The Zen Corner

Science, Art, and Philosophy of Chiropractic


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Hyperactivity; Learning Disorders

“Chiropractic…Bringing out the best in you.

Chiropractors correct abnormalities of the intellect as well as those of the body. “

 

–D.D Palmer, Discoverer of Chiropractic
Doctors of chiropractic have long noticed chiropractic’s beneficial effects on those with neurological and emotional problems, especially children.
A Modern Epidemic
Learning disorders are just one of many neurological problems that affect children today. They include hyperactivity, attention deficit disorder (ADD), attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and minimal brain damage among others. The number of children diagnosed with these conditions is growing at a staggering rate, as medical historian Harris Coulter, Ph.D. has noted:
The American Psychiatric Association (Third Edition, revised 1987) publishes a guide to mental illnesses in this country, the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual, which devotes seventy pages to “Disorders Usually First Evident in Infancy, Childhood, or Adolescence.” The second edition in 1968 dealt with these disorders in only 3-1/2 pages. The first edition, 1952, did not mention them at all.
These disorders have received the appellation “developmental disabilities”. Probably the leading one is “dyslexia,” also called “minimal brain damage.” Another prominent one is “autism”. But there are many others. Probably twenty percent of American children—one youngster in five—suffers from a “developmental disability”. This is a stupefying figure…
Ritalin
The standard medical treatment for hyperactivity in children is amphetamine medications such as Ritalin, Dexedrine, and Cylert. Ritalin is classified as a schedule II substance by the FDA along with cocaine, morphine, opium, and methadone. Ritalin can have severe side effects, including arrested growth, increased heart rate, insomnia, loss of appetite, social withdrawal, irritability, moodiness and involuntary movements or sounds. In 1988, half-million children were prescribed stimulant drugs for ADD and ADHD. By 1997 the number was two million and it is expected to reach eight million b 2000. Interestingly, M.D.s in the U.S. prescribe five times the quantity of stimulants for children as M.D.s in other countries. Many parents are concerned about drugging their children for years and possible drug abuse and dependency. “Is there another way,” they ask?
The Cause of Learning Disorders?
Dr. Coulter and a growing number of professionals feel that many of the neurologically damaged are victims of childhood vaccinations:
A large proportion of the millions of U.S. children and adults suffering from autism, seizures, mental retardation, hyperactivity, dyslexia, and other shoots and branches of the hydra-headed entity called “developmental disabilities,” owe their disorders to one or another of the vaccines against childhood diseases.
Other causes of neurologic damage may be trauma to the head, severe burn, infectious diseases, accidents and falls.
What Can Chiropractic Do?
Chiropractors are trained to locate and correct vertebral subluxations—tiny distortions of spinal bones or vertebrae—that can irritate or stress the spine, discs, muscles, ligaments and nervous system.
Although not a treatment for neurological disorders, chiropractic care has given many children suffering from neurological disorders new hope. Chiropractors, parents and school officials have reported on the effectiveness of chiropractic care for children with many kinds of neurological conditions including learning disorders, hyperactivity, inability to concentrate and behavior problems.
For example, the Director of Psychoeducational and Guidance Services of College Station, Texas noted that of the 10,000 students referred to him in the previous decade, those who had received chiropractic care seemed to show the most benefit. He noticed that children failing their subjects and lacking motivation began passing their subjects, became highly motivated, and showed improved coordination and ability to participate in athletics after receiving chiropractic care. Some of the cases from his files included:

 

1.      High school student; non-motivated, negative, passive, nonverbal and failing in high school work despite placement in special classes. She was put on 20mg Ritalin. After chiropractic adjustments, the student was taken off Ritalin, began talking and expressing herself, and showed improved reading comprehension and reading speed.

 

2.      An eight-year-old boy who was extremely hyperactive, irritable and with severe behavior problems at home and school; grades were marginal to failing; on 70mg. of Ritalin/day with steadily diminishing results. After chiropractic care, Ritalin was discontinued and coordination was improved to the extent that the student became a Little League ball player. His attitude was excellent, grades were up and an average of one letter grade and behavior at home and school was exemplary.

 

3.      A student with a four-year history of marginal accomplishment in school was nervous, underweight and suffered from insomnia. Medication was briefly tried but the student’s emotional control became poor and he frequently wept. After chiropractic care, there was a marked reduction in nervousness and great improvement in emotional stability. His mother reported that his appetite was now normal and he began enjoying school during the last month.
Others have observed chiropractic’s effect on hyperactivity: “The majority of children…did, in fact, improve under specific chiropractic care.” Still, others have commented that spinal care may improve I.Q.
In one interesting story, chiropractors had taken care of 244 children in a Kentucky reform school. The teachers were so impressed that they signed a petition asking for a full-time chiropractor on staff: “Not only did [the students] improve in health, but also in their school work as pupils…there have been a marked improvement in their moral life.” However, please remember that not all children respond the same under chiropractic care.
Exactly how subluxation correction affects brain function is not known. Some theorize that chiropractic care improves blood flow to the brain, others feel it lessens anxiety and promotes overall improved well-being or enhances brain function while others feel it interrupts unhealthy nerve reflexes in the spinal cord. Obviously, the final word on the mechanism is not yet in.
In Conclusion
Working in concert with nutritionists, homeopaths, CranioSacral therapists, psychologists, medical doctors and other healers, including chiropractors, parents can give their children every chance for optimal life expression.
If seriously afflicted students have been found to benefit from chiropractic care, could not “average” children benefit as well? Perhaps chiropractic care could help “average” students become “above average”? Increase their IQ a few points? Improve their reading skills a little and give them an edge in alertness, coordination, and speech? Why not discover the benefits of chiropractic for your own children?
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Aging Process Part 1

Aging can be considered in a number of ways. Each year, we get a little older. This is chronological age. Biological age is a different scale. We all know of someone 50 who looks and acts like they are 70 and at the same time someone who looks and acts like they are in their late 30’s. It is to simple to say that genetics is the answer.
One author stated that as we age we get the 4D’s. These are a disability, discomfort, drugs, and doctors. In general, as we age we see a decrease in muscle and bone mass or density, along with a decrease in water retention and an increase in fat mass.
While years go by steadily, our bodies age at different rates depending on how we have taken care of the different systems or organs of our body.
Most people recognize the signs of aging between 40 and 50, however, the seeds of this aging process start decades before.
Let’s talk about what happens to our bodies in these years.
First, our brain will shrink slightly with an accompanying loss of cognitive skills. We become a little more forgetful and wonder if we are getting Alzheimer’s.
If we don’t already need glasses, our vision begins to suffer as our eye losses its elasticity as well as its ability to accommodate to lower light and distinguish colors especially yellow and blue.
Our hearing begins a gradual decline in the loss of the ability to hear high tones or to listen well when there is a lot of background noise. We also slowly lose our sense of taste and smell which can trick us into wanting way more salt that we should eat to season our food.
Our skin loses its elasticity and becomes thinner. Add to these changes general decrease in functionality to our internal organs like the heart, lungs, kidneys, liver and a general decrease in the ability to produce digestive enzymes and you have a rough idea of the aging process.
Enough of what we all know – as we age we degenerate.
Why does this happen?
There are many theories behind the aging process. The first centers on chance and includes the topics of oxidation and free radicals. These produce free electrons that attach themselves to our molecular structure and create most if not all of the degenerative conditions found in the body. Another example of this type of aging process is that caused by excess sugar intake that binds to proteins. This glucose or sugar binding then disrupts the ability of the cell to replicate or repair itself. The ravages of diabetes are an example of this type of aging process.
The other great classification is one best described as evolutionary or part of the grand design of nature. This one was started by a phenomenon known as the Hayflick factor. This experiment showed that cells would reproduce themselves about 50 times and then die off. This gave rise to the concept that we have an aging clock in every cell of our body. However, experiments showed that with proper nutritional support, this self-limiting replication limit was easily surpassed. This theory was replaced by one centered around shortening of telomeres. These are the endings of the chromosomes that give the blueprints that our cells need to replicate themselves.
These are just a couple of interesting theories and lot of research in them, but the most important fact in aging is the imporoper functioning nervous system. Even if we have lowered the sugar intake and have done nutritional support, if the nervous system is not operating at 100% then we will only get limited results. Through Chiropractic, the nervous system and alignment of the spine is 100%, then our results will have no limits. Chiropractic will be restoring the function of the body and preventing degenerative joints in the spine to last longer as you age.
What are the signs of premature aging?
You cannot always tell a book by its cover as the saying goes, but you can by its content.
The earliest sign is a lack of vitality. You lose energy quickly and no longer have a sense of well being. In general, you do not enjoy life as much as you used to.
Next to go is your libido. That sex drive of your youth is gone or dramatically reduced.
You start to get muscle aches for no apparent reason and it takes longer to heal from injuries. Along with this, your immune system is weaker and you get more colds and flues and them last longer.
Your figure starts to change; you will either lose or gain over 20 pounds.
Finally, depression and anxiety are on the rise and your whole mental outlook is changed.
While we can’t stop the aging process, it is possible to slow it down and potentially to reverse some effects of our past bad habits and lifestyles.


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Glucose and Aging Process

Simple Wellness and Longevity Concepts

Our body is made of millions upon millions of little cells. Each of these cells requires energy to function. Our brains have only one food source for energy and that is glucose or sugar. Here lies the problem, our brain requires sugar but too much sugar causes severe abnormal functions and reactions.

Simply, when you eat a carbohydrate it is converted into glucose. Excess glucose in your bloodstream can be converted by your liver into a substance called glycogen, a storage form of sugar. This glycogen can be stored in your liver or in your muscles, but just like your car, the amount that can be stored is limited to the gas tank has a limit. Imagine that you had a deal with the gas station to buy 10 gallons of gas every day. You had to buy the gas, but you drove the car and only burned 5 gallons per day. Each day the attendant would top off your tank with 5 gallons and then give you a 5-gallon container to strap on your car and you would have to drive around with this extra 5-gallon can on your roof. The problem is that the next day you would add another 5 gallons can or you would have to increase your driving to burn off more gas each day – or make a new deal with the attendant to give you less. The excess glycogen is stored in your body as fat.

There is one other factor that differentiates us from the car analogy. Insulin is the factor that causes the glucose to be able to enter the cell and be burned off. This decrease in the ability of insulin to be able to direct glucose into the cell begins in our mid-thirties. As a result, we start to see increases in the “love handles” about this age in almost everyone. This condition is called insulin resistance and as a result, the pancreas is told by our brains to produce more insulin to control the movement of the glucose.

Unfortunately, this excess insulin has the effect of being pro-aging. The conditions that have been associated with this include obesity, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, glaucoma, high blood pressure, increased blood fat levels, and many more similar degenerative conditions.

We are seeing an epidemic of diabetes. It is increasing rapidly in our culture. Where type II diabetes was called adult-onset, you now have teenagers coming down with it. This is because we have made a dramatic shift in the types of carbohydrates that we eat. There are basically two types of carbohydrates. One way of describing them is high and low glycemic. This is basically based on how fast they are assimilated into our bodies. Low or slow glycemic foods usually have a lot of fiber like beans and most fruits. High glycemic foods are digested quickly and enter the bloodstream in a rush. These are foods like white bread. Another way of easily defining these foods is processed and non-processed. Basically, eat anything that is natural and man or woman has not played around with it. If you follow that simple rule your diet will have almost all low glycemic foods and cause less stress to your pancreas. Historically, it wasn’t until the 16th century that refined sugars started to be added to the human diet, and it was in the 20th century that white pasta and bread became a staple.

Fat increases the rate of aging. Being overweight causes our joints to break down ahead of time. Obesity leads to an increase in free radicals – those devils that start almost all of the degenerative diseases. If you have too much fat on your body, you have too much fat in your vascular system. This causes changes in lung and heart function and inevitably heart disease, heart attacks or strokes.

One of the real problems is that many want to lose weight and can’t. They eat less and when they start to starve the body to lose weight, the brain responds by slowing downs the metabolism and increase production of fat content to preserve body heat and storage of glucose and get even fatter. Remember, we evolved over centuries when food wasn’t always plentiful. When faced with food shortages, our bodies had to slow our metabolism to make it through the winters when food was scarce. When food was plentiful, we had to pack it on to be able to make it through the tough times. The real problem is that our bodies have not adapted to having food available all year round. Consequently, hash restrictive diets do not work for long. What is really needed are moderate diet changes coupled with an increase in activity to stimulate the body to keep up the metabolic rate and not think that you are starving and preparing for a long winter.

Finally, 1/4 of us have a condition known as Syndrome X. This condition is also known as insulin resistance and people with it usually have an apple shaped body. In males, you will see the abdomen falling over their belt. This is a severe problem and needs a special diet to reduce the needs of insulin and at the same time give the patient a constant energy level. Nutritional supplementation is very critical to help this condition.

Controlling weight and insulin needs will help to slow the aging process. The tools that are used in this fall into two categories. The first most important thing is the proper functioning nervous system so the hormones such as insulin will be highly regulated and controlled. The second is a good basic exercise program that is tailored to each person’s needs. This program will depend on your current state of health, cardiac reserve, and lung capacity. The third involves a dietary plan to give you the foods that will not stimulate insulin while supplementing the diet with nutrients that will assist the liver, pancreas and endocrine system to stabilize insulin and glucose needs.

This is a balancing act but working together, you can have success with more energy and at the same time slow down the aging process.


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Strengthen Your Immune System

Chiropractic… Bringing out the best in you.

Your Immune System Works Around The Clock To Keep You 100%, Unadulterated You!

It patrols your every nook and cranny—attacking and destroying useless and dangerous things inside you: bacteria, viruses, splinters, dirt dead cells, even cancer cells.

It seems reasonable to suppose that the body is fighting cancer all the time and winning early cancers are probably being detected and combated in the body on a regular basis. If you take this process and step it up in intensity, you have the ‘miracle’ of spontaneous remission.1

Do You Have Defenses?

You have many weapons to protect you: your skin and mucous membranes create a physical barrier to invasion; your digestive juices dissolve germs; urine cleans your urinary tract, and skin secretions kill many germs when you’re alive—that’s why cadavers turn ugly colors. Fever ‘burn off’ microorganisms; swelling helps wash the system; special cells attack and devour intruders; macrophages, T-cells, killer cells, lymphocytes, antibodies and others, each with its own specialized manner of taking care of bad guys. You also have an internal defense industry that produces your armaments; your bone marrow, spleen, thymus tonsils, adenoids, appendix and lymph nodes give you lots of high-quality weapon systems.

What Are Immune Diseases?

But what’s powerful for good can be potent for bad. An unhealthy immune system can overreact as in allergic or hypersensitivity reactions; can underreact as in immune deficiency disorders; or can attack the very body it was meant to serve as in autoimmune disorders.

Do Emotions Affect Your Health?

A depressed person has a depressed immune system, a happy person a healthier one. Bernie S. Siegel, M.D. has noted that unexpressed feelings depress immune response. In fact, in 1982, two Harvard psychologists, David McClelland and Carol Kirshnit, found that simply watching movies about love increases the level of immunoglobulin-A, a defense against colds and other viral diseases. Another approach is—get a pet!

 To boost your immune system, get a pet. Whatever the animal—dog, cat, fish or bird—turning your attention outward will help.  Just watching a tank of tropical fish or stroking a cat is therapeutic.4

Can Chiropractic Help Your Immune System?

Doctors of chiropractic analyze your spine to locate vertebral subluxations, a serious condition that causes spinal distortions and interferes with your nervous system function. Over a hundred years of chiropractic and osteopathic observations have demonstrated to many patients that spinal care improves immune function. The exact mechanism of how the spine and the nervous system affect the immune system is one of the hottest areas of scientific inquiry. This new field is called psychoneuroimmunology (PNI). Keeping your spine healthy under chiropractic care is one of the best ways of keeping your immune system functioning at its optimum level so you may remain healthy and whole.

Spinal health is important for proper internal organ function.

Conclusion

No matter what disease or condition you have, you can benefit from a healthy spine. Spinal health can be as important for your overall healing as proper nutrition. Are you and your family carrying the vertebral subluxation complex in your spines? Only a chiropractic spinal checkup can tell.

Among the many things contributing to your health: the quality of the air, food, and water you take in; how you handle emotional stress; your inherited weaknesses and strengths; your use of drugs; exercise; and relaxation—a healthy spine is absolutely essential. In some people, it is a major factor and can make the difference between a life of health, strength, and vitality or a life of disease, weakness, and disability.