During this very simple and user friendly four-day cleanse
-that you can follow anytime while maintaining your regular schedule –
we will transform the body, mind and those pesky emotions!
Based on an exciting body of research, it is becoming harder and harder to dispute the fact that our minds and our emotions are responsible for the health or lack thereof of the body. That’s right, as I will show you in this comprehensive article, it is our crazy minds that take the body out! Emotions are big thoughts that tend to “take over,” and become perhaps the most problematic mind content to our health. Thus, before we can fully fix the body, we must address those pesky emotions!
Join me as I discuss the research that demonstrates exactly how the mind and its emotions will impact just about every function, organ and organ system in the body! Then I’ll share a project I’ve been working on for a long time – a cleanse tailored especially for the mind and the emotions.
Processing Emotional Stress
Let’s take a minute to understand how our bodies process emotional stress. While we often think of brain chemistry and neurotransmitters when it comes to stress, recent research and Ayurveda point to a different center for emotions. According to groundbreaking research in the book, The Second Brain, 95% of the body’s serotonin along with many other brain chemicals and neurotransmitters are manufactured and stored in the gut. Actually, only 5% of the body’s serotonin is found in the brain at any given time. It is now well supported that we process our mental and emotional stress through our digestive tracts. It makes sense on an experiential level, too – think of that old and reliable “gut feeling.”
Our Most Sensitive Feelers
We also know from the same research that there are over 100 million neurons embedded in the gut wall that feel just about everything. Our most sensitive feelers however, are our bugs – the trillions of good microbes that line the skin of the intestinal tract. Of all the cells in the human body, 90% of them are bugs, and the majority of them are in your gut. (2) Cutting edge research tells us that these bugs are responsible for just about every function, organ and organ system in the body – it is all about our bugs. (2) More fascinating research tells us that these bugs are extremely sensitive to emotional stress. For example:
- Researchers now theorize that when an individual is under stress, certain stress-related chemicals are produced in the gut. These stress chemicals alter the microbiome of the gut and disturb the production of mood supporting neurotransmitters. (3)
- One study performed at the University of Wisconsin found that pregnant mice that were repeatedly startled and stressed during their pregnancies had babies who had significantly less Lactobacilli and Bifidobacterium (good microbes) in their gut. (3)
- Another study observed how a fearful, shy-natured mouse became more aggressive and competitive when the fecal microbiota from a very aggressive competitive mouse was transplanted into its gut. (4)
- A 2011 study in brain function, behavior, and immunity observed mice that were forced to live with a social disrupter – a mouse that was very aggressive and disruptive. Living with such a mouse changed the bacteria of the guts of the healthy normal mice. Their good bacteria were decreased, the bad bacteria proliferated and the mice experienced numerous health and immunity-related conditions. (3)
To Sum Up!
Emotional stress takes out the good bugs in the gut and alters our ability to create healthy neurotransmitters and brain chemicals that in turn help us cope with stress. As a result, emotional stress impacts the gut, the good bugs, the mind and the body more aggressively than it should. (1-4)
Molecules of Emotion
As we become less able to gracefully cope with stress, we create protective patterns of emotional behavior. These patterns started all the way back when we were learning to cope with stress as children. Soon these protective patterns became prerecorded emotional stress responses, deep grooves that we follow over and over, so that when we are presented with an old threat or emotional stress, we have a tried and true protective emotional stress response already queued up.
These repetitive emotions are stored in our bodies as “molecules of emotion,” carried by small proteins called peptides. Receptors for these emotion-carrying peptides are concentrated in the vast information networks of the gut, brain, skin, spine, and respiratory tract. (5) The peptides attach to receptors in these areas, effectively blocking the flow of these key body systems. In this way, old, pent-up toxic emotions are a real threat to our optimal physiological health. (5)
Meanwhile, Ayurvedic texts have said for thousands of years that old toxic emotions (called mental ama) can store in the body (muscles and fat) and block the flow of the body’s subtle energy pathways and literally cause disease. Sounds like these Ayurvedic guys may have been on to something!
The whole purpose of Ayurveda is to help the body function from a place of balance so to allow the mind to function with more awareness. Once the mind is more aware of itself and its old patterns of behavior, the opportunity for transformational change and deep healing arises. Once the old destructive patterns are broken, the incessant emotional stress that pounds away at the gut and good bugs is relieved. Once the gut is no longer distressed, its ability to digest, detox, provide 80% of the body’s immunity and proliferate a diverse microbiology is restored!
Releasing the Emotions
As children we are hard-wired to seek approval, attention and protection from our parents. If a child did not have this encoding, a baby could easily wander off and be eaten by a lion, so it was important to have this need for mom’s and dad’s attention. In the animal kingdom, at some point a young lion would be told it’s time to break ties with mom and be on your own – be free. No more mama! Unfortunately, humans replace the need for mom’s and dad’s attention with other stimuli. We discover the chemical high from a hormone called dopamine (the “I gotta have it now” hormone). We become infatuated with other stimuli to feel satisfied, safe and secure – using coffee, dark chocolate, shopping, money, success, sports, alcohol, drugs and the like as our happy juice!
Perhaps the most damaging is the childlike protective patterns of behavior we project on the screen to deliver the illusion of being safe and secure. Of course it is only a temporary dose of security, so we build on these emotional patterns as we age, desperately trying to find that deep permanent sense of safety, security and contentment in all the wrong places. For example, let’s say you never felt fully loved by your parents. There may have been a sibling who they seemed to love more. To survive and feel safe you took on the role of becoming a “pleaser,” thinking, “They have to love me now because I am doing everything I can to please them.” As an adult still projecting the role of the pleaser on the screen, you find yourself exhausted and unfulfilled, working 24/7 to please everyone else. Soon, you begin to resent those closest to you because you feel you give so much and get nothing in return.
This resentment and exhaustion literally pounds away at the bugs and neurotransmitters in your gut, making it harder and harder over time to cope with additional life stressors. The blame and resentment builds and you become distraught, depressed and feel hopeless! When we commit to working with our minds to change these behavior patterns, we may feel that the task is impossible. We cannot change our minds because these molecules of emotion are not stored in the mind – they are lodged in the fat cells of the body!
The Lighten Up! Emotional Freedom Cleanse
In Ayurveda, all of our cleanses are basically designed to help us become better fat burners. Teaching the body to burn its own fat is how we begin to release the old pent up destructive molecules of emotion. Our Lighten Up! Emotional Freedom Cleanse is all about resetting fat burning while strengthening digestive and detox pathways. This is a four day guided cleanse with the main emphasis on gaining access to and releasing old destructive patterns of behavior. But releasing the emotions stored in the fat cells may not be enough – there has to be an awareness of the habits and patterns we wish to release so that we do not repeat them simply out of habit. Conscious-awareness completes the process by shedding light on the patterns we want to change and the neural networks we would like to retrain.
To this effect, I have created a new series of emotional releasing self-inquiry videos that will guide you step-by-step to this place of emotional freedom during the cleanse. While the body is cleansing and releasing toxic and emotional fat, I guide you through a process of action steps to free yourself from destructive patterns. I ask you to make new commitments and emotional resolutions, and then we dig in to discover what old emotional patterns are sabotaging your relationships and ability to do the things that you know are good for you.
Ayurveda literally means “the truth of your life” (ayur = life; veda = truth). The goal is to stop acting based on old and unfulfilling emotional patterns, stop needing the attention of others, and stop basing your actions and mood based on everyone else’s behavior so you can “be free”, let the truth of you out and start “doing you” perhaps for the first time ever.
Join me on this journey that will change you life in our Lighten Up! Emotional Freedom Cleanse.
All material provided from LifeSpa for the Lighten Up! Emotional Freedom Cleanse is provided for informational or educational purposes only. Schedule a private Ayurvedic consult or with a physician regarding the applicability of any opinions or recommendations with respect to your symptoms or medical condition. The instructions and advice presented from LifeSpa for Lighten Up! are in no way intended as medical advice or as a substitute for medical counseling. The information should be used in conjunction with the guidance and care of your physician.
Consult your physician before beginning this program as you would any detox, weight loss or weight maintenance program. Your physician should be aware of all medical conditions that you may have as well as the medications and supplements you are taking.
Those of you who are on diuretics or diabetes medication, have liver or gallbladder disease or take any medications, should proceed only under a doctor’s supervision.
As with any plan, this cleanse should not be used by patients on dialysis or by pregnant or nursing women.
You must be at least 16 years of age or older to do Lighten Up!.
1. Gerson M. The Second Brain. Harper Collins. New York. 1998
2. Pollan M. Cooked. A Natural History of Transformation. Penguin Group NY. 2013
5. Pert, C. Molecules of Emotion. 1997. Simon and Schuster
The Lighten Up! Emotional Freedom Cleanse is a 4 day at-home mind body renewal guided by Dr. John Douillard, DC. Lighten Up! is actually designed to help us achieve emotional freedom from patterns that are no longer serving us. These emotions are stored, believe it or not, in your cells. Teaching your body to burn fat, as we will do in this cleanse, primes your body and mind to make lasting commitments to change, and to stick to your resolutions.
The Lighten Up! Cleanse includes detailed instructions and protocols, self-inquiry lecture videos and exercises to guide in releasing old mental and emotional patterns.