There is an ancient Hebrew blessing, “May you live till 120”. I have to admit, as I reached another ‘mile-stone’ birthday this year, the significance of these simple words crystallized a bit more for me . Yes, I want longevity for my family, my patients and myself because there’s soooo much more we all want to see and accomplish in the coming years; but I don’t want just quantity, I demand quality too. As 50 becomes the new 40 (heck why not the new 30!) and so on, I’m being asked by my patients what chiropractic’s role is in keeping us feeling and behaving young right into old age.
To understand why 120 might seem so unrealistic we need to understand what might be keeping us from it. From a purely ‘engineering’ standpoint, science says we might very well be built to run for 100+ years. But we don’t treat ourselves to ideal conditions, and thus struggle to get there. Many of us take our cars in for more regular maintenance than we do ourselves. Our mechanics check that all moving parts are in proper alignment to prevent wear-and-tear and premature aging – when was the last time you had an expert on bio-mechanics do the same for your body? We give our machines proper fuel that’s customized precisely to the ratio of ingredients required for optimal performance and yet give our bodies food chosen for convenience, cost or comfort rather than for nutritional value (and often we skip putting fuel into ourselves at all because we’re too busy to stop for a proper meal). We’ve all experienced what happens to a motor when it’s left too long without movement – parts seize. Moving parts need lubrication, be they animate or inanimate. We have built-in ‘motor oil’ between all of our moving parts called synovial fluid, but it only gets spread around when our joints are in motion.
A good mechanic – as in this instance I’m claiming a Chiropractor is – looks at the cause of breakdown as well as the result. Chiropractic looks at three causative stresses – trauma, toxins and thought. Trauma can occur on macro or micro levels. We all acknowledge the damage of collisions and sports injuries, etc. but many of my patients forget about repetitive stress, sleeping postures or bad ergonomics. To return to a car analogy, think of what happens when you bump a curb or drive through a pot-hole. No immediate damage might be perceived, but the alignment shifts just a little bit. And driving many miles on that bad alignment causes premature wear to all the moving parts that are slightly askew. Months down the road you notice a squeal that shouldn’t be there – parallel to the ache that ‘appears’ out of nowhere and gets worse, which my patients often seek my help to relieve. Toxins were already discussed – the less than adequate food we put in our bodies, the less than clean air that we breathe, and the other-than-water we drink. The contribution of thoughts to better or worse health is an emerging field of understanding that I look forward to diving into with readers of this newsletter at a later date. Suffice it to say that our thoughts are a bath that we are immersed in 24/7 and may very well be the largest contributor to our feelings of wellbeing (or not) on a moment to moment basis.
Drs. Hoffman and Porter, in their recently published book, Your Flourishing Brain, relate all of these forms of stress back to the toll they take on our health and on premature aging, and discuss how chiropractic can play an integral role in mitigating the effect. They say, “All forms of stress cause brain stress. When the brain is stressed, it goes out of balance, and unfortunately, the body always follows and goes out of balance as well. This shows up as illness, disease, behavioral problems, loss of vitality, and rapid aging. The chiropractic adjustment rebalances the brain and when the brain is balanced again, fortunately the body will follow and heal.”
Dr. Alisa Blumberg is proud to be bringing her passion for holistic, natural, self-directed healing to the north-Toronto area through her work at Pinewood Natural Health Centre.
As a Chiropractor and Master level B.E.S.T. Practitioner, Dr. Blumberg’s mission is to educate and empower patients of every age, symptomatology and health goal on their unique journey towards optimal health and absolute wellness.
You can book an appointment with Dr. Alisa Blumberg by calling (416 ) 658-8100.