Knowing how to be healthy these days can sometimes seem like a daunting task. With so much health information available to us it can be difficult to know which sources to trust and what to do. With busy lives, people often find it tedious and overwhelming to weed through all of the health information available in the media and on the internet. And even if they could sort through all the information, they would soon realize that medical and health information is not the same as knowledge about health. When health problems do arise, you need to know where to turn and what to do. Teaching people how to make good choices in life and making them aware of the best options are important first steps.
In this way, the Conscious Health Institute (CHI) is a valuable resource for you. Backed by years of professional experience, our researchers study a variety of sources—from medical journals to news reports to leaders in their profession—in order to produce up-to-date, interdisciplinary health research reports that take into account Western biomedical perspectives, traditional practices and non-Western perspectives like Chinese Medicine and Ayurveda. We communicate knowledge in clear and understandable terms. Below you'll find links to our most recent research reports.
KEY RESEARCH IN YOGA
The Consumer Product Safety Commission reported 29,590 injuries between 2001-2014 (Orthop J Sports Med 2016 Nov.4)
A survey in Finland of 110 practitioners, found 62% had injuries (International Journal of Yoga Therapy, No.18, 2008
Activitas Nervosa Superior, Vol. 27, 1985 promotes relaxation by retarding mental activity and slowing down heart rate. But, paradoxically, it also excitesthe body through autonomic stimulation and it works in a way similar to sexual stimulation
Many cases of injuries are unreported and sometimes the causes are unrecognized by physicians. (International Journal of Yoga Therapy, 18, 2008; 19, 2009)
The stress hormone cortisol, dropped an average of 11% and testosterone increased 16% in men, and in women went up an amazing 55%! (Human Physiology, vol. 30, no. 4, 2004)
One of the greatest benefits of Yoga is its ability to improve mood and outlook, and even more over time. (Scientific Evaluation, 1937, K. Behanan)
Muscle relaxation (muscle tone vs. tonus), which yoga is good at facilitating, improves sleep (Dr. E. Jacobson Progressive Relaxation)
Yoga cannot achieve the same benefits as aerobic exercises. The only yoga routine that comes close to aerobic exercises is the Sun Salutation, (a series of linked flowing movements). It does increase cardiovascular and aerobic fitness. (Journal of Bodywork and Movement Therapies, Vol.15, July 2011)
Reiki is part of a larger tradition of “laying on of hands” found in many parts of the world. Reiki was founded by Mikao Usui, born Japan in 1865. He studied in China and Europe a range of subjects including medicine, psychology, religion, and divination. He was also a member of Rei Jyutu Ka, a metaphysical group focused on developing psychic abilities.
Pain In The Back
"Oh my back!” This can be a real pain, and many of us will experience it at some point in our life, especially those over 45. It’s easy to take our back for granted, until we’re hit by pain. Then we need a solution. There’s a lot of confusion about back pain and the best way to treat it. The pain can be located anywhere from the neck down to the sacrum, but lower back pain (LBP) is the most common. It can be acute and sharp, due to a trauma, or chronic and episodic, due to multiple causes. Some people go for years with chronic pain and usually manage it with medication, if anything. The tragedy is that many people don’t know it’s treatable. Thankfully there is a growing body of evidence that it is and best practices pointing the way forward.
Making a Healthy Brain
Besides the heart, the brain is the most important organ in the body. Many people don’t recognize that the brain needs to be routinely nurtured. Since nearly all of the body’s functions rely on this organ, it requires special care. Have you ever experienced “brain fog”, cloudy thinking, or forgetfulness? Now that people are living longer, conditions like dementia Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s are becoming more common and negatively affecting our quality of life. Alzheimer’s is one of the leading causes of death in some Western countries. When we get older, we understand how important our mind really is. We shouldn’t take it for granted! The latest scientific findings indicate that diet, physical exercise, mental exercise, socialization and stress reduction positively affect human brain health. Using scientific research and a natural medicine perspective, we can become better informed about mental health.
It’s that time of year again when we think about making New Years resolutions. We mean to improve our lives – either by stopping what we “don’t like”, such as overeating, or by doing what we think will benefit us, like exercise. Such good intentions don’t always turn out as we hope, however, why does this happen? How do we change? Let’s look at what evolutionary biology, medicine, and the human sciences have to say.
I have spoken and written a lot about the importance of creating health and about “lifestyle medicine” as a way of treating and preventing illness and other health problems. Lets explore how you can do that.
That is a broad question. I’d say the three most essential things are diet, stress reduction, and emotional well-being.
Common Questions on Health and Enivornment
I get a lot of questions about nutritional supplements like vitamins, amino acids, and minerals. The health supplements industry is growing rapidly because of marketing and higher demand—the two are inseparable. Clearly it is preferable to get your nutrition needs from food, but this isn’t always possible today due to environmental depletion. Fertilizers, still the norm in agriculture, further deplete already over-cultivated soil.
10 Medical Myths
A Myth develops when an idea or ethos is assumed to be “natural” or the way things are. It’s a way of naturalizing something that is not. Society and culture are built on our ability to create myths. It creates a consensus reality. Myths aren’t just about gods and goddesses. It’s not only the ancient Greeks and Romans, or tribal cultures in the Amazon that live by myths, all societies do. They are presuppositions we have which we take for granted as given.
Cancer. It can affect nearly every organ in the body, and it usually begins with only one cell. The body is made up of trillions of cells, which consistently grow, divide and die. Unlike healthy cells, cancer cells are abnormal cells that do not die—they divide out of control, and they can invade/grow into other tissues and organs. What is the underlying cause and how to we restore cell health? There are two basic ways to study the body and disease, systemically and ecologic and analytically, the basis of biomedicine. I utilize both.
Therapies and Practices for Creating a Healthy Back and Preventing Pain
Solutions to Back Pain outlines an integrated holistic approach for and preventative measures against lower back pain, a condition that affects more than a quarter of American adults. In addition to outlining causes of back pain, this report explains a variety of back pain treatment alternatives to surgery and pain killers, including yoga, acupuncture, structural therapy, and the Alexander Technique. A brief series of back strengthening and stretching exercises is also outlined.
of Health Care Systems and Citizen Health Status - Winter 2010
CHI researchers have aggregated international health care studies in order to compare the health status of U.S. citizens to citizens in other post-industrialized nations. Although the United States spends the most of all developed countries on health care, its citizens have lower scores on overall health and higher infant mortality. The report addresses the United States’ key health challenges, including heart disease, cancer, diabetes and identifies preventative health care, lifestyle choices and education as core solutions.
Pills and prescription drugs are increasingly being replaced by meditation as a path to better health. This report summarizes recent research about meditation’s positive effect on depression, anxiety, medical symptoms, sensory pain, brain composition and physical impairment.
Integrating The Brain gives a comprehensive overview of the newest developments in brain health research in Western biomedicine and connects the results of this research to traditional Asian Medicine and health practices, such as Traditional Chinese Medicine. The studies featured in this report show how diet, physical exercise, mental exercise, and stress management affect the human brain and demonstrate the benefits of a holistic approach to brain health for people of all ages.
Exercise for Life explores the numerous benefits of exercise to heart health, brain function, digestive processes, mood and more. The report considers traditional Asian medicine and Western biomedicine perspectives on exercise and health and has a broad definition of exercise, which includes Yoga, Tai Chi, rebounding and inversion.
The Health Benefits of a Vegetarian Diet
This report explores up-to-date research regarding diet and eye health. Studies continue to support the fact that well-balanced vegetarian and vegan diets support eye health in a variety of ways. Additionally, meat consumption may create a more acidic environment in the body, resulting in more cataracts and macular degeneration.