some cases finances to maintain our hair as we did in our youth. I realized, I was not always keeping my ends clipped, or moisturizing as I knew I should. I also didn’t make the most of the homeopathic solutions available at the time for improve the health of my hair. I was discovering homeopathy at the time and it was a miracle that I got to learn more and more about the wonders that homeopathy can do for one’s hear and overall well-being.

Once my hair was mid length, I found I was trying to force it into a ponytail. This seems to be a trait of black women. I guess a pony tail is validation that our hair has grown. What I do not understand is why we cannot wait until we have more than enough for a ponytail before we try to wear one.

The main point is to accept your unique hair. Do not compare yourself with others. If you have to cut your hair multiple times, just keep going until you get it right. Read blogs, magazines and talk to other women dealing the same issues.

Patricia

patricia blog

Welcoming our new author Patricia to the team

I’m happy to announce that we have a new author joining our team, Patricia. She strives for a natural lifestyle and has used homeopathy to enhance her life. She also has experience with using homeopathy for hair care in particular, so I believe that her contributions will offer a new angle for seeing what homeopathy can do, and not just in fighting diseases.

We will be publishing her first article today, so please join me in welcoming Patricia to the team here at Hominf!

David

Healthy sleeping aids for a better sleep and lifestyle

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Sleeping is crucial to overall well-being. It allows our bodies and our minds to recover, There is evidence that going even two nights without proper sleep may weaken the immune system considerably. Lack of sleep slows reaction time and affects alertness, mood, hand-eye\ coordination, and short term memory. It may also cause weight gain because the body craves extra calories to create more energy without enough sleep.

Healthy Sleep aids and tips

Resist the temptation to take over-the-counter sleeping pills. Research shows that about half of the people who habitually use sleeping pills experience worsening insomnia. Moreover, these medications can cause a wide range of side effects,

Instead of a sleeping pill, consider Valerian root, California poppy, hops, kava kava, passionflower, and skullcap in capsule or extract form. A recent study found that the combination of Valerian and hops extract improved sleep for insomnia sufferers, In the evening each subject took two tablets, each of which contained 250 mg valerian extract and 60 mgs hops extract.

Also consider taking nutritional supplements, such as brewer’s yeast, calcium, and magnesium. Deficiencies of B vitamins are associated with insomnia: Take 1 tsp (or 1500 mg) of brewers yeast- a good source of the B family–one hour before you go to bed. Recent studies have shown that melatonin, a hormone normally produced in the body at night, may help to stabilize the body’s sleep cycle.

To set the stage for sleep, try aromatherapy: lavender oil, neroli, and ylang-ylang help promote sleep. Add a few drops of pure essential oil to a hot bath or massage oil. You can also light a lavender-scented candle, or add oil to a diffuser in your bedroom.

Personal update: we’re getting married!

Hello David here!

We want to keep this site relevant to alternative medicine, but we also want to give make this site a place where you can feel at home. This a little bit of knowing about us running this site I guess is always a good thing as this site isn’t just bytes and CPU :-)

I wanted to let you all know that Carla and I are getting married! I proposed to her yesterday and she said “YES”. We have been dating for 4 years and this was the next step in our relationship, plus I know she was waiting for me to say it as she has been wanting to get married for ages!

Life is all about sharing moments of happiness. Personal relationships make you happy, love makes you happy and health makes you happy. I can say without a doubt that the “alternative medicine” field (including homeopathy and Feng Shui) has played a primordial role in my life and in keeping me healthy and tuned in to living in this busy and stress-full society!

Much love, dear friends.

David and Carla

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Defining Fitness in the context of holistic health

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Within the spectrum that defines alternative medicine and homeopathy, fitness is one of those fields that is slowly gaining traction as part of the holistic medical approach used by both homeopaths and naturopaths. The American Physical Therapy Association approaches fitness by looking at six key elements: Aerobic Capacity, Body Composition, Body Balance, Muscular Strength, Body Structure, Muscular Flexibility.

Fitness is defined by physical therapists as a state of optimal health in which the body’s systems are conditioned to withstand physical stress and operate without injury. Each of the six key elements plays an important role in total body fitness. These are outlined below:

AEROBIC CAPACITY

This deals with the body’s ability to transport oxygen via the cardiovascular system. This is usually improved by exercising at your target heart rate (60 to 80 percent of your maximum heart rate). Most people calculate this by using the following formula- (220 – age = maximum heart rate, then max heart rate x 60%= target heart rate). Thirty minutes of aerobic exercise per day is the recommended amount in the target heart rate range.

BODY COMPOSITION

This is the ratio of body fat to lean body mass. Ideal body fat varies from person to person, but the general ideal range is 10-15 percent of total body mass for males, and 15 to 22 percent for females. Athletes usually have much less body fat than these numbers! Don’t be discouraged if you gain a few pounds when you begin a fitness program- it just means you are increasing your muscle mass!

BODY BALANCE

Neurological testing evaluates the balance system controlled by your brain, inner ear, and sensory systems of the body. Even a minor balance problem can make you at risk for injury- especially in sports. If this is a problem, your physical therapist can give you some exercises to help improve your balance and total body performance.

MUSCULAR STRENGTH

Your muscles should not only be flexible, but they should be able to exert force and control movements. Strengthening should be selected to condition the muscles you will use to perform your activity of choice. For example, if you are a runner, your main strengthening focus would be your legs.

BODY STRUCTURE

This deals with the actual alignment of the body. Even a small imbalance in the way you stand may lead to injury over time. Generally, exercises are recommended to offset weak areas, and stretch out tight areas.

MUSCULAR FLEXIBILITY

Your muscles should be flexible to allow full pain-free range of motion of all your joints. Muscles should be able to lengthen without much effort to allow you to do all the activities of the day. A shortened or inflexible muscle is more susceptible to stress and injury, and should be addressed with your general fitness program.

There are several other factors that affect fitness in addition to those listed above. Smoking, poor nutrition, alcohol, caffeine, and a family health history that includes diabetes, heart disease, or high blood pressure will affect your general fitness. Some of these factors are controllable through change in habits, while some may require medication. These should all be considered when beginning a fitness program.

How do you get started?

Decide what activities you like to do and map out a plan to be able to do them several times a week. Consult a physical therapist that specializes in Orthopedic and sports physical therapy. Ask your therapist to give you a fitness evaluation to determine your current fitness level, and develop a plan to improve your present condition. You may emphasize one or two of the six elements of fitness in your program, but remember fitness is a total body approach! You should consult your physician prior to beginning a program.

Moving forward in the disability health space

We keep an eye on all related to disabilities in both Europe and the USA. As I have mentioned about homeopathy in society, we are aiming to integrate our discipline into the different fields of western medicine. Homepathy in Europe is slowly moving in the right direction, and one of our supporting public organization is the European Disability Forum which creates a resource for planning and implementation of pro-disability measures. As such, we’d like to post here too their welcoming news on their new Executive Director who does also back the proposal from the homeopathic bodies in Europe.

It is with great pleasure that I am announcing today the nomination of Nicola Bedlington as EPF Executive Director. Nicola is a skilled senior manager with strong European policy, advocacy, campaigning and fundraising skills. She currently is Head of the Secretariat of the Environment and School Initiative (an internation al government-based research network on school development and education for sustainable development. This network is set up by the OECD).

new pactNicola’s experience includes work for the European Disability Forum as Director from 1997 to 1999 (EDF is an umbrella NGO of 70 European organizations and 15 national councils of disabled people, set up in 1996 to promote equal opportunities and advance the human rights of the millions of disabled citizens in the EU). From 1991 to 2006, Nicola has also been a European Commission expert responsible for project evaluation and coordination of subsidies and a co-founder of the European Social Policy Platform. Nicola is also a freelance consultant. Nicola will effectively start working for EPF in June 1. I am sure you will join me in welcoming Nicola who will be a great asset to EPF.

At the same time I would also like to thank Annette Dumas for her support and dedicated work for EPF. Her support to me as the President, has made the hard work we have done possible. Annette is moving on to other functions with Alzheimer Europe at the end of March 2015, I wish her all the best in her new function and look forward to seeing her again in some of our meetings.

Vision of Health with Homeopathy in our society

We want to provide thoughtful, reasoned, responsible information by using homeopathy and all that it implies. Unfortunately, there are many gaps in our present understanding of the specifics of how to use homeopathy on a national scale.

lots of medicines

According to the former National Council Against Health Fraud, the goal is to, with other homeopathy websites, present articles and essays from many different opinion leaders in homeopathy. They may not always agree. Such is the nature of opinions. Additionally, we will be working with other homeopathic organizations to create emergency homeopathic assistance teams. It is our firm belief that homeopathy has much to offer in the immediate aftermath of a crisis as well as in the preparation for it. Further, homeopaths must be involved in the initial assessment if we are to rapidly determine the genus epidemicus that will aid in the quick containment of the inciting event. We welcome your input, ideas, and personal contacts with people who may be able to be influential in furthering the use of homeopathy for the health of the nation. Please visit this site often for new information as this effort evolves.

Homeopathy and the Health system

bottle with psychotropic remedyAt first glance, homeopathy seems implausible. The medicines (also known as remedies) are ultra-high dilution substances (in the range of 10-3 g/cc to over 10-100,000 g/cc) that counter-intuitively are observed to be more clinically effective with increasing dilution. An impediment to determining such a mechanism seems to be that many scientists have been unable to conceive of information transfer in biological systems at a sub-molecular level. Clearly the high dilution factor leads one to abandon theories at the molecular level and search in the areas of energy transfer. This field is not palatable to many conventional scientists, although in a technological age where we are surrounded by the imperceptible energy of radio, satellite, and cell-phone transmissions, it is time to get beyond such Newtonian thinking.

While the actual mechanism of action of homeopathic medicines has yet to be determined, it has long been theorized that the polarity of the molecular structure of the water used as diluent plays an important role. Recently reported research demonstrated that dissolved molecules instead of moving further apart with increasing dilution actually did the opposite and clumped together. Further research will be needed to elucidate this phenomenon. In the mean time, research into clinical applications for the current crisis facing U.S. public health using existing protocols for the evaluation of efficacy should be expedited. Although improvements in supportive care and the availability of antibiotics will save more lives now than in previous epidemics, this comes at significant cost. Based on previous experience, potentially billions of dollars may be saved by employing homeopathic methodology in the current crisis.

Having a great 2015!

We wish you all a great 2015 with plenty of health and fitness. Remember that alternative medicine and personal care has the answers for your health questions, and that nature has a supernatural way to health and energise.

Live life to the fullest!

David and Carla

dave and carla