Lupus creeper

Imagine you cook spaghetti – this action represents your organic function, digestion, energy source and waste production. You fill your sink with cold water; this now represents your current bodily fluid household. When the spaghetti is fully cooked you use a colander with too large holes through where the cooked pasta can escape – falls into the sink and mixes with cold water. This represents the wastage instead of being separated, mixing with your liquid matter. This “pasta”, loaded with bacteria, parasites and fungus causes all sorts of damage in your body. Atop your natural defense mechanism is confused and attacks your healthy tissue instead of clearing the waste.

Bare with me, the above analysis will make sense later. The problem here is simple, you could have used a thin mashed strainer. The strainer in the above story symbolizes your immune system and your connectivity tissue. If the skin of your digestive tracks is porous, toxic matter will escape and cause havoc in your body. With lupus, not only the skin of your digestive lining is compromised, your muscles are not sufficiently connected with your ligaments, weak ligaments detach from calcium deprived, brittle bones while infected and fat particle rich blood transports lesser oxygen causing your skin not to be nourished efficiently and finally your liver works over-time trying to detoxify, and finally your kidneys give up. If stress did not cause this dilemma it latest now will add anxiety – you will experience insomnia, rashes, hives and hair loss…

Either you are born with a large-holed strainer (inherited condition) or difficult-to-pinpoint-causes damaged your filtering tissues (external or internal reaction). The goal now is to separate the pasta from the water and restore your strainer – representing your porous tissue to efficiently separate and discharge toxic waste from your body – and restoring your damaged bones, skin and your self-confidents.

Lupus is an autoimmune disease where the body begins to attack itself, causing tissue damage anywhere in the body. Lupus can be a very serious condition because it attacks and destroys the body’s connectivity tissues, the skin, and eventually the vital organs. It affects the blood vessels. Reynaud’s disease is common with lupus. Lupus is considered a chronic inflammatory disorder of the connective tissue and appears in two forms: discoid lupus erythematosus (DLE), which affects only the skin, and systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), which generally affects other organs as well as the skin. It can be fatal and is characterized by remissions and flare-ups, often misdiagnosed as rheumatoid arthritis.

Modern research indicate that a person’s genes may increase the chance that he or she will develop lupus, it takes some kind of environmental trigger to set off the illness. Ultra violet rays (sun beds), sulfa drugs, tetracycline drugs, penicillin and antibiotic drugs, viral infections and maybe stress it self… Although there is a common scientific list of such triggers, I am personally convinced it could be simply your toxic private environment; from toxic household cleaners, sentence air fresheners, body products to your food choices. I will elaborate on the latest below.

There are three “professional” theories as to the cause of SLE. First, SLE is an abnormal reaction of the body to its own tissues and caused by a breakdown in the autoimmune system. Second, certain factors may make a person more susceptible to SLE such as stress, streptococcal or viral infections, parasites, and exposure to sunlight, immunization, pregnancy or genetic predisposition. Third, SLE may be aggravated by certain drugs, such as anticonvulsants, penicillin, sulfa drugs, and oral contraceptives. There are more than one hundred different drugs that may cause lupus.

I’d say, there are more than 6000 food products that may cause lupus. There are more than 2000 household products that may cause lupus. You live in a toxic world.

I have personally helped a dozen of people cope with this dilemma and all of them experienced a positive result. Let me be very clear: I DO NOT claim to have a solution, nor do I have the expertise to comprehend lupus, but by merely adjusting a few basic TCM principles all of my friends affected with this illness have improved their condition and some even managed to stabilize their wellbeing to a comfortable level. The long-term goal is to eliminate or minimalize the use of cortisone that causes a whole slew of horrid side effects. I strongly believe that the degenerative disease that are increasing in number are side effects from many immunizations people have been given over the past few decades. Immunizations have the effect of oppressing your immune system to know whether a substance in the body is its own or whether it comes from outside. Simplified, with SLE your body’s ability to remove accumulated waste is hindered and retarded by a constant buildup of parasites. This waste causing toxicity and your body can’t discharge it timely, causing internal infections, protein not being distributed sufficiently and your whole cycle of balance becomes disrupted. You react, you flip out, you fall apart – you die.

From the perspective of TCM I encourage you to prepare with a preventative approach, reduce your immediate toxic environment, eat natural rich antibiotic and immune boosting choices, add sleep and avoid stress.

Learn about the products you consume, doubt me: check it out. I want you to have a relation ship with the food you eat – knowing is powerful!

Meditate! If you experience lupus, consult your doctor and talk about a few of my suggestions: Clear your home from all toxic cleaning products. Even with a claim of “environmentally safe”. Get used to clean with vinegar-diluted water, maybe chlorine for extreme dirt and find comfort in using non-perfumed simple soaps and body products that have an expiration date of less than two years. When you vacuum clean, open all windows and avoid inhaling your fibrous carpet dust blowing out of the machine. Wash your cloth and sheets with hot water. Wear nothing that needs dry-cleaning or can’t be washed hot. Pack your fancy dresses away until your body has recovered and is strong enough to tolerate them.

Allow yourself a minimum of 7 hours sleep in summer and eight hours in winter. Do not watch much TV, computer screen and never do so within an hour of bedtime. Sleep with your cell phone in a healthy distance.

Do not microwave anything.

Do not drink fluoride-laced water from the faucet.

Now get one a simple but effective diet: Never drink carbonated drinks, healthy or not. Most people with heartburn will discover that is the best advice. No artificial sweetener. If you are diabetic listen: NO ARTIFICIAL SWEETENER! No dairy product, no meat and limit your intake on pre-made product to a few items like canned tomatoes or beans. Any packaged product with a shelf life over two month is most likely not healthy for you. No eggs and no nightshade plants. Limit your chicken meat and purchase free range, less loaded with penicillin and hormones. Limit wheat and stay away from commercial baked bread and pasta. Sorry, but limit your chocolate intake.

Start finding pleasure with honey. Sugar is better than any sweetener including Sustiva and agave syrup. Eat daily a few black walnuts, drink daily decaf hot teas with honey – preferably passionflower, mint and Taheebo tea. Drink fresh juices whenever you have a chance. Fresh means consumed within one hour of squeezed, pressed or centrifuged. Eat a diet that includes onions, garlic and lots of quick blanched greens. Do not eat raw spinach and raw broccoli; they are stressful on your system. Eat a variety of colors, chew longer, enjoy the simple flavors and allow yourself the pleasures of a bite of sweets when appropriate.

Add bee propolis to your supplement intake. You will discover it as a powerful additive in fighting the side effects of lupus! Propolis has the ability to energize the body and restore vigor and stamina. It boosts the thymus glands and aids with sleep and mental strength. It is one of nature’s most effective antibiotic!

Please, share with me if you found help in this blog. For a personalized consultation simply contact me in person.

TCM chef Raphael

Addicted to pain killers

Watching Sanjay Gupta’s CNN special on pain medicine abuse in the US. 80% of all prescription pain medication in the world are consumed by Americans. Clearly there is a problem and a deadly connection to overdose, pharma-political dominance and their blatant denial about the reality of the epidemic on hand. There is no long term study on taking, stacking or long-term consuming these opiates; the lack of such studies is enforced by greedy corporations although today’s results of addiction study and the staggering overdose-death rates indicate clearly that our way of prescribing pain killers is wrong.

Through helping people in recovery with food, I have become convinced that what we eat and drink in general strongly influences how these opiates react in our system. During the many years aiding friends and clients with healthy choices, there has been a stunning realization that most of the synthetic pain prescription did not effectively aided in a long-term consumption. Eating healthy choices at the correct time -combined with exercise and a positive adaptation to learn to cope with the pain – seems more successful as a long term solution.

Nature offers us great solutions to deal with pain. To understand what “bothers” us we need to go back to the origin of the discomfort. In TCM we treat pain not as an isolated area in the body, we embrace that the physical and psychological aspect of the entire being needs attention. Besides the addiction chance of Western medicine, we have a “remove the band-aid” – fear; Afraid that if we stop taking serious pain killers the original discomfort will still be there…  Psychologically we are trimmed to doubt that our bodies could actually bounce back into a harmonious balance of norm.

It’s so easy to just pop a pill without having to adjust our life style. We don’t think that chemicals in our breakfast cereal or the pesticide in the early morning apple could influence the opiate? The plastic particles consumed daily, the household chemicals and the toxic air in a busy city is hardly a concern when we quickly subdue a pain that might be nothing more than your body indicating bad positioning or forewarning us about disharmony. I watch a young generation in high-school slurping with great ease sleep depriving power-drinks, washing down a codeine and thebaine combination…

A true addict will crush what ever pain pill combo they get their hands on and either sniff it or even inject it for a quicker rush… there is a problem, the most commonly used binder of these medications (crospovidone) might shut down their lungs oxygen exchange: Crospovidone is an insoluble polymer of N-vinyl-2-pyrrolidone that is used as a disintegrant in pharmaceutical tablets. We all know by now that taking modern medicines most likely can cause a chain reaction of illness… But we trust the doctor prescribing us meds, encouraged by pharma reps, endorsed by commission and bonus – even if there is scientific study pending on drug interaction. Nobody studies what food contamination can cause, other than it’s well established that certain items are not ideal i.e. grapefruit interacting with heart medicine, etc. There will never be a study published for people misusing these pharmaceuticals; simply, they’re not intended for intravenous injections; tens of thousands of people consume it in such manner. This is great for business!

All we consume causes a reaction in our bodies. Clearly, mixing chemicals to the variation of our intake complicates the reactions. I believe that with healthy, natural choices alone we can cope with most of what causes us pain. Opiates should be considered with a conservative approach. Breathing exercise, controlled healthy food and liquid consumption and maybe even natural pain killers – even marihuana – should be a first choice. We do adapt to pain. We can perceive pain to be less as much as we fear it to be more… It is often a choice. Leave the serious drugs to people with serious handicaps.

Think before you Speak…

Nowadays many quickly bounce to a bias opinion, before knowing the facts… I discover “detectives” amongst friends, “specialists” about other’ people behavior and oddly some stick it out (past their quick voiced judgment…) even beyond a point of disapproved logic… Often such invitations to boycott others is based on a fluke of truth, a mere first emotion – bagatelle fractions of reality wrapped in harsh words. I like a good joke, a fun comparison; Good satyr and cynicisms sugar coat the already cruel reality amongst so many narrow minded opinions… we need to be less critical of the voices and expressions by others and more in tune with a fair view of the reality before us…

This reality is simple: Connect with nature, find inner balance, eat less synthetic products, show compassion.

Zen is just that. RELAX, feel the GROUND you stand on and measure your INTAKE.

Relax; control your breathing at least once a day. If the word meditation reminds you of religion, simply switch off your subconscious breathing reflex and control for a few minutes your air intake. Slow it down. Breath deep. Exhale your lungs completely, enjoy the rush…

Place yourself on earth; not fibrous carpet, dead wood or cemented floor. Earth. Bond, once a day, even when in a city, make an effort to touch base with “real” grounds.

Control your intake, the air, the water the food. The sound you listen to and what enters your body through your eyes. Close your eyes and if there is nervous twinkle, you are not relaxed. Listen to beautiful music, or the sounds of nature. Loud coordinated noise like most music does not aid you preferably. If silence frightens you; find a partner to share your “quiet” time with.

Watch what you eat – you are what you eat: seriously, if it is foremost synthetics then indeed you are partially synthetic…

From this perspective, form your opinion about events, actions and situations around you. You will discover that your ideologies are less angry, less bias and possibly less interested about the details that seem to dictate the lives of your friends.

All energies we set into motion are out there… I don’t know where, but I think we constantly walk through them, like spiderweb spun from trees.  With all the kinetic energies, cell phones, electricity and voiced opinions it feels sometimes like walking through “clattered” air.

Look into the eyes of others and find nice words to share. Keep your message short and focused.

Smile often.

One bite vs. A life as a chef

It is truly odd coming back to Los Angeles after spending time in pre-Olympic Europe and Singapore. Tossed around by rain in London, hail in Switzerland and the brutal humidity of South East Asia – I’m still wandering in a cloud of jet-lagged daze. Impossible to adjust to my craving for spicy curry… Good quality of life, healthy food, present (as in not texting…) social interaction and a well-adjusted sense for business is surely lacking in the US. Although I love living in California (not just because of the weather) I tend to compare and wish I could surround myself with only the best of other lands.

I rebound with familiar faces from the rwp (red white & pure) days in Singapore. Not much seems to have changed. As life moves forward we merely become more wise about the past and cautious about the future. There is a sense of belonging when dealing with EYS (Eu Yan Sang) mixed with a peculiar hesitant. I love the general intelligence, the kindness of Asia cultures. I do clash a little with my “pushy” American attitude, trying to add quick efficiency. Seemingly, my free spirited and enthusiastic ways of adapting to the possibilities does not align with a corporate structure of a slow disective approach. Here at home we are more speditive in developing ideas into reality, but lack the sincere and logic business structure.

The need on both ends to come together and bridge a complex TCM conundrum is still the same. I have developed into a gifted, versed chef with the unique ability to incorporate simple herbal formulas into tasty food. EYS has the ingredients, the testing facilities and production factories lined up and needs my talent to produce intelligent food items that can attract a worldwide multi-generational clientele. How do we come respectfully together?

My dilemma is still the same: It’s hard to promote oneself as a good chef; Until you have sat on my table, tasted my food, shared my compassion… my job’s best resume is a short lived three dimensional experience. What seems a quick “toss-together” of seemingly lucky gestures and choices is actually a professional methodic selection of actions to blend wisdom, – years of study and struggle – into a dish. When I form flavor, balance taste and target sensations it is methodic and well thought out. The critique is brutally quick. One bite, judged by a few seconds of lesser joy and my entire reputation is murky!

An irate chef would burst into a defensive mode of reactions, insulted by the simplicity of the judging entity that seemingly excluded years of study, ignoring the artistic layers that are incorporated in a dish judged… Judged by a lesser compassionate palate, unaware of the circumstances that now counter against the master: The soils composition, the mediocre bare ingredients, the lack of tools and time… The personal facts, the judge’s physical momentary circumstances…? One few seconds of tasting a nibble and a whole life is measured by this instant.

I have long learned not to give in to such negative notions. One must look at the entire experience: Secured by my research, supported by my wisdom and motivated by my drive to please the most common of palates, I embrace a challenge and provide solutions. The simplicity of merely cooking a meal to please and earn an income bores me. Today’s life dictates that we find healthy solutions and fuse together the best of minds to create intelligent food without synthetic toxins. My motivation is not the business aspect, although I respect that money is vital to sustain trade and production.

Back to the drawing tables – in my case the test kitchen… I gotta get this right! My sense is to work, to show my kind intentions and trust that others will protect my rights.

At this point I find myself newly motivated by possibilities. It feels incredible to be a part of a development that sincerely caters to bring great food to the mass. In a world where most “nutritional” food is a farce, I welcome the opportunity to design TCM food for EYS again. This requires my artist side to bow to the slow moving process of regulations and bureaucracy…

Where is there a decent curry house in Los Angeles?

TCM chef Raphael

Cleverly fusing Cultures

These last few days were unusually turbulent. However, the prospects of my future is exciting.

This next blog deserves a thank you to Caroline Quest for a brilliant flicker of professional direction.

Whenever I travel to the Eastern world and stay at a “world-class” hotel I am confronted with a cultural curiosity about food. Most Chinese hotels seem timid when catering home-cooked food to a Western clientele without forfeiting a little of their culture. The menu selection foremost reflects the “request” of their guests who seemingly are opposed to classical traditional Chinese food.

Hey, I have visited places that had organized universities 3000 years ago but humbly ordered “Continental Breakfast…” Uncertain we find ourselves drawn to the simple bread/butter and müsli section while the “other side” clearly offers a more sophisticated variety.

Most Western travelers settle for customary home-cuisine and tend to be less open minded about unfamiliar flavors, smells or preparations of cultural cuisine. Such limitations dictate Asian hotels to cater a food selection that does not highlight their heritage. Although guests would like to experience (i.e.) Chinese cuisine, they might be trapped by several factors that influences partial (familiar) selection – not to risk their health, not encouraged to cope with new essence or too time constricted to step out of ones customized frame. It’s just business as usual…

My concept masterfully creates a cultural bridge: A clever fusion of traditional Chinese medicine with traditional French cuisine. An experience these clients bring back home with insight that the food they consumed and the history behind these menus will aid their wellbeing, longevity and it all tasted delicious!

Many hotel corporations disappoint having to design a skillful menu that highlights local tradition and fail to cater to the curious taste buds of their sophisticated Western clients. Chefs and Managers must learn to unite local flavors with European culinary highlights. My forte is developing menu ideas that blend local delicacy and plate them smartly in an all accepted, familiar presentation.

This concept of utilizing a 3000 year of Chinese wisdom with French cookery is my unique signature: I focus on local ingredients to highlight the flavors that will bind diverse cultures together through dining. I mix a well-rehearsed ancient knowledge with a modern appreciation for food; a perfect mélange to bridge the East with the West.  The selections look European but they are true fusion Cuisine.

For many luxury hotels catering to a complex traveler, my TCM fused concept adds a beautiful expansion to their menu curriculum. Guests recognize instantly that they are enticed to comfortably step into a cultural experience. A Chicken Cordon Bleu with Goji berry sauce looks familiar and invites for a discussion about immune boosting properties and its eye nourishing qualities. Guests become fascinated with a rich Chinese history. When the concierge explains that the ginger and lemon grass infused hot tea awakes energies and helps travelers balance their jetlag – he proudly shares a common sense of culturally known fact.

A chicken soup laced with TCM becomes a welcomed dish when fighting an outbreak of flue, saving a hurried business traveler. And this Chinese soup is a local feast. The strange, brown tea brewed from Luo Huan Guo – a perennial fruit of a vine – helps balancing body temperature during the humidity of a South East Asian summer and is a safe, sweet beverage for diabetics. It needs a harmonized team to purvey the message correctly: That is my job!

My menu creations are not just recipes for master chefs to follow, I train the whole team to convey a very hotel-personal message across continents while designing specific culinary delights and tonics – I fuse traditions while encouraging each side to uphold their identity. We become a stronger and healthier world by respecting our heritage but adapting and embracing the best parts of each distinguished cultures and share the accumulative knowledge that is available to all of us.

TCM chef Raphael

WATER / WINTER

WINTER

In physiology through TCM (traditional Chinese medicine) the element water represents the kidney, urinary track, your bones, hearing and manifest deficiency or overabundance in either your dry or oily skin, lack of energy or sexual drive and weakening of bones. Psychologically water manifestations include fear, causing hardened skin, tears or any liquids to escaping your body. These descriptions originate from 3000 years of study and have been poeticized, fused with witchcraft and confusing theories of a simple understanding of ancient wisdom that nowadays is fairly scrutinized with scientific knowledge.

The accumulative information available today is methodically understood as correct: Today we can teach a younger generation about water viscosity, density, conductivity and it’s thermal properties and pretty much every child (should) knows that water consists of three atoms; one hydrogen and two oxygen which turns into gas (vapor) when heated and expands when frozen – this knowledge, not as scientifically refined as we present it today has been described in astonishing parallels in ancient times. As fluid as science admits to be today, new discoveries bring us deeper into fractions of details and allow us to find subliminal connections to all essence that is life. In my abstract simplification I like to think that with (or without) all the knowledge, a mere fact persists: All matter is connected.

Life is more than simply science. …Standing on the ocean front, your arms stretched out, inhaling the moistened air and hearing the breaking sounds of waves can evoke a sensation beyond physiological wisdom… Is this real?

We tend as humans to need poetry, even a brilliant scientist will escape into a subliminal stimuli reality, accepting that what positively arouses our brain can show effect in our physical existence. (I’m currently living with a scientist – debating this very unscientific quandary).

We enjoy “reality-distractions” like horoscopes, theater, music and novels, art, circus and religion – all to entertain and expand our creative archive – Creating a cognitive mixture of real and surreal that cannot be separated from our realities like biological facts, limited by our irreversibility of time, social politics juggling laws to live in society and the scientific compelling discoveries.  We are a unique limited being, self affirmed we all could be a genius, outliving expectations but unable to get along: It is not the science that creates our struggles on earth; it is the “reality-distractions” by which we segregate individuality because we tend to refuse to be alike.

I enjoy poetical comparisons of science with my perception of living amongst each other: A drop of water is harmless until united it can hurl its power in the form of hurricanes, tsunamis and tidal waves.

In TCM the power of winter is the power of emphasis: it emphasizes the essence of life. Water when frozen is hard, stagnant and encapsulates, preserves – until spring changes the climate and liberates all movement.

Water representing winter invites us to hibernate through meditation, containment, concentration, and the storing of our energy. This is the season for resting and maintaining of our reserves, gathering strength for the year ahead. If we don’t follow nature we will become ill, weak and tired. We must be less active in this season, conserving our sexual energy, going to bed early, and sleeping late. Like seedlings that cannot sprout until they have gathered sufficient strength, our ideas and physical wellbeing is jeopardized if our energy is dispersed or drained.

Winter is a time of stillness, quietude and recovery. We call it the most yin of the seasons: The days are shorter, work should be limited, time should be used to bond, cuddle, to be still and eat less. The energy of winter is latent and potent: in this state of resting deep within, energy is collected and held in constraint; Abundant reserves within give us courage and strength of will.

As the days become warmer and brighter with the approach of spring, nature opens her eyes from the slumber of winter and looks to the new growth cycle that lies ahead.

If we have followed nature’s way and rested through winter, we will emerge with restored energy, clear vision, and a sense of purpose.

TCM Chef Raphael

Can your DNA change?

A fascinating discussion yesterday inspires me to write this long over-due blog on the topic of “the possibility of blue print change”.

Being dedicated to the study of TCM (traditional Chinese medicine) and fusing old wisdom into modern applications based on current science confronts me often with either inherited stubborn perspectives or even a dismissive attitude towards a stunning reality of physical possible changes: Many ancient theories are now fingerprinted in laboratories and provide results that require modern understandings of physics to embrace a new layer of possibilities – the limitations of physical life as we understand it today could possibly be altered by influences that are not materialistic. Henceforth opening the perception that not all phenomena are a result of material (matter) interaction.

Sure, most of us would say “we know…” but as a physisist, biochemist, researcher or anyone dedicated to conclusively understand how matter interacts and changes, a simple “agreeing” is not a scientific acceptable result.

In the discussion yesterday I was confronted with an old perception of DNA being the manifested single reality of your unique inborn coding of “what you are”. Although in the last twenty years we have slowly adapted to the scientifically respected notion that indeed ones personal DNA can alter during a lifetime (disregard the fact that aging protein weakens and cell formations disrupt…) – there are unique studies that exposed significant changes in DNA coding of people that seemingly defies standard principle. External influences like radiation and the constant consumption of poison will change sequences and RNA mutational zipper outcome with original DNA can cause trouble in cell splitting. I am talking about the “impossible” changes that are now studied: When dead heart tissue has re-grown of patients without the influence of hematopoietic cell transplantation. (human altered cells from DNA foreign donor zipped with damaged RNA of receiver to correct or alter the disrupted mutation) The hard to comprehend DNA changes that occur after gemline DNA insists or resists the change of eye color, or to mark  expected inherited codings: We are aware that people self-altered parts of their sequences – mid life!

I edged on the discussion; a fascinating topic on the notion that DNA memory could trigger a methaphysical experience. I was explained that because we are by DNA partially designed by the ancestry hereditary protein formation this inherited “code of information” would bound us so strongly with our ancestry that my friend was convinced he had “déjà vu” like “feelings”  – committed of having experienced something that through the discussion warped into either soul, feelings or even “unexplained reality”…

I’m troubled when “God” or “soul” ends up in discussions, it really pulls the floor of reality from beneath… (or above?) and makes for very confusing debates. Indeed the topic quickly drained into: “you don’t see that, do you”  and the silly dismissive notion: “ what school did you go to…?”

It ended with “…you cant belief this, can you?” I loath conclusive questions that impose the answer.

I belief it! I actually was convinced as a child that everything was fluid, all formable, water, stone and minerals. Fire contains water, as does water contain fire and the “magic” was the interchangeability of  all matter even with the unexplained what we often call “feelings”.  Later in life I learned that the emotions did trigger physical reactions, causing the burning of energy and expressing itself in blushing, euphoria, skin hives or causing us to buckle or wheep!

Whilst this is known in TCM for thousands of years, it challenges modern science to “formulate” it at least into a mathematically acceptable algorithm, that in itself is just a tool to express the unexplained, but it seems to comfort the curious that there is a matter on which there is a code that expresses the phenomena.

In conclusion: Your DNA is not predetermined a sequence that would tell us your life by birth. (Besides we only understand about 2% of the whole chain…) Since you are in matter, what you eat, inhale, see and impressed by the living circumstances of your territory and the choices you make – you have a dominant connection to yourself and within you can manipulate and indeed implicated significant the outcome of your coding’s destiny.

For my next discussion, the mere fact I feel insulted is hard to express in physical matter, but I do understand in such moments why others feel an urge to translate their emotion into a notion. I went home! Either way I awoke this morning happily realizing none of this changes my DNA.

Placebo from the perspective of TCM

Placebo effect in TCM is very important. As most of us experienced; when we set our mind onto the “right” track, we can achieve and super-achieve. That “right” part however seems to be the critical focus point, human success often lies within the mind adjusting to the physical actions we engage in. We can self-stimulate, more or less, an initiative thought that even translate into a biological response; releasing endorphins or react in other bodily ways. Undoubtedly, our mind can activate many physical responses.

We say “concentrate” and “focus” to express when pointing out the intention to align the mental capacity with a mental exercise – which we assume to be foremost the brain – is it a physical or psychological request? It is a little bit like asking the brain to concentrate, to make the brain relax while introducing a mental exercise. Your brain has to do two things to convince you it does nothing…

In TCM the word placebo is not likely discussed. It is foremost used in modernity when Western medicine is compared with traditional methods to show that either approach is better or to suggest that somehow neither works when the patient is mentally unwilling to corporate. I find such research especially odd in the face that TCM is foremost a preventative approach and claims no success in healing, curing or “fixing” a problem. TCM can support your wellbeing, balance disharmony and its foremost purpose is to keep you healthy and possibly prepared for disharmonies; i.e. accidents, aging, consequential dilemmas and mental strength. But TCM is no placebo. This wisdom is tested on millions of people with no toxic side effects.

Unlike western medicine – constantly trying to isolate the one dominant factor, element or culprit of any illness or discomfort. Even isolating singular essence of natural products as if “extraordinary” could make sense by itself. TCM tends to treat any disharmony from what each of us perceives to be “normal” by the origin of ones inequality. A very wise practitioner would point out that there is no visual problem but an unnecessary mental imbalance might cause a physical disorder and henceforth he treats the foremost the “mind”, the physical brain, the spleen – e.c.t. Within we have a quick claim to “non-scientific” manifestations…

TCM practitioners in their earliest documentations were aware of the synesthesia effects of foods, and herbs. They treated “unhappy people, living in the dark” by sending them outside. Think of your mom walking into your room, opening the curtains and encouraging you to get up:” Sweetie, a beautiful day awaits you!”

Also placebo might be in today’s world a “trickery” and misleading method of treating someone in need for physical or physiological attention, in TCM the use of positive encouragement and the combining of yoga, massage, acupuncture and the encouragement to cook yourself a brew of healthy herbs is a well understood combinational method of assistance. TCM treats each individual with different suggestions, unlike Western medicine that often describes the same pill for all.

In the last few hundreds of years, we as human societies have become very involved with our own visual image. As a result, physiological illnesses have risen. Without a mirror in every room, people in past times had lesser self-opinionated issues and in average cared lesser about miniscule details of their appearance. With modernity and fashion trends, encouraged through instant media influences, new levels of stress and urges to be “beautiful” have catapulted physiological and pathological illness in today’s world. We flock to be pretty and stay “young”.

TCM has no remedy to cure insanity nor can it help with vanity. Simply start with being less impressed about details. Embrace that all life is limited. Love yourself. You could call this advice placebo – but it does work!

Finally Teaching TCM

An incredible journey of my life has started: I am very excited to announce that I have now committed to teach Seminars for anyone interested in learning about the basics of Traditional Chinese Medicine.
Unlike in Asia or Europe where there is a much stronger connection to herbollogy and past-present understanding of the powers of everything we ingest, here in the USA I had to develop first a manual, which carefully erases the myth and mystery of eating healthy.

This three day course is intended to give any participant, chef, nutritionist, health workers and foremost people in need of changing their life style, a significant base from where to comprehend the multitude of all nature has to offer us in supporting a healthy, immune boosting and life generating transformation.

A life with TCM can restore confidence, overall health, fight pollutant and toxins and support mind, body and endurance. This three day course will change your perception but does not require you to change your life style.

Check out the Student pages for more information.

TCM chef Raphael Gamon

teaching TCM

From a state of limbo I finally stretch myself out to write my next blog. 2011 ended in turmoil for me; confusing moments and insecurity about work, life and the progress of aging all mixed together with the realization that the cruelest lies are told in secret.

It is within the irony of life that my grasp of reality, dear friends and my joy for living would be my secure passing through this experience and finding within the energy to finish a group of projects I have postponed for too long.

The TCMchef website is in construction and I am challenged with finding translational solutions for the message and menu suggestions that can be adapted and copied for anyone interested in learning about preventable and curative approaches.

Within all the remedies I suggest to friends and strangers; I myself found great comfort in adjusting my own intake: It did assist me in curving around the above experience, good food, plenty of healthy teas, kind music, interesting books and no CNN for a few weeks. I feel peachy again and strong enough to guide others around me again.

I finished the book about my life. An old project that understandably progressed… On the doorsteps of fifty I find this a fitting “first chapter” and might even find the courage to send it off to print.

On my horizon for the near future shimmer outlines of teaching my TCM cookbook: That next unfinished chore on my desk. The idea of teaching this to others fills my chest with pride and joy. To be able to activate in others an understanding for caring not just for the very body that holds us in balance, but for nature and enable young people to plant a seed of wisdom in their minds, is incredibly awarding. There could be travel involved; a nomadic life once more…

First off I have to reduce the ballast that holds me tide to shore. Write down the many recipes before they fade from my mind and allow myself to bring this work to the printers as well; farewell knowing I might regret not having added “this” or “that”.

2012 will bring joy and comfort.

TCM chef Raphael

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