…I will remember that there is art to medicine as well as science, and that warmth, sympathy, and understanding may outweigh the surgeon’s knife or the chemist’s drug…
– taken from Hippocratic oath
I will say in advance that this article is charged with some emotion and “judgment” towards our men. As most of you know I write many articles around support of our men and how the landscape of the healing arts world leaves them behind. However, in the fields of fertility they do not play fair. I write this after another interaction with one of my female clients recently that echoed the story I have heard way too often…
“I am still not pregnant, I am now on Letrozole (or insert one of many ovulation stimulating drugs), I feel awful and all of my tests say that I am hormonally healthy. My husband finally got checked out and it appears his sperm is weak. “Is he taking any action to improve his sexual health”. NO, he supports me and Maya massage and herbs and doctors but there is no way he will do any of this….”
Common Letrozole side effects may include:
- dizziness, drowsiness, weakness, tired feeling
- hot flashes, warmth in your face or chest
- bone pain, muscle or joint pain
- flushing (warmth, redness, or tingly feeling)
- increased sweating
- swelling, weight gain
It is at this point that I have to swallow my anger. I have to allow judgment to roll off my back as my client sits in front of me feeling defeated. Feeling like she has failed- like her body has failed and that she still has to carry the entire burden of the infertility diagnosis herself. It further astonishes me how many couples in this scenario- or should I say how many women- are willing to undergo expensive and invasive IVF treatments before the male partner tries to improve his fertile health. Again, I always hear- “he is so supportive of all the things I do”. Umm- of course he is- he doesn’t have to do anything inconvenient or invasive to his body. I am fully aware that this is not all men. But I write from first hand experience and my experience is that this is the common story.
Emotions aside, I can come into a place where there is compassion for a man who receives a diagnosis of poor sperm and reproductive health. Those words pierce straight to the heart of ego. And, in a society where men already feel isolated from emotional expression it can be an uphill climb to face the reality that they are not the warrior-creator-provider that the stories of conquer and kings make us all believe they should be.
Times are different, our bodies are different and face different challenges with stress and toxicity on many levels. This is not exclusive to the sensitive female system. Stress typically effects our hormone health first as the brilliance of life will not allow creation to continue if the landscape is barren and void of nourishment. This effects men equally to women. Women just speak of it more often as we have a moon cycle that alerts us to imbalance every month.
(I do want to insert here that many of my beloved friends, clients and colleagues identify as female with male type bodies. When I speak of women and females here I speak of those with female parts regardless of gender identity- and vice versa- as stress and fertility affect us all :)… However, this issue lends itself more to the straight, heterosexual population.)
Details of the infertility epidemic and what resources can be helpful for our men….
A diagnosis of infertility comes after a couple is unable to conceive after one year of trying. According to statistics from the CDC 35-40% of issues come from female imbalance, 35-40% come from male imbalance and the rest is of equal imbalance in both partners. This information alone should hopefully spark awareness to the importance of shared responsibility in this delicate, important and miraculous process.
Common causes of infertility for both men and women are:
- Stress and trauma
- Hormone imbalance
- Poor diet and lifestyle- including being overweight
- History of chronic disease
- Medication use
- Recreational drug use including tobacco and marijuana
- Past or recent sexual infections
- Abdominal surgeries
Causes of infertility in men:
- Low sperm count and motility of sperm
- Erectile dysfunction
- Ejaculation issues and obstruction
- had one or two undescended testicles when you were a baby or child
- have a hernia in your groin- very common in men
- Hormone replacements and steroid use- testosterone.
- All of the above- stress, trauma, diet, lifestyle, smoking, drug use etc.
When my clients (mostly women) come in to see me around their reproductive health we start by looking holistically at all of the above factors. When it comes to baby making we must all remember that just because the fetus grows within the mother and is mostly nourished by her, the health of that initial beautiful organism is affected by the health of both cells from sperm and egg. What that sperm carries (stress, toxins, trauma) can greatly influence if and how that fetus develops. Both parts must be healthy and vital for life to respond optimally. When wanting to create a family- the vitality of the whole family organism should be addressed- mom, dad, baby/ mom, mom, baby/ dad, dad, baby- or whatever lovely structure your family takes.
So, how do we approach the male bodied partners out there who need some guidance around this joint effort plan in parenting? First, we acknowledge how the male dynamic is mostly NOT wired to self nurture. We meet them where they are and give them information in a way that supports and doesn’t diminish them. (And, yes, maybe a few harsh words of reality) There is NO shame in needing a little assistance in our reproductive health. MEN- of course you need assistance. Modern stressors affect us all-like I said. They affect all and affect us first in our endocrine balance which affects our sexual vitality. You are not less of a man because you battle and experience the same stress triggers as most every other man- and woman- walking. We all just need to talk about it more.
Next, we provide resources and solutions that are simple. My recent client knows that there is no way her husband will come to see me so we created a plan where she would teach him the abdominal massage for her and she would also do the massage for him. This creates intimacy that is also nourishing the tissues and organs of the reproductive systems- win win. We also talked about herbs and foods for him that he could easily incorporate.
For the man who is more willing to be an active participant- I strongly suggest that everything the woman does- the man also does. If she is going to alter her diet and lifestyle to more balance and health- so should he. If she is going to take nourishing herbs for her reproductive system- so should he. I will also insert here that regardless of fertility challenges, we want healthy babies and these steps should be taken by ALL couples looking to conceive.
Support for the male body
Herbs– when deciding to take herbs please work with someone experienced in the field of health. Also, diet and lifestyle must be addressed for any plant’s healing properties to have full positive affect on the body.
- Saw Palmetto berry ~Saw Palmetto is nourishing to the entire endocrine system, which may help improve overall reproductive function in men
- American Ginseng Rt. ~This hearty root is considered to be one of the best male sexual tonics. Clinical observation has shown American ginseng to to support healthy libido, erectile dysfunction and enhance male sexual performance.
- Maca~ In a human study of 9 men who were given gelatinized maca for 4 months at 1,500 – 3,000 mg a day experienced an increase in libido, sperm count, motility of sperm, increased DHEA levels, decreased anxiety and stress, lowered blood pressure, balanced iron levels and an increase in adrenal androgens.
- Yohimbe Bark ~Yohimbe has been found to increase circulation to the erectile tissues; aiding in physiological and psychogenic (mental) impotence. Impotence; the inability to sustain erection, is the most common sexual disorder among men.
Diet and Lifestyle- all things worth doing take time. Allow your body to be nourished before you try to conceive.
- Foods high in Zinc~ Zinc has been widely researched in relation to the reproductive health in men. You can easily supplement with zinc and I recommend zinc rich foods as the body more readily uses foods for our nourishment (as long as gut health is in check). Foods high in zinc are: Oysters, spinach and greens, organic lamb and beef, pumpkin seeds, cashews.
- Organic foods~ organic does matter when we talk fertility. Some of the most potent endocrine disruptors come on our foods in the form of pesticides and antibiotics. Fresh, clean and organic foods nourish the body and help keep digestion moving and the liver in optimal filtering health.
- Removing toxins~ Environmental toxins are harsh enough but add tobacco and other drugs to our liver, lungs and body and we have a cocktail of major hormone disruption. Habits are not easy to break and I do not take lightly the journey of quitting tobacco, alcohol, recreational drugs etc. I will propose these questions however: Is the health of the fetus important? Are you willing to adjust your lifestyle to make space for a healthy new baby?- There is no judgment here at all. Just necessary questions as life is not a game to play with.
- Stress management~ Emotional and physical stressors are- in my opinion- the most damaging to our entire system and reproductive health. Find ways to balance your work and your play. Have a creative outlet. Exercise. Take up some mindfulness practices such as meditation and breath. Massage and self- care are very important. (The Maya abdominal massage is excellent for reproductive health in both women and men). Spend more time in nature- alone and with your partner. Have loving, playful and pleasurable sexual connection :).
This journey through the infertility diagnosis is emotional and taxing. Sharing equally in the responsibility can help ease the levels of stress assumed mostly by the female. Less stress on one partner= more love between both partners= better baby making.
If you are finding that there is an imbalance in the desire for shared responsibility please reach out. Men- do not feel ashamed to talk about how to nourish your sexual health. Women- do not feel alone in the journey. We can find balance and solutions for the health of our children who in turn will bring hopeful, healthful love to this Earth.
Other articles you may find helpful:
P is for Prostates..
I have contemplated writing about SIBO for a couple of years but hesitated for many reasons. Mostly because there are a vast number of rabbit holes one can Google down when you search for SIBO information. And because I really wanted to work with more SIBO clients and relate my personal experience rather than completely regurgitate information I read. I have/have had SIBO. And, typically when I have experienced something myself I can access my inner guru and relay some clear answers.
With SIBO I don’t have many answers, and frankly no one really does as it is a relatively new pathology of the gut. However, I feel called to speak on some of the common veins that run through every single one of my clients, and myself, with regards to etiology and recovery. What I will discuss is in relation to the work I do in supporting the human body through trauma and stress through abdominal massage, breath and body awareness. And how unreleased stress and tension in the body- specifically the abdomen- will lend itself to SIBO through rapid decrease in motility function (I will explain this later).
Why I say I have/ have had SIBO is that I don’t really know if it every completely goes away. My recent test of last year was negative but then some minor symptoms crop up and I simply wonder. I talk about this with my clients who come in with desperate eyes looking for answers to alleviate some of their feelings of failure in healing SIBO. I talk about this because it opens the door to working with the body where it is at- learning to really tune in and make lasting life changes rather than thinking that there is a start and finish.
True, many do completely live symptom free and I find those are the ones who have embraced the many changes that are necessary to ensuring that SIBO doesn’t return. This is not what most want to hear because it requires deep work on the emotional level to have that self care mastery and sense of your body. And, this is where finding someone to guide you into your body to address the stress triggers can really help you walk that path. AND- it doesn’t have to look perfect which is why I also say that you may just have to deal with SIBO, on minor levels, for some time. Because stress does exist and you have to exist so there’s that dance.
Ok- so for those of you who have NO idea what SIBO is lets dive in:
SIBO is short for small intestinal bacteria overgrowth. It is a condition where large amounts of bacteria populate the small intestine causing a variety of health symptoms not only in the gut but in the entire body- because as we know, the gut is like grand central station for the majority of our bodily functions. In fact, the symptoms of SIBO are so closely related to IBS (which is only a list of symptoms and not something I consider a real diagnosis) that many doctors are calling SIBO the new IBS. A study published in the Townsend Letter found that 84% of IBS patients presented with SIBO when tested.
- Gas and bloating after almost anything you eat, especially carbohydrates.
- You take probiotics and feel worse
- Abdominal pain, discomfort, cramps
- Mood disorders
- Constipation, diarrhea, or a combination
- Nausea and heart burn
- Fatigue and brain fog
- Malabsorption of nutrients
- Systemic pain
- Unexplained weight gain or loss
- Hormone imbalances
There are also many diseases now being linked to SIBO like fibromyalgia, thyroid disorders, Crohn’s disease, cystitis, colitis, skin disorders and many more. If you have any of the above symptoms and have been diagnosed with IBS with no success in eradicating your symptoms, I highly recommend getting tested for SIBO.
Testing and Treatment
There are a couple different testing methods but the preferred is the hydrogen/methane breath test. The unwanted bacteria that populate the small intestine get really cozy and wait for you to eat anything that turns to sugar. When they feed on your pasta and wine they then produce the gasses hydrogen and methane. These gasses are not naturally produced by human cells making them distinguishable in the breath test. (the breath test is a slightly long, annoying but mostly accurate test). These gasses are what give you the uncomfortable digestive symptoms and prevent your food from being properly absorbed and passed into your colon properly. The key in treating SIBO is then to eradicate these bacteria, and this is where incredible confusion and frustration sets in for most people.
There are two main treatment options for killing the bacteria: antibiotics and a more natural approach using antibacterial herbs and supplements. I am not going to go into what works and what doesn’t because it really depends on you, how well you address the underlying causes associated with SIBO and how diligent you are with diet. Also, what I have found, as with most imbalances in the body, is that there is not a one size fits all protocol with these things. However, you must kill the buggers so choose a course that suits you. And studies have shown a 75% reduction rate in symptoms once the bacteria has been addressed. Unfortunately, many think that like other bacterial infections in the body, if you take the prescribed course of antibacterials then you are done. This just is NOT the case- sorry to say- and is how many clients end up finding me, or others who can help, to guide them in the other intricacies of SIBO that allopathic medicine falls short to address.
Alongside antibacterials, most all natural and allopathic doctors will also prescribe some sort of supplementation or prescription medication to address motility of the gut. They are now also aware that these bacteria love to make little nests in biofilm so biofilm disruptors are recommended. All of this in combination with a very rigid diet that omits most all carbohydrate intake.
In brief the standard protocol is:
- Take antibacterials
- Follow one of the many recommended diets (Gaps, FODMAPS, SCD, Elemental)
- Take prokinetics for motility
- Biofilm disruption (I won’t go into this but is necessary)
Looking at this seems pretty straightforward, unless you have SIBO and know the path is not that linear. What the above protocol fails to recognize is what impairs gut motility in turn impairs digestive enzyme production, transit of food, absorption of nutrients and so on.
How did this happen?! And the one common denominator- STRESS
SIBO isn’t something you just wake up with. It creeps in over time unfolding symptom after symptom which makes it difficult to really pinpoint when the story began. I have found that for most with SIBO they already had a compromised digestive system for some time. I hear from a lot of my clients that they have lived with minor digestive issues for so long that it became a normal state. This alone triggers a constant stress response in the body which over time impairs motility. The main causes of SIBO are also some of the main causes of many other intestinal disorders.
- Improper diet and lifestyle
- Parasitic infections
- Food poisoning
- Antibiotic use
- Long term medication use- including birth control pills
- Abdominal surgeries
- Excessive stress leading to reduction in digestive enzymes and gut motility
If current stress levels are not addressed then motility and in turn digestive enzyme production, nutrient absorption and so on have a very difficult time in being restored. Even if we start to heal the lining of the gut through supplementation and diet, there is still no guarantee that SIBO stays at bay until the motility function of the digestive system is restored. And, gut motility functions properly in your parasympathetic “rest and digest” state. It relies on your parasympathetic and enteric nervous system to fire the communication signals to the body that it is safe and to unwind the contracted intestinal tract.
An important protective mechanism against SIBO is proper small intestine motility via the migrating motor complex because stasis promotes bacterial overgrowth. – Allison Siebecker, MD ‘Townsend Letter’
If your abdomen and intestinal motor function stay in contraction then you will continually perpetuate the pile up of bacteria in your small intestine rather than it travelling to your colon where it belongs or can be dealt with. If your body stays in your stressed flight or fight mode then your system signals digestion to slow and reduces enzyme production. Digestive enzymes and healthy levels of stomach acid are necessary not only for breaking down our food for absorption, but stomach acid is a first line of defense against more incoming bacteria on our food. But, coming back to the point of stress, even if you supplement with digestive enzymes, which I encourage in the beginning, if the motor function does not move your food through properly then you will still fight the SIBO back up. Ok, I think you get the point.
When we think of stress we think of the daily grind of work, family, finances etc. We often overlook that the body registers improper diet, toxic environments, toxic thoughts and an unbalanced lifestyle as stress. If we truly want to understand how to heal and what our body needs we have to listen to it. Unwelcome bodily symptoms and disease are literally signals from our beloved bodies that it needs help. But rather than slow down and listen and tune in, we create more chaos by constantly seeking “the little blue miracle pill” and we never actually heal.
Deep down we ALL know what is needed to create balance in our lives. Deep down we KNOW that most of our stress is self created. Deep down we all FEAR what it takes to really face our reality and take care of ourselves. But, I will tell you from experience, and from witnessing my clients’ recoveries, the more we come back to the our bodies and listen, the more we allow our fears to surface and address the stress trapped in our bodies, the easier actually taking care of ourselves is. It is really a big ol’ prescription of self-love and it is very human to fear that path- you are not alone.
Ok- mini tangent. What were we talking about? Oh, yes, SIBO…
As I said, the SIBO world is tricky to navigate and there is no miracle cure. But I can guarantee that the more you return to your body and reduce the stressors that keep the SIBO cycle going, the more you are going to be able to hear your own cues to heal and awaken your own inner gut guru. How do we return? We seek guidance and support that can help the body remember how to go with the flow. I have personally found abdominal massage and breathwork to be the most profound in assisting the enteric and parasympathetic nervous systems as both healing modalities address the abdomen directly. Reach out to practitioners who can hold witness to your stress and help you release it in a way that serves your body. Get some coaching. I have also found that most of my clients need someone to help them navigate the protocol their doctors have prescribed. But most of all, trust your body, trust yourself that you are strong enough to balance your own system and… trust your gut.
Are you curious about how abdominal massage and breath can help? Do you need help finding someone to support your journey? Want to know more about SIBO and my personal protocol? I am here…
Schedule a Coaching Session Now where you will get my insights. Additional sessions will include at home abdominal care and guided healing breathwork to help you release the stress in your belly.
In the Seattle area? Schedule an in person Healing Session Now.
All new clients- $10 off your first session. Existing clients- refer 1 person and receive $10 off your next session
I realize I just barely touched on all the mechanisms of SIBO as that was not the intent of the article. I have included links below to some highly intelligent doctors and specialists in this area that can elaborate.
www.chriskresser.com | www.siboinfo.com
For the past few years I have been weaving breath awareness into my sessions; many of you have experienced this. With some of you, we have gone into some deeper, more intentional breath patterns to help open up the body, unravel the thoughts of the overworked mind and release trapped and stagnant emotion. If you have experienced these deeper levels of release I am grateful for your trust of self and your trust in the space I hold for your healing.
In seeing these deeper releases I heard a call to better understand breath work in my own personal healing journey. I recently returned from a 10 day immersion into studying the effects of breath on the pain body and negative thought forms that are associated with our pain. Each day I dove into the most dark and uncomfortable corners in my body and mind. And each day I opened up to the trust of my breath and watched my body reveal some very old patterns that were holding my vitality hostage. I witnessed the same in those around me as I have in one on one client care.
The breath became a crystalline lens that allowed my intuition to “see” where stagnation, contraction and trauma was in the body of the person I was in healing relationship with. The hands on belly, womb and body work was then so much more profound as layers of guarding and disassociation had loosened.
Intentional/active breath work techniques are so healing because they are a catalyst to trust; trust of self and trust of the Universal flow and one-ness that we are all a part of. Breath awakens the body back to awareness of itself and helps connect the dots of unserving thought forms in relationship to contraction and dis-ease in the body. When this healing begins to wind in and we feel ourselves- our true selves- again, it is inevitable that we meet our heart; love always wins.
Your breath is yours and also the molecules that touch every other energy on this planet and beyond. How you breath and allow the trust in Universal life to flow is how your entire life flows. It is the most telling and intimate relationship you will ever have. Its gift is life and life wants nothing more than balance, healing and love. You have all of this already inside of you- you are your own healing force.
As we unlock our own ability to heal we need witness, we need teachers, we need support. We are meant to be in one-ness. We are a part of whole and to have someone stand by our side as we uncover our heart and soul strengthens our ability to trust and let go. I am here to be witness. I am here to teach you how to carry this into your own life. I am also here if you are ever interested in my story as I believe that when we can tell our stories from a place of healing we can uplift others to shine light on theirs and let go.
This work is not easy as true healing will bring our fears to the surface. Your body may release in ways you have not experienced before and you may have emotions you have buried rise up. But, on the other side is a life of more freedom and insight as you unlock your original medicine and allow your true light to shine. PLEASE REACH OUT WITH QUESTIONS. 🙂
SESSIONS CAN BE DONE VIA SKYPE AND ARE VERY POWERFUL IN THE SPACE OF YOUR OWN HOME
For most of my 30s I would wake in the morning with this underlying anxiety that would hit me with a subtle waive of nausea. The thoughts that accompanied this feeling would all be centered around this theme of “running out of time to prove my feminine worthiness”. In my mind I was racing against time, I was racing against myself and I also felt as though as I was racing against other women- which is a perpetuating factor, I believe, in our current imbalances. Above all, I felt alone. When we don’t connect and learn from one another we also perpetuate a shame around our bodies not working, not being loved, not loving ourselves and so on. This separation just compounds the feelings of unworthiness and embarrassment at being (insert age here) without a man and a baby- a perfect picture of balanced family-career-love.
The article below I wrote about 4 years ago for a class I was taking. It is NOT about what you think it is but I am sure I will generate extra curiosity and traffic from the title. And, I am open to discussing what you think it is about as I do hold space for sexual and sensual healing, but that is for another time…
It was a vulnerable moment a few years back as I started to share with others about my story. So vulnerable that it never made it to my blog page at the time. I am quite open now about my journey through trauma and the manifestation of my eating disorder but am also cautious that I do not share from a desperate emotional place (which my mind can slip into- I am sure I am alone in this ;)). I hold this belief that I can only really share my healing gifts and my journey once I am “healed” and see the other side of this affliction- addiction. This belief is damaging and dimming of my light. This belief tells me that I am “not worthy or good enough” now. This belief prevents me from putting my original medicine and service into the world and from sharing a lot of my story. And I know first hand that stories when shared in the right context do heal.
Maybe another one of the main reasons I did not publish the brief article is that I was unsure I wanted to directly work with others who suffer with ED. I already naturally attract many women AND men who struggle with this anyhow but I did not want to open the gates. I wanted to really understand my own process in healing and give myself enough space to see it for what it is before inviting it into my life through my work. The article is very “uncharged” emotionally and not even that personal- which is quite unlike me. It is informative and true and brief. But to claim that the Maya Abdominal and Clinical Visceral work I do could help someone’s recovery process from an eating disorder felt forced and unstable until I knew, I felt and lived the truth of the work I put into the world. Someone the other day quoted “there is no complete psychology without body work”. The body is a record keeper of our lives and therefore an amazing ally in recovery from trauma and addictions when it is approached in a therapeutic way.
My truth is the same as when I wrote the article about the healing effects of touch on eating disorders, but I know it on a cellular level now. I am full of gratitude that the Maya Abdominal work called me into service. And the more I dive under my own stories the more I realize why I am called to the many facets of work I do with others. I know that I will always be diving deeper into myself but I don’t have to reach some mountain peak of light and perfect love in order to heal others. In fact, the compassion, intuition and healing gifts I carry come from walking through the fire and the storms.
I practice the return to my body each day. This is not easy as I have spent most of my life outside of my body. I place my hands on my womb and my belly and thank the guides that led me down this path. I come home to myself and I still have to give “ED a rubdown” from time to time to bring myself back into a relationship based in compassion instead of trauma.
Giving ED a Rubdown (written in 2012)
Everything we believe about ourselves, our emotions and the majority of our physiological functions comes from our core center. This is why maintaining healthy belly (gut) function is critical to overall wellbeing. Unfortunately, the belly is susceptible to so much damage from physical and emotional trauma. Some of these traumas have an obvious cause and effect relationship while others are so intertwined in the mind-body-spirit connection that most allopathic doctors unfortunately misguide, or simply miss, as they are not trained to address the body as a whole. This holds especially true with the damage that is caused from Eating Disorders (ED), of any type, especially Bulimia Nervosa (BN) and Binge Eating (BE).
Briefly, both BN and BE are characterized by dissociative episodes of excessive (binge) eating to the point of stomach dissention, dizziness and illness. BN is different in that the binge is followed by a purge of induced vomiting, laxative abuse and excessive exercise which put an enormous amount of stress and pressure on various parts of the belly. The side effects of both, and all forms of ED, are numerous and life threatening:
- Digestive impairment
- Esophageal tearing, burning and impairment
- Peristalsis impairment
- Autoimmune disorders due to leaky gut
- Severe hormone and chemical imbalances
- Malabsorption of nutrients
- Intestinal blockages
- Chronic constipation
- Emotional blockages
- SIBO- this is a new discovery for me and a journey I have much knowledge around (new addition to article)
- Chronic Pain (new addition)
The abdomen holds most of our vital organs and, according to TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine), each organ corresponds to a different emotion and energy channel. When we are shut down or damaged in one area the other organs can become stagnant and blocked.
Intervention and therapy are critical but unfortunately the integrative function of the body and the modalities that can begin to repair the deep physical and emotional trauma on a physiological level are missed. This is where the application of the healing effects of Maya Abdominal Massage, and other abdominal massage techniques, can begin to repair the body from the inside out.
~Maya abdominal massage techniques have been used for centuries to address dysfunction and imbalance in the pelvic bowl and belly. Maya abdominal massage therapies are founded on ancient Mayan healing techniques using external, noninvasive manipulation that repositions internal organs that have shifted, thereby restricting the flow of blood, lymph, nerve and chi. These techniques address position and health of the pelvic and abdominal organs. The work is best known for the correction of the prolapsed, fallen, or tilted uterus and for the prevention and treatment of benign prostate enlargement in men, and for relief of many common digestive disorders.~
This modality is incredible, intuitive, spiritual and nurturing. And, even more it addresses and heals a whole resume of symptoms that can correct some very emotional and debilitating conditions in women and men. Traditionally the issues targeted have been around fertility and digestive function with emotional clearing being a positive byproduct of this work. Now, however, a few Maya abdominal practitioners are working in the realm of eating disorder treatment and the positive outcomes have had a dramatically positive impact on the recovery process of the individual. The most interesting to me is the re-establishment of the natural serotonin process.
Serotonin is mainly produced in our gut. When our gut is damaged, or leaky, we are not able to produce the serotonin we need for proper mood support and digestion. Then, doctors prescribe serotonin reuptake drugs that pull any serotonin from the gut into the brain to stay there. Now, we have a condition where the body’s natural negative feedback process, or homeostasis, is broken and the gut is further impaired because it needs all that serotonin to function and on and on…
Individuals with eating disorders typically all have digestive dysfunction and depressed serotonin levels (notice I did not say depression). As the whole gut is slowly restored through gentle manipulation techniques like Maya abdominal massage, blockages and adhesions will release and the body will kick start itself back into a regular negative feedback cycle. Of course there are many layers and factors involved in this process. But as the energy flow between all of the organs is repaired and emotions are released, the individual will, hopefully, start to feel whole enough to tackle some of the deeper layers of recovery.
In my many years of research and self-discovery with such a debilitating and misunderstood disease I know that repair of the physiological body is a major catalyst to recovery. And, being able to bring somebody back to their internal light through hands on care is beautiful, emotionally healing and synergistic with our body’s natural state of balance.
“Learn to Listen to Your Gut”