The One-Minute (or so) Healer by DANA ULLMAN MPH
“This is a delightful and sensible book about medical self-care. I reccomend it as a good addition to your home health library.”–Andrew Weil, M.D., author, founder of the Program in Integrative Medicine, University of Arizona
“Once again, Dana Ullman has been able to bring the means of achieving health to the individual. This book is fun, informative, balancing and wonderful.”–Lindsay Wagner actress and author of “The High Road to Health”
“A fine, funny and useful book”–Dr. Dean Ornish, M.D., author, founder of the Preventive Medicine Research Institute, author of “Dr. Dean Ornish’s Program for Reversing Heart Disease”
Excerpt from the book:
Becoming a healer in one minute is really no big deal. You’ve actually been working at healing longer than you think. Thousands of years of survival training have been built into your genes. From the moment of conception up to this very instant, every cell of your body has actively and continually defended itself against microbes, environmental assaults, and all types of stress. Perhaps most wonderful of all, your body has defended itself against you and the ravages you have inflicted on it.
Occasionally, of course, you need some help in healing. At times you learn a technique or two to heal yourself, and at other times, you may go to a health expert.This book will help you with the first choice. It will increase your knowledge of what you can do to help the expert healer inside you to do its work. The premise of this book is: if you take your disease lying down, you are apt to stay that way.
Before Using One Minute Strategies, Consider This
Many readers probably rushed to the chapters dealing with specific one minute strategies before reading this introduction. What’s the hurry? As Lily Tomlin once said, “For fast relief, slow down.” Although it’s natural to want make it stop hurting as quickly as we can, it is important, sometimes even necessary, to understand healing in order to make it happen most effectively. This is not meant to make you feel guilty if jumped to chapters that describe the one minute strategies; it is simply to say that it is sometimes useful to read a book’s introduction in order to get some insights on how to use a book most effectively.
Franz Kafka once wrote, “To write prescriptions is easy, but to come to an understanding with people is hard.” Likewise, to take a vitamin, herb, or homeopathic medicine is easy, but to come to a real understanding of what is wrong with you and what you can do on a deeper level to make it right is more difficult. Before rushing off to do one or more of the one minute strategies, I want to encourage you to consider reading The Steps to Healing, a companion book to this one which helps you understand the various steps to healing. This isn’t meant to be a crass promotion for one of my other books, it is my encouragement to you to consider learning about the healing process and how to best augment it.
The book you have in your hands right now is full of specific techniques for initiating healing, while my other book, The Steps to Healing, will describe the various steps or groundrules for healing to happen.Now that I’ve said that, let’s talk about this book.
Between 10 and 30 different strategies are offered for each condition You are not expected or even encouraged to use all of them to heal your ailment (see Step #20 in The Steps to Healing: Obsession With Health Can Be Sickening.). Try using a few of them one day and a few more the next day until you feel better.
The one-minute strategies derive from both Eastern and Western cultures and from ancient and modern traditions. Some strategies are part of folk medicine, some are a part of the cutting edge of contemporary medicine, and some will become an integral part of 21st century medicine.
Using “Unconventional” Methods
Some of the strategies recommended in this book are presently considered by the medical establishment to be “unconventional” or “unproven.” And yet, many of them have been used for a considerably longer time than modern medical treatments; indeed, some have been used for thousands of years. The term “unconventional” is also dependent on where you are in the world. In many places the use of herbs has always been considered completely conventional. In the Far East, acupuncture and acupressure are totally accepted, while our conventional medicine, including Cesarean section births and artificial hearts are not.
What is considered unconventional therapy today may be mainstream tomorrow, and what is considered conventional medicine today may be tomorrow’s quackery. This isn’t a prediction; this is the evolution of medicine and science. Ultimately, the words medicine and science should be thought of as verbs, not nouns, for they are always changing, growing, transforming.Physicians too often overestimate the risks and underestimate the value of using unconventional therapies. At the same time, they tend to overestimate the value and underestimate the risks of conventional therapies. A healthy scientific attitude towards these presently unaccepted treatments is to maintain an open mind–but not such an open mind that one’s brain falls out.
On the other hand, it is important to seek conventional medical care when appropriate. If you have a potentially serious problem or recurring symptoms that are not remedied by the strategies recommended in this book, you should seek out professional medical care.
Ultimately, a collaborative approach that integrates natural and conventional treatment for healing is the best way to make it happen.Using This Book
This book provides specific strategies to help heal yourself. Just as doctors “practice” medicine, you have to “practice” healing yourself. It is often necessary to experiment with one healing strategy or another or a group of strategies. Such is the adventure of practicing healing and practicing life.
Although some people who have never tried or rarely used natural therapies may feel uncomfortable with them, it is reassuring to know that natural healing strategies are generally safer and have been used for a considerably longer period of time than conventional medical treatments.
Have fun with these various healing strategies. Learning to utilize herbs with all their unusual textures and pungent fragrances is an enjoyable and empowering experience; pretend that you’re a primitive medicine woman using herbal wisdom that has been passed on for generations in your tribe, or a shaman learning the secret language of body and soul. Discovering the safety and often rapid effectiveness of homeopathic medicines is very exciting, as is the detective work sometimes necessary to figure out the exact remedy to take for a particular set of symptoms. All of the strategies, from food choices to breathing exercises, will give you a sense of healthy control and connection to your body that is impossible to get from popping a laboratory-created pill.
This book is not intended to provide detailed information about every type of natural therapy. The books listed in the recommended reading list at the end of this book will help you learn further about the healing strategies which appeal to you.Most of the suggested remedies are available at health food stores and at select pharmacies. To help you find local sources of these products, you may want to contact health practitioners in your area who specialize in natural healing.
You are now ready to embark on the adventure of using these one-minute (or so) strategies for health and healing. Enjoy the process, and by the way, if you find that some of the strategies are taking longer than 60 seconds, (it just might happen!), just put your stopwatch away, relax, and realize that your inner doctor has more patience than you know.
A SAMPLE CHAPTER…
“Minds, like bodies, will often fall into a pimpled,ill-conditioned state from mere excess of comfort.”
Carol Burnett once said, “Adolescence is just one big walking pimple.” Although acne is an all too common problem for teenagers, adults experience it as well. Acne is one of those conditions that isn’t painful or even physically discomforting; however, it certainly is a blow to the ego. Acne can turn a pretty face into a battlefield where it looks like bombs have exploded, soldiers are bleeding, and no side is winning. It is easy to feel that acne is nature’s revenge against the beauty of adolescence.
The good news is that you’ll grow out of acne…usually.
For those adults who have acne, it can be even more embarrassing than to adolescents. The silver lining here is that people may think that you’re a teenager.
On a more serious side, it is important to realize that skin symptoms are not necessarily a skin disease. Skin symptoms are usually internal problems that are manifesting on the skin. The skin is considered the third kidney+it is another organ of elimination that the body deploys to externalize oils and other matter not excreted from the body in the urine or stool. Because acne is more of an internal problem is manifests through external symptoms, it is not enough simply to wash your face regularly. Treating skin problems is also an inside job.
Further, one should be careful applying the various conventional external acne medications for they can irritate the skin and suppress the external symptoms and create more serious internal ones.
It is also important to remember that having acne isn’t all bad. Texture may be “in” this year or next. If, however, you do not want this to be your fashion statement, try these strategies.
Clean up your act
Hygiene is important, and you can benefit from washing your face two or three times a day. However, more frequent washings can wash away important oils from the skin that help to lubricate it. If you use make-up, make certain to wash it off every night.
Too clean is too much
Avoid using soaps that dry out the skin too much or that causes any redness. Avoid using alcohol as an astringent because it tends to dry out your skin too much. Witch hazel solutions are more effective astringents.
An herbal wash
Take the tincture of myrrh, dilute it in a small bowl of water, and use a swab of cotton to wipe your face. Myrrh’s antiseptic and astringent properties can both treat and prevent acne.
Naturally antiseptic and drying
Tea tree oil is a powerful natural antiseptic and drying agent. Apply it directly to wherever the skin is oily or where there are pimples. However, some people can develop an allergic reaction to this herbal remedy, so you may want to do a small patch test first. It is recommended to use products with 15% tea tree oil.
Steam those pimples out
Give yourself a facial steam bath. Place chamomile flowers or sage leaves in a bowl of water that has just finished boiling, and place a towel around your head. Create a mini-steam bath for your face. For people who want a stronger herbal steam bath, use tea tree oil, though be careful about using too much of this powerful, natural antiseptic (an alternative to using this herb in a steam bath is to apply tea tree oil directly on the acne).
Oil’s well does not always end well
Avoid oil-based cosmetics because they tend to clog skin pores. Cosmetic-induced acne is a common problem for many women. Look for cosmetics labeled “non-comodegenic.”
Your hair is contagious
Keep hair off your face with a comb or brush. Wash your hair at least every second or third day.
To squeeze or not to squeeze
Most pimples should not be squeezed because a pimple is an inflammation, and you can cause infection by breaking it open. Worse still, squeezing them can sometimes scar you. However, if you are desperate and want at least some temporary improvement in your facial skin, use a hot, clean cloth or tissue to soften the pimple. This will allow you to break the pimple open with gentle pressure (the more pressure you have to use, the more likely you will damage facial skin).
Vitamin A (25,000 IU daily), vitamin B complex (100 mg., 3 times/day), vitamin E (200-400 IU daily), and zinc (30-60 mg. daily) are worthwhile supplements. Vitamin A can be used in an ointment, cream, or pill.
Essential fatty acids (flaxseed oil, evening primose oil, or borage oil are excellent sources) help keep skin soft and smooth and can dissolve fatty deposits that block skin pores. Take essential fatty acids daily.
Avoid drug abuse
Several prescription drugs, including many types of contraception pills and corticosteroids, can cause or aggravate acne.
Garbage inside, garbage outside
Acne can be affected by the food you eat. Although no foods have been proven to cause acne in all sufferers, some people observe reactions to milk products, nuts, fats, fried and oily foods, and chocolate.
Emotional garbage inside, emotional garbage outside
Emotions may be eating at you, literally. Emotional turmoil can disturb digestive and endocrine functions, leading to inefficient digestion of oils and to a potential increase in skin oils. The first step to deal with any emotional problem is to acknowledge it. Don’t deny these emotions, but don’t let them get the best of you either. Next, express what you are feeling; don’t suppress it.
Research has shown that people with acne have higher levels of anxiety and anger than other people do. However, this research didn’t discover if the anxiety and anger lead to the acne or if the acne lead to anxiety and anger. In any case, it is worthwhile to do something so that these emotions don’t take a more serious toll upon your health or upon your face. Relaxation exercises may help you be in greater control of your anxiety and irritability rather than visa versa. Consider meditation, progressive relaxation, breathing exercises, or yoga. But don’t try to do all these at the same time, since such efforts will lead to greater anxiety!
There is a real difference between cosmic beauty and cosmetic beauty
Everyone has his or her own inner beauty. Once you truly recognize this, you’ll beam it and become even more beautiful.