There is a wonderful story told by Dr. Lissa Rankin about Stamatis Moriatis; a man living in the US in is mid 60’s diagnosed with cancer and given 9 months to live. Instead of seeking aggressive medical treatment, he decided to return to his native Ikaria, a Greek island near the Aagean Sea. With the life he had left, he decided to live richly. He and his wife moved into a small house on a vineyard, he reconnected to his spiritual roots, planted a garden, basked in sunshine and reconnected with old friends daily over a bottle or two of wine.
Six months had passed and not only was he still alive, he was actually feeling better than ever. He found purpose in his daily life and enjoyed his evenings with community. Three and a half decades later, Moraitis is 97 years old, still living in Ikaria, never undergoing any cancer treatment. At one point, 25 years after his diagnosis, he decided to go back to the US to ask the doctors what had happened. The doctors were all dead!
I retell this story because I find an immensely important teaching for those of us living a fast-paced, stressed out, hectic Western life style. In a land where conventional medical care is actually making us sicker than our insane lifestyles, it is time we come home to the truth of how to heal, reclaim our wholeness and bask in a state of wellness. It is a process of unlearning societal programming and investing ourselves in the vital wisdom within that is thirsting to emerge.
Adrenal fatigue is plaguing a large percentage of Westerners today. Some are aware of it, some are not. What is most alarming is that we don’t seem to understand the depth of our endocrine system and the massively important role our adrenals play in our total wellness. If the adrenals are taxed, the whole body goes out of whack. Our hormones become unbalanced, our thyroid shuts down or goes berserk, inflammation sets in, and if left unattended, it all WILL lead to serious disease that can create a sickly life and even an early death. It’s time to stop the madness!
You and only you are the master of your Destiny. It is never too late to begin to make the changes that will lead you to the life you deserve; the life you were born to live. But I have good news – this does not have to be a difficult process. And I’m here to guide you. I shall share some lovely pleasurable tips here, and should you desire further mentoring, you know where to find me.
First and foremost, I’m going to once again harp on the single most powerful herb on the planet! You’ve heard me talk about it time and time again. It is affordable, and may very well be growing in your own backyard. Stinging Nettle! This powerful little ally knows exactly how to nourish your adrenals, kidneys, bones and the entire body. Stop popping umpteen vitamins and supplements each day and simply drink them via a tall glass of Nettle infusion. A glass of Nettle infusion has all the vitamins and minerals you need for the day, and they are in their natural, effective, complex forms; not synthetic and broken up like they are in pill or capsule form. Nettle infusion has calcium, magnesium, potassium, iron, chromium, selenium, trace minerals, chlorophyll, manganese, silica, boron, zinc and iodine. It is also a great source of vitamins A, C, E, K, B complex vitamins and beta carotene.
Stinging Nettle is the most powerful ally for adrenal fatigue, along with a whole-foods diet and a balanced rest/movement ratio. These three components alone will empower you revive your adrenals and process the stress that comes your way. The next step is to deeply evaluate your life style. If there is too much stress, where and how can you begin to eliminate it? The goal is not so much to deal with stress more effectively, but to eliminate the excess. You can’t sugar coat a pile of shit and expect it to taste like ice cream.
Some components of stress may not be eliminated, so you have to look at what you can realistically (not necessarily easily) reduce. If your job is more stress than joy, it is time to think outside the box and find other work. If there are people in your life that suck the life out of you, it is time to contemplate letting go of them. If it is a family member that can not be let go of, look at possibly less time spent with them and treating yourself to pleasure following exposure. If your home environment is toxic – mentally, physically, emotionally and/or spiritually – clean it up! If you need help with any of this, seek it. Remember, you ARE power.
Setting up certain rituals in your daily life that bring you pleasure and peace are a step in the right direction. Morning meditation and/or exercise are fabulous rituals. Mid-day deep breathing, singing, dancing or nature brakes are delightful ways of flinging off stress. Evening relaxation rituals are my favorites indeed. I love to go out into my garden with a glass (or two) of wine and enjoy the flowers, the breeze, the birds and my doggies. Even when I travel I make time to unwind, even if it means an hour less of sleep. Studies now show that enjoying an evening cocktail actually enhances wellness. A recent study showed that middle-aged women who averaged 3 – 15 alcoholic drinks per week (spread out over every day of the week vs. binge drinking) had up to 28% higher odds of being free from chronic illness, physical disability, mental health problems and cognitive decline. Experiments from this same study even showed moderate alcohol intake can reduce inflammation! Whoa!!! Here is a link to the article http://www.cnn.com/2011/09/06/health/women-drinking-daily-health
Now, I’m not advocating getting schnockered. I truly believe that it is the relaxation ritual of that evening cocktail that holds the key to the health benefits. It divides the day and sets the intent that whatever has happened is now in the past. The potential of the rest of the night is infinite and full of possibility. Additionally, if you are not a drinker, starting now just to get the benefits described here is probably not a good idea. Find another additive for your evening ritual…perhaps a glass of Nettle! But if you do enjoy a drink in the evening, this is great news and reason to let go of any guilt. Many cultures outside of the US with phenomenal longevity stats indulge in such pleasurable activities (with responsible moderation). Could Mr. Moriatis’s spontaneous healing be in part due to his evening wine drinking with friends?
The truth is however, drinking wine, Nettle or anything else in and of itself does not hold the secrets to wellness and longevity. It is taking control of your life and making it one that is nurturing and nourishing that lead to joy and health. That may mean you need to unapologetically step out of societal expectations, make some decisions and changes that are initially uncomfortable, but ultimately bring you happiness. At the end of life, I guarantee you will not look back and be pleased with how hard you worked. You will find peace with how well you lived, how hard you played, how lovingly you took care of your body and how unabashedly you loved.
I’d love to hear from you. Your questions, comments and life experiences are welcomed and encouraged.
In Rhythm & Harmony,