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Digestion is a complex task performed by the body. It begins in the mouth and finishes when the ingested food leaves the body through the rectum. For all we have learned over the years regarding digestion, there is still so much more we don’t know or are still learning. For example, it wasn’t until recently, the last 10 years or so, that modern medicine confirmed our gastrointestinal tract is our second brain. This discovery is drastically changing the way the body and its many functions are viewed, because everything we put in our mouths can potentially have life-altering effects on the mind, as well as the body. continue reading
Digestive disorders can be simple like flatulence or gas, or they can be much more serious, such as Crohn’s disease. But regardless of the severity of the disease, there is no doubt digestive disorders affect far more people than they should, especially in the United States. A recent survey reports nearly 74 percent of all Americans are living with digestive issues. Most people don’t report it to their doctors either, because they assume it is normal to have gas, bloating or abdominal pain. But these symptoms can be indicators of much more serious underlying problems. continue reading
What is it about all this “stuff” in our lives? Maybe we accumulate things because they hold precious memories, or they remind us of our parents, past romances or childhood. To part with these possessions seems out of the question. But there’s a saying that I’ve always liked, “You have to get rid of the old to make way for the new.” And if you’re feeling stagnant in your life, it may be time to let a few things go and welcome the new energy that’s just waiting to come into your life.
We actually have two “homes” that need to be cleaned regularly: our physical homes and our physical bodies. Just as we accumulate “stuff” around our homes, so do our bodies accumulate food residues and toxins. And, although our bodies are equipped with a wide variety of organs designed to rid harmful toxins, these organs are most efficient when we provide the right nutrients to do this arduous job.
To fully clean your body, it’s important to give our organs a break from rich and complicated foods by either cleansing or fasting for a short period of time. Cleansing means paring down your food to just simple fruits and vegetables, lots of water and select whole grains. Fasting means the limitation of most foods and replacing them with lots of water, fresh vegetable and fruit juices, teas and soups. By limiting the energy going toward digestion, more energy is available to the rest of your body and mind, helping you sharpen your concentration improve your immune function and enhance digestion.
While you’re cleaning out your body and home, don’t forget to clean your heart. Throw away negative thoughts and habits you’ve been harboring that no longer serve you. A clean, open heart will allow you to receive all the good that awaits you each and every day. If your heart and mind are cluttered, there is no room for life’s gifts and surprises to enter.
© 2012 Deborah Farley, L.Ac, CHHC, DOM
Deborah Farley is a licensed acupuncturist, naturopath and owner of the Acupuncture Clinic of Richmond, in Richmond, Virginia. She’s a leading authority on using nutrition and Chinese medicine for treating symptoms and root causes of illness. For additional resources to improve your health and wellness, visit www.debifarley.com or call 804.288.3927.