I think I speak for most people when I say that we prefer all-natural, holistic treatment options instead of synthetically formulated medications.
If that holds, however, then how come we don’t put in the time and effort necessary to treat common health conditions naturally?
Over my years of educating about natural healing methods (specifically for hemorrhoids and digestion), I’ve noticed two common obstacles in patients looking to implement holistic treatments into their daily life. Firstly, patients tend to find it difficult to change the habits and routines that they’ve lived with for decades. And secondly, patients become increasingly skeptical about how exactly a spiritual path can lead to physical well-being. This article will focus on the latter of the two obstacles.
But who am I to fault any of the doubters out there?
To be honest, I, myself was a doubter until just a few years ago. From the outside looking in, I simply wasn’t convinced enough to work past my laziness. It wasn’t until I finally educated myself and implemented these spiritual practices for myself that I truly discovered their potential in preventing physical ailments.
For this article, I will focus specifically on how meditation, an act most people link to spirituality, can help even the least spiritual person overcome a common condition like hemorrhoids.
The Body’s Link To The Mind
Mindful meditation is paramount to improving digestive functions.
Apart from meditation’s more well-known capacity in silencing the mind, Dr. Herbert Benson of Harvard Medical School reported it also plays a key role in drastically bettering our blood-oxygen levels and circulation efficiency. It does so by targeting specific parts of our brains that can alter certain physiological functions, like digestion. It allows us to reach a state of deeper relaxation and serenity, helping our hearts pump more steadily.
In the case of hemorrhoids, disrupted blood flow can lead to blood clotting in external hemorrhoids, or prolapsing of internal hemorrhoids. Meditation allows us not only to provide short term relief to our hemorrhoids, but also offers us a long term solution for combating piles.
Meditation, Stress and Hemorrhoids
Contrary to popular opinion, stress has a profound direct impact on gastrointestinal diseases, including hemorrhoids. According to Chris Kresser, a global leader in the field of natural health, our guts respond to times of stress with inflammation, a heightened perception of pain and increased hypersensitivity.
These changes in response and sensitivity stem from the fact that during times of stress, our system is no longer focused on the functioning of autonomic bodily activities such as digestion. As a result, our autonomic functions suddenly become secondary to our attention to stress and anxiety.
According to MayoClinic.com, we can seek to calm the mind and body through meditation, so as to eliminate our perception of stress. Enabling this deeper level of relaxation through breathing and heightened consciousness will improve a wide array of systemic functions, including digestion.
The Mind Can Cause Poor Dietary Choices
Have you ever wondered why it is that we tend to overeat during times of depression, stress or anxiety?
The truth is that stress and anxiety are often symptoms of greater emotional imbalances. As a response in trying to quiet these symptoms, foods—especially high fat, high sugar foods—tend to be our drug of choice. We use these foods to push down our worries and numb our imbalances, leading to unwanted weight-gain and digestive complications.
For times like these, it’s great to know that meditation can play a key role in changing the mindset that leads us to make poor dietary choices, and manifests itself through disease. After various sessions of meditation, one will notice a greater sense of calm and mindfulness, ready to quell any desire for unnecessary, unhealthy foods.
So next time you find yourself ill and struggling to commit to a more strenuous natural treatment option, remember all the benefits one reaps by following such a holistic approach. You won’t be disappointed!
Author: Nate Salway
Editor: Catherine Monkman
Photo: lillie kate/Flickr