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Essiac/Flor Essence as a Complementary Therapy

essiac-tea3Essiac and Flor Essence are herbal tea mixtures sold worldwide as herbal dietary supplements or health tonics, and which are often used as complementary treatments for AIDS, Cancer, Diabetes, and Gastrointestinal Diseases.

Essiac consists of 4 herbs: Burdock Root; Indian Rhubarb Root; Sheep Sorrel; and Slippery Elm (the inner bark).

Flor Essence reportedly contains the same 4 herbs found in Essiac plus 4 additional herbs: Watercress; Blessed thistle; Red clover; Kelp.

As with most natural remedies, batches of these mixtures may differ and contain the above herbs in different quantities or may contain additional ingredients, so the effect may not always be the exact same in different batches.

Essiac has its roots in the Ontario Ojibwa Native American tribe where the formula has been used for centuries for a slew of health conditions, and came to the west via a woman fighting cancer in the 1920s who passed th formula on to a nurse when she was on her deathbed many years later, claiming that it had cured her cancer. Read the rest of this entry

Tai Chi as a Complementary Therapy for Cancer

tai chi chen styleTai Chi (pronounced Tie Chee) is an ancient Chinese martial art that combines slow, focused body movements, meditation and deep breathing. The relaxed and deliberate movements of Tai Chi help develop balance, coordination and flexibility. Tai Chi is often referred to as “Meditation in Motion.”

Its name is derived from the philosophical term, “Tai Chi,” the first known written reference of which appeared in the Book of Changes over 3000 years ago during the Zhou Dynasty (1100-1221 BC). In this book it says that “in all changes exists Tai Chi, which causes the two opposites in everything.” Tai Chi means the ultimate of ultimate, often used to describe the vastness of the universe.

During a Tai Chi session, one moves slowly from one position to the next without stopping so that your body is in constant motion during the session. Because one must focus on breathing and the movements, tai chi helps focus one’s mind in a form of meditation.

The essential principles of Tai Chi are based on the ancient Chinese philosophy of Taoism, which stresses the natural balance in all things and the need for living in spiritual and physical accord with the patterns of nature. According to this philosophy, everything is composed of two opposite, but entirely complementary, elements of yin and yang, working in a relationship which is in perpetual balance. Tai Chi consists of exercises equally balanced between yin and yang, which is why it is so remarkably effective.

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Relaxation Techniques as Complementary Cancer Treatments

relaxationRelaxation techniques are basically various methods used to focus the attention on calming the mind and relaxing the muscles and include activities such as visualisation exercises, guided imagery, biofeedback, self-hypnosis, progressive muscle relaxation or deep breathing exercises.

Meditation and practices that include meditation with movement, such as yoga and tai chi, can also promote relaxation.

The goal is similar in all; to produce the body’s natural relaxation response, characterised by slower breathing, lower blood pressure, and a feeling of increased well-being.

Relaxation techniques work very well with children as they are all gentle exercises.

One of the major boons of relaxation training has been in lessening or alleviating chronic, severe pain. Such pain can arise from many different causes, including backache and chronic migraine or tension headaches, diseases such as cancer, and even as the unintended outcome of operations to control pain.

Relaxation Therapy is being used clinically for a range of medical problems, including the management of the side effects of such medical procedures as kidney dialysis and cancer chemotherapy, gastrointestinal problems like irritable bowel syndrome, and insomnia, emphysema and skin disorders.

Psychological therapies such as relaxation techniques as well as other approaches such as cognitive-behavioural therapy, can reduce pain in both children and adolescents with chronic headaches or other types of chronic pain and the effects can last for months.


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Music Therapy as a Complementary Therapy for Cancer

music therapy goofyMusic therapy is the use of music by trained professionals to encourage relaxation and enhance quality of life in people receiving health care. The hope is to relieve stress and promote well-being.

Some people experience reduction of symptoms and improved healing. If you love listening to music, this therapy might be right for you.

During music therapy, you listen to music or use musical instruments under the guidance of a music therapist.

Other types of music therapy include singing and writing songs. Music therapy may be used along with other therapies, such as art therapy.

Music therapy uses music and sound to help one express one’s emotions; cope with symptoms of a disease and its treatment; improve one’s emotional and physical well-being; develop self confidence and self esteem; develop or re-kindle a sense of creativity; and help one to relax and feel comfortable.

You don’t need to have any musical ability or experience to benefit from music therapy. It is thought that our brain and body respond naturally to sound, including the rhythm and beat of music.

Music therapy is one of the best types of therapy for children with cancer, because who does not like music? Music therapy allows them to have fun and forget about the pain, nausea and other problems they are facing in their fight against cancer, if only for a little while.

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Meditation as a Complementary Therapy for Cancer

meditatingMeditation is a type of mind-body therapy based on the connection between the mind and the body and how the health of one affects the health of the other.

Meditation is a state of deep concentration when you focus your mind on one image, sound or idea, such as a positive thought in order to increase mental awareness and calm your mind and body.

The aim is to be aware of thoughts that normally occupy your mind or to experience the sensations that flow through your body and mind.

One of the most important parts of meditation is conscious breathing, or being aware of the way that you breathe. Taking regular, slow, deep and quiet breaths helps to calm your body and mind.

It’s believed that this type of breathing will help lower blood pressure and help reduce stress and anxiety. There are many different types of meditation and most people try different kinds of meditation to see what works best for them.

Many individuals with cancer feel that meditation has been beneficial to them in various ways. Meditation can be done by individuals of any age and many children with cancer have profited from the benefits of meditation.


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Hypnosis as a Complementary Therapy for Cancer

hypnosisHypnosis is an altered state of awareness in which you are relaxed but have focused attention.

Clinical hypnosis by qualified hypnotherapists is a medically recognised therapy used to treat emotional or physical problems.

Hypnotherapy is a form of psychotherapy used to create subconscious change in a patient in the form of new responses, thoughts, attitudes, behaviours or feelings. It is undertaken with a subject in hypnosis.

Some reports show that hypnosis can help people to reduce their blood pressure, stress, anxiety, and pain. Hypnosis can create relaxing brain wave patterns. Some clinical trials have looked at how well hypnotherapy works for people with cancer.

According to various reports, hypnosis can help to reduce anticipatory nausea and vomiting. Anticipatory nausea or vomiting happens when people have had nausea or vomiting due to cancer drugs and they then have nausea or vomiting just before their next dose.


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