25 of 25 people found the following review helpful
on July 9, 2011
It is true that the information in this book is available for free online to some extent, but this book is still a little gem. However you get this information, learning about how feeling worse does NOT always mean that you should stop doing what you are doing with your nutritional healing or detoxification program is absolutely vital if you are trying to improve a serious disease.
This is some information on healing reactions that I wrote in a recent article on the topic:
The idea that you would try a lot of different treatments one by one, discarding those that make you feel more ill and continuing with those which decrease symptoms or disability, seems like a 'no brainer.'
Unfortunately, due to something known as a 'healing reaction' the problem is not at all that simple.
Many different nutrients and therapies can cause problematic symptoms and side effects which are an indication that the treatment is not a good fit for you and should be discontinued. However, some supplements and therapies may also provoke symptoms which are not merely annoying side-effects but instead healing reactions that are a very good indication that the nutrient or therapy is working and doing what it is supposed to.
It may seem counter-intuitive but this means that feeling somewhat worse after starting a new treatment is not always a bad sign. Sometimes, it is a very good sign and even an essential sign that deep healing is occurring.
In his must-read (free) online article 'Deep Healing Versus Symptom Removal' Dr Lawrence Wilson writes,
'Deep healing is quite different from symptom removal. Symptom removal is the type of doctoring offered by the medical profession and by most holistic doctors as well. Symptoms are the focus, by and large, and the goal is to make them go away. The problem is that symptoms often point to deeper imbalances that are not usually not addressed. Deep healing is a much more profound process. It has to do with restoring the body to its former state of health. This means restoring its energy production system, its oxidation rate, its minerals ratios and much more. Symptom removal occurs as a "side effect" of these programs. Healing therefore usually takes longer and involves lifestyle changes as well. It is more work for both the client and the practitioner. Lifestyle, in fact, is always central and this is a good way to tell if your doctor is focused on symptoms or on deeper healing. In the long run, however, it saves time and lots of money, and may save your life as well.'
It is important that the symptoms from healing reactions remain at a level that the patient can handle however. Very intense healing reactions can be more than your body can cope with and can even be dangerous and potentially fatal in some cases. Patients with diseases such as M.E. patients in particular must go very slowly when it comes to treatments causing healing reactions. Slow and steady progress is the goal.
Healing reactions can be caused by treatments which boost antioxidant status, promote detoxification, the clearing of infections or which allow various enzyme reactions to take place which were not possible before or by anything that helps the body to function better and so to heal.
This includes high-dose vitamin C, iodine, magnesium, FIR sauna use, garlic (and other strongly antiviral substances), the anti-Candida diet, lymphatic drainage massage, probiotics, a vegetable juice regime and the supplementation of any important or essential nutrient that was previously at a very low level.
The symptoms of healing reactions can include muscle cramps and spasms, aches and pains, rashes, strange odours and tastes, heart palpitations and blood pressure changes, tiredness, gastrointestinal or bowel changes, foggy thinking, headache and nausea, or a worsening of the illness generally.
There are 3 basic principles in this type of medicine:
1. Get the good stuff in. Give your body the fuel and tools it needs to work at an optimum level. Good food, nutrients and all the proper vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. Make sure you aren't deficient in anything important as the different nutrients all work together.
2. Get the bad stuff out. Make sure your body can detoxify out all the toxic substances and toxic by-products of bodily processes properly. Stop as many toxins from getting in in the first place, and do a detoxification program to get rid of the ones you have. Stop doing or eating the things which cause inflammation and have a pro-oxidant effect, and so on.
3. Reduce your body's total load. The total load concept is that lessening the body's overall burden/work and stress level in one area, will improve health generally and improve the body's ability to heal because the body's total load (or burden) is lessened. Fixing one problem frees up bodily resources that can be then be used to help other parts of the body function getter or to heal.
As Andrew Saul PhD explains,
'Good nutrition and vitamins do not directly cure disease, the body does. You provide the raw materials and the inborn wisdom of your body makes the repairs. Someday healthcare without megavitamin therapy will be seen as we today see childbirth without sanitation or surgery without anaesthetic.'
It is a myth that orthomolecular, holistic and environmental medicine rejects science, is not backed up by evidence and research and is not scientific. Orthomolecular expert Abram Hoffer MD explains that it is in fact mainstream medicine, as it is most often practiced, that is not scientific. He writes,
'Modern medicine is not scientific, it is full of prejudice, illogic and susceptible to advertising. Doctors are not taught to reason, they are programmed to believe in whatever their medical schools teach them and the leading doctors tell them. Over the past 20 years the drug companies, with their enormous wealth, have taken medicine over and now control its research, what is taught and the information released to the public.'
In Detoxify or Die, Dr Sherry Rogers writes,
'I have to laugh when people ask me if I do alternative, herbal, acupuncture or holistic medicine. 'No,' I reply. 'We do state-of-the-art medicine. In other words, we find the biochemical, nutritional and environmental causes and cures rather than blindly drugging everything. Sure, herbs are gentler, safer and more physiologic than drugs and holistic medicine attempts to incorporate many diverse modalities, etc. But there is no substitute for finding the underlying biochemical causes and cures. This is real medicine. This is where medicine should and would have been decades ago, if it had not been abducted by the pharmaceutical industry.'
Drugs are essential for turning off certain bodily systems in emergencies, pain medications are essential for some patients, but they don't actually fix anything. They don't get to the cause. This type of medicine is well suited to emergency use to a large extent, but the same approach just isn't appropriate for chronic health problems and disease prevention.
To use a car analogy, all drugs do is turn off the 'no petrol/gas' light (the symptom) they do nothing whatsoever to actually GET more petrol etc. (the cause of the problem). As Dr Sherry Rogers writes,
'Drugs do not cure anything, they merely turn off poisoned and malfunctioning pathways. That is why their classifications are anti-inflammatory, ant-acid, beta-blockers, alpha-blockers, calcium channel blockers, angiotensin inhibitors or ACE inhibitors, HMG COA a reductase inhibitors (cholesterol-lowering drugs), selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors or SSRI, etc. And by not fixing the underlying problem, they allow it to worsen as the innocent patient accumulates side effects from the drug as well.'
The best news about this type of medicine is that much of the treatment is not disease specific, so you don't necessarily need to have doctors expert in your disease to help you make real progress with it.
It is important to note that what this book does not do is provide information on how to heal disease and how to get your healing reactions going. It really is just attempting to explain why healing reactions are an essential part of healing, how to cope with them, and why it is important not to suppress the symptoms of a healing reaction, and so on.
Fife does have a book on detoxification out and it is helpful to some extent, but I found it nowhere near as detailed and thorough as the books and websites listed below. It was good in parts but nowhere near the best book available on this topic, in my opinion.
To get good information on healing reactions for free online, check out the website of Dr Lawrence Wilson. To read books on this topic see books by Dr Lawrence Wilson, Dr Sherry Rogers and also books on the Gerson dietary plan for cancer and other diseases.
While it is true this book contains little new information than that contained in the above listed books and articles, having the information in a handy short book format seems very helpful - especially for patients that are are unwilling or unable to read large amounts of text. Understanding the basic principles of healing reactions is so important if you are very ill and as this book makes doing that just a little bit easier, I think it is a little gem!
Jodi Bassett, The Hummingbirds' Foundation for M.E. (HFME) and Health, Healing & Hummingbirds (HHH)