Lately, I have been very interested in alternative therapies to aid in diagnosis and provide strategies to promote healing. This is not my area of expertise, so I sought out some great professionals to answer my questions to relay this information to you!
Allow me to introduce Dr. Keith Hassinger, a 4th generation Chiropractor based out of Parma, Ohio. He has postdoctoral training in the interaction of lifestyle and genetics and is a Certified Chiropractic Wellness and Lifestyle Practitioner (C.C.W.P) through the International Chiropractic Association. He can be reached by email at [email protected] You can also reach him on his Clinic’s Facebook Page and on Twitter. Dr. Keith gives weekly advice through his video blog “60 Seconds to Life” available on Youtube, Facebook, and Twitter. This is the first in a two-part guest post series on the benefits of chiropractic care.
“I don’t have back pain. Why should I see a Chiropractor?” This is one of the most common answers I hear when I ask people, “Who is your Chiropractor?” What you need to understand is, that is like saying, “I am not obese, I do not need to follow a Paleo Diet.” The Paleo Diet is not for weight loss; it is to provide your body with what it needs from a dietary standpoint. Chiropractic is not about lessening pain or making your back feel more comfortable, it is about optimal function.
First, let’s take a step back. What system is in charge of coordinating how you function? Your central nervous system (CNS). Your CNS consists of your brain and spine (which is just an extension of your brain). Chiropractors check to see how this is functioning, not for the purpose of pain relieving, but so you can live the most amazing life possible! When your spine is functioning properly, the communication between your brain and body can be optimal. If this is not the case, then this can never occur.
Chiropractic is based on the fact that our bodies can heal itself. This is considered a vitalistic philosophy. The most important point I try to get across to people is that they are AMAZING. You have the ability to overcome any challenge you may be facing such as simple pains, to autoimmune diseases and cancers. We all know someone who has overcome these issues and you have the ability to be that person! You have this ability because you are meant to be healthy. We should be healthy our whole lives. No matter if we are 10, 20, or 80 years old. Why should we be healthy? Because our genes are programmed for health. Maybe you have been told that whatever diagnosis you have been given is because it’s genetic. If you have been told this, it is most likely false. Sure, there are a few genetic diseases, like Down’s Syndrome, but cancer, diabetes, heart disease, autoimmune diseases, etc are 100% lifestyle related! When I say lifestyle, I am referring to brain-body connection, eating, moving, and thinking. We have control over all of these.
We cannot change our genes, but we can change the way they are expressed. If we change our lifestyle habits, we can change the way our genes are expressed. If we have a positive thought versus a negative thought, we express different epigenetics. When we eat grain versus vegetables, we express different epigenetics. When our spine is functioning optimally versus when it is not, we express different epigenetics. Changes in epigenetic expression will result in different physiology being expressed. The physiology is always appropriate given the environment at that specific time. During a hard Crossfit WOD, my heart rate is going to be much higher than while writing this article. That’s not a mistake, that’s required. If you have a higher resting heart rate than most people, it’s because your body requires that. That doesn’t mean that you need to take drugs to lower it. You should do what is required for your body in all areas of life. This will give you the heart rate that you need.
Chiropractors look for what we call Subluxation. Essentially it is less than optimal function of the spine. Sometimes there is pain associated, sometimes there is not. Either way there is compromise in function. Chiropractors use what are called Adjustments to improve the function of the nervous system. There are many different techniques that all provide amazing outcomes. Adjustments can be performed by the Chiropractors hands or by different instruments. No matter the technique, the purpose is to improve the brain-body connection.
This is why Chiropractors see all kinds of miracles ranging from pains, migraines, ADD/ADHD, autoimmune diseases, arthritis, fatigue, poor mobility, dietary concerns, emotional problems, bed wetting, colic, allergies, addictions, depression, anxiety, learning disabilities, postural issues, etc. Remember, I am not saying the Chiropractor is treating these symptoms, Chiropractors simply allow optimal function of your brain-body connection. This how I look at the Paleo diet as well. Not a treatment, but providing the body the nutrients it needs, opposed to giving toxicity from foods a human should not be eating..…More to come in part 2!