by Connie Amundson, D.C.
The clock is ticking. The countdown has begun. Less than one year from now, we will have begun to experience the ramifications of the Y2K (Year 2000) computer bug. Will our computer-dependent water, electrical, sewer, agricultural, manufacturing, distribution, and transportation systems be fully functioning, slightly inconvenienced, or massively shut down? At this point, the only certainty is the uncertainty of the ramifications of this worldwide problem; do you see the value of hoping for the best and preparing for the worst?
Of particular concern to many in the healthcare field is the possibility of the failure of high-tech medicine. If electrical systems fail, if embedded computer chips disrupt diagnostic and therapeutic equipment, if computer systems shut down, if Medicare can't function, if prescription medicines become less available, the glory of Western technology may very well come crashing down like a house of cards. If it does, what will you do? Do you assume modern medicine will be there to rescue you whenever you break the laws of health? Or do you put your faith in the healing power within you? In light of the uncertainties, doesn't it make sense to do everything you can to increase the odds that your health will be Y2K compliant?
According to the Y2K Citizen's Action Guide published by The Utne Reader, anyone who is dependent on life support devices that use electricity should contact the manufacturer and get their assurance in writing that the device will function correctly and safely. Also, speak to your doctor and express your concerns about the devices. Ask your doctor what alternatives there are to electronic or electrical medical devices, or what you can do if the device fails for any reason. Be sure to register with your local Emergency Management office.
Frail and/or elderly people with particular medical problems requiring a caregiver, and people with other disabilities, must make special plans for their safety in the event that emergency services fail. Those who have the following conditions may be especially at risk and should take special precautions: acute or chronic respiratory illnesses, heart ailments, unstable or juvenile diabetes, dependence on tube feeding, epilepsy, tracheotomies, urinary catheters, colostomies, and dialysis dependence.
Sixteen years of clinical practice have shown me that health truly does come from within and that the healing power of nature is seemingly miraculous, provided that certain conditions for health are met. Most of the following suggestions for creating optimum health are common sense and have been touted by health promoters for millennia. Wouldn't it be wonderful if you were to use this year to do everything you can to improve your health in every way you can and to encourage your family, friends, and neighbors to do the same?
A year from now, if the infrastructure holds, the worst that will have happened is that you will be healthier, happier, and wiser. So, here's my wish list for you. Don't you feel that you deserve a lifetime of health and well-being?
Avail yourself of regular chiropractic care. Research shows that anyone from newborns to senior citizens can be healthier with the help of this low-tech healthcare system. Many of my colleagues recommend once a week visits. Wouldn't it be wonderful if you and your loved ones could take advantage of these health benefits? Today many chiropractors offer a convenient, affordable way for people to avail themselves of this optimum level of care for lifelong wellness. Ask your chiropractor whether she or he has such a plan.
If you utilize mid-tech healthcare systems such as naturopathy, homeopathy, or acupuncture, check with your providers about their plans for maintaining their laboratories and other diagnostic systems, and an adequate supply of pharmacy products.
Take a basic first-aid course, learn CPR, take an emergency medical training and fire safety course.
Quit smoking. Study after study, smoking comes out on top as the most deleterious health habit. Be sure to avoid secondhand smoke as well.
Relax and decrease your lifestyle stress. Stress moves the more primitive centers of your brain into dominance at the expense of the neocortex, the seat of humanity's higher-self functions. Are you looking forward to this opportunity to enjoy life more? To decrease your stress, get Alphabiotic alignments, meditate, get a massage, play, while away your time in idle chats with friends over tea, work less, spend less.
Get plenty of suitable exercise. Dr. Peter D'Adamo, in his book Eat Right 4 Your Type, recommends different types and intensity of exercise depending on your blood type: gentle, calming exercise such as yoga, tai chi, or ambling walks for Type As; vigorous, sweat-inducing exercise for Type Os; and something in between for Types B and AB.
Eat nourishing food; organic, locally produced fresh food is best. Again, refer to Dr. D'Adamo's book for some fine-tuning if you're already doing well in this regard. I have spoken with several Type Os who were relieved to discover that they were not suffering from early Alzheimer's but a food intolerance to wheat!
Turn off the TV and go to bed! Most Americans are chronically sleep-deprived, and the effects on their health are disastrous. Before electricity (!) people slept nine to ten hours every night. Researchers currently recommend eight to nine. Sleep deprivation bathes your brain with the stress hormone hydrocortisone (a k a cortisol), which results in numerous ill effects on mental functioning as well as on the immune system.
Eliminate toxins from your food, water, and air. Buy organic, locally grown produce and meat/fish/fowl wherever possible. Purify your indoor air (where you likely spend most of your time) with an air purifier and purify your drinking and shower water with a water purification system. Another source of toxins is the mercury amalgam fillings in your teeth. Use nontoxic household and personal care products.
Attune yourself to your highest purpose and put your faith in the divine plan for your life. In her newsletter, astrologer Madeline Gerwick-Brodeur writes that the four months of Mars retrograde beginning in March are nature's way of providing us with the cosmic energy to do just that.
Surround yourself with peace, love, and harmony. Uplift your body/mind/spirit unity in whatever way suits you best.
Share your experience in creating a healthier you with your friends, family, and neighbors, thereby creating a healthier, happier community.
Above all else, know that your innate healing potential is more intelligent, intricate, balanced, delicate, and powerful than any human intervention ever conceived. Most of the time, our efforts are most effective when we simply eliminate interference with that inner wisdom.
I hope that reading this list has inspired you to take action. Wouldn't it be wonderful if by working together, we can use the health challenges of the Y2K problem as a way to creatively transform our communities and ourselves? I believe that we can and will.
Dr. Amundson practices with Dr. Darcy Fox at Viewridge Chiropractic, where they can be reached at (206) 522-6339. Dr. Amundson is also available for corporate wellness program consultations and presentations.