Naturopaths advise patients to completely change their lifestyle: replace meat and carbohydrates with vegetables, fruits, herbs and nuts; eat slowly and chew carefully; engage in sports and change breathing methods; pay attention to the body and surrounding environment The relationship; no longer rely solely on the effects of drugs or surgery.
They are the stars of this clinic. A leech crawling on a person’s knees, it arched up, curled up into a ball, hesitated, just did not open its mouth to bite. It was supposed to pierce tiny teeth into the patient’s skin, break a blood vessel, and create a small natural miracle: the substance it secretes when sucking can help arthritis patients eliminate pain and inhibit inflammation.
Andreas Michelson heads the naturopathic department of the Immanuel Hospital in Berlin and teaches at Charité Hospital. His book “Healing with the Power of Nature” has long been at the top of the bestseller list.
”Are they too hot?” Andreas Michalson guessed. He is a professor of clinical naturopathy at the Charité Hospital in Berlin and the chief physician of the Immanuel Hospital. Michelson wore rubber gloves and picked up another leech, the most alive and kicking, from the glass bottle, but it obviously had no appetite.
”This is the case with biological therapy,” Michalson said with a sigh. “If it’s an injection, of course it will be much faster.”
Natural therapy often requires patience, whether it is a patient or a doctor. And this kind of patience is exactly what many doctors need, and the 56-year-old Andreas Michalson did it perfectly. The thin man wore a blue polo shirt and jeans under his white lab coat, rimless glasses and friendly eyes. He is currently the most popular naturopathic doctor in Germany and he is committed to providing patients with alternatives to medicines and examination equipment.
Treat people as a whole
Michelson’s book “Healing with the Power of Nature” has been at the top of the bestseller list for 13 weeks. In his book, he described how he practiced “modern natural therapy” in a clinic in southwestern Berlin. He wants to prove that medicine can be something else-calm, gentle, happy; doctors should see the whole person, not his organs; they should not focus on disease, but on health.
In Immanuel Hospital, you can smell not only the smell of disinfectant, but also the aroma of tea and herbs, such as myrrh or cardamom. In addition to doctors and nurses, qigong masters and art therapists work here. Signs such as “psychological psychotherapist” and “Ayurvedic nutrition therapy” hang on the door. The patient is not lying on his own bed, but as much activity as possible. Michaelson wanted to mobilize their enthusiasm for sports.
The morning exercise started. At 8 o’clock in the morning, 18 women and 2 men in the park were following a physical therapist’s instructions, shaking their knees and drawing circles in the air with their elbows. They must learn to be positive and optimistic and live vigorously. On the old oak tree above them, a willow warbler was singing.
A yellow jute bag hung on the patient’s shoulder, which read “Love Life”, and contained a schedule tailored to everyone’s interests. Sometimes, there are stool meetings, hand-made treatments and paraffin baths on the schedule, and sometimes psychogenic group meetings and respiratory therapy. Here, as long as you are diligent enough, you can gain health.
At 10 o’clock every day, it is not the doctor who comes to see the patient at the bedside, but the patient who goes to the doctor’s office. The two communicate on an equal footing, without worrying about privacy being tapped by the patient next door. Michalson personally invited the patient into the room, shook hands with him, and pulled out the chair to seat him.
He and his colleagues listened to patients all the year round about various illnesses, rheumatism, enteritis, migraine, high blood pressure, psoriasis, obesity, diabetes, and fibromyalgia that afflict the patients’ body and mind. In many cases, multiple illnesses occur at the same time, and the pain often gets worse. The side effects and uncontrollable interactions of many drugs make the predicament worse.
Andreas Michalson believes that natural medicine is a happy science. His employees think he is a nice boss.
Natural medicine research shows that leeches can relieve arthritis pain better than traditional therapies.
Some patients will write it down on a slip of paper, so as not to forget some kind of pain in the presentation. A woman said: “I seem to be locked up in a physical cage.” Another complained: “I don’t seem to be right anywhere.”
Michalson moved his chair and sat closer and asked, “What What makes you most uncomfortable?” He asked about the patient’s stress and depression, sleep and digestion. He said: “You have provided us with a lot of information, and we have to classify it so that you cannot take any risks.” Together with his colleagues, he finds the most suitable treatment for the patient, such as sucking leeches or cupping techniques. Strong temperature stimulation can awaken the strength of the patient’s body: recliners heated by infrared rays, cold storage at minus 110 degrees Celsius. Herbs are used, such as turmeric, which can relieve joint inflammation. “Two teaspoons a day,” Michalson recommended.
They want to strengthen their bodies and at the same time calm their souls. “Psychosomatic medicine” can help self-healing. The patients practice yoga and Tai Chi. “We can also improve the immune system function through relaxation training.” The chief physician explained to a woman with irritable bowel syndrome, “please take more walks. The forest is also a medicine.”
Be responsible for your own body
However, Michelson’s most powerful and versatile weapon is fasting. For many patients with diabetes, arthropathy and hypertension, fasting for a week can start a healthy revolution in the body and start a new light life. “Fasting is a heavy hammer,” said the doctor. “It is a sensory experience.”
The notice board in front of the attending doctor’s office has the results of their team’s research published in a well-known professional medical journal, proving their treatment. The effects of methods, such as massage for back pain, fasting for diabetes or yoga for high blood pressure. And these proofs are the bridge built by Michalson between natural therapy and modern medicine.
Many colleagues in orthodox medicine laughed at his treatment as a quack trick, an amateur home remedy. Since Michaelson and other representatives of natural medicine gave the scientific proof, the voice of criticism has faded. At present, even rheumatology specialists in orthodox medicine gave his speech enthusiastic applause.
In Michaelson’s bookshelf, you can see the “German Drug Directory” and textbooks on phytopharmacology. On a filing cabinet is a portrait of Sebastian Kneip, the “Father of Spa”. A poster on the wall shows a smiling Buddha. Michaelson works in front of a platform because “multiple evidence shows that sitting for a long time is not good for health.”
He calls his medicine “complementary medicine” rather than the more commonly used “alternative medicine”. He didn’t want to replace, but wanted to add. He appreciates orthodox modern medicine, especially its successful experience in first aid, but he also wants to enrich and revise orthodox medicine, especially in the field of chronic diseases.
Michelson strictly practices his beliefs. He ate the last curry sausage 11 years ago, and he smoked the last cigarette and drank the last glass of wine 10 years ago. He has been practicing meditation for 8 years. He is a happy person and is currently almost all vegetarian. It is also because he wants to protect the environment and thinks egg, milk and fish products are not so sustainable.
Some of his female patients were afraid of all non-plant drugs, so he comforted them with his pharmacological achievements, such as the very effective methotrexate. The bridge between naturopathy and orthodox academic medicine is two-way.
A group of ladies were sitting around the fasting table in the clinic restaurant. They came to Immanuel Clinic with great expectations. They waited for 3-6 months before they finally got one of the 60 naturopathic beds and could stay here for two weeks. In front of these female patients was a thin porridge or a glass of potato juice, with only chopped coriander as the seasoning. They eat their share with a teaspoon because it is slower than eating with a spoon.
”Here,” one of them said, “We feel that we are different.” The other cheered, “I used to feel stiff in my body every morning, but now this feeling has completely disappeared!” Another person was surprised: “I thought that only upper class people could enjoy this kind of medical treatment.” They proudly and excitedly told how fast fasting is easy, and how the effect of cold storage or cabbage wrapping is magical. They said: “Here, we feel very good.” But they also asked: “How do we get this kind of therapy at home? How can we do all this when we start working again?”
Natural therapy preached Self-treatment is therefore very demanding on patients. It makes them responsible for their bodies. “We let patients regain autonomy.” Chief physician Andreas Michalson described this.
Natural therapies suggest that many patients completely change their lifestyle: replace meat and sugar with vegetables, fruits, herbs, and nuts; eat slowly and chew carefully; engage in sports and change breathing methods; pay attention to the relationship between the body and the surrounding environment as never before ; No longer rely solely on the effects of drugs or surgery. This will be very hard, but it will eventually bring you happiness and enjoyment.
In the healing temple
In the day clinic, patients with milder conditions receive consultation and treatment for 7 hours each time. They fixed a picture of the “Rehabilitation Temple” on a display board with pushpins. The pillars of the temple are still exercise, nutrition and meditation. The therapist spends a lot of time and energy to arm their students and inspire them to lead a healthier new life.
In the room where the leech works, the curtains are closed. The doctor and the patients spoke softly. An Ayurvedic nurse came from the naturopathic clinic in the next building. Colleagues call her a “leech whisperer” because she has a special sensitivity to this sensitive animal. Now it starts to flip.
”It bit, a big bite!” a lady screamed joyfully. She put the leech on her arthritis thumb and said it felt like a sting by nettles. Two hours later, the leeches were full of blood, began to slide down, and were sent to the keeper to put them in the pool where the used leeches were kept. A treatment including 4-8 leeches costs 120 euros.
Old knowledge of a new medicine
Today’s medicine is based on “evidence”: what matters is not the authority of the white coat, but the effectiveness of the methods they use. Modern natural medicine also does not want to continue to be regarded as a pseudoscience that requires patients to close their eyes to believe, but strives to visualize and quantify its true effects. And its curative effect in the treatment of chronic diseases is refreshing and impressive.
Modern natural medicine positions itself as a part of orthodox medicine, not its substitute. It wants to integrate and supplement, not replace. For example, it does not reject chemotherapy, but helps patients better withstand the side effects of chemotherapy.
Natural medicine also wants to integrate the vast experience treasures of Chinese and Indian medical techniques. These experiences may seem old and outdated at first glance, but in fact natural sciences and Western medicine can benefit a lot from their overall understanding of humans.
Meditation in mind and body medicine is also very popular. Sebastian Kneip realized the unity of mind and body early on.
Traditional natural medicine
History: The monks retain the traditional natural medicine, and it handed down. Both orthodox medicine and natural medicine originated from ancient Greece, from the doctor Hippocrates (460 BC-370 BC). In the 19th century, spa masters such as the priest Sebastian Kneipp and nutrition experts such as Maximilian Bircher-Benner reinvigorated the forgotten natural remedies, sparking health and reform movements. Kneipp supporters, herbalists or reformists have long worked in isolation. But now the academicization of natural medicine has given it new rationality, making it integrated into orthodox medicine.
How it works: In ancient Greece, doctors thought of themselves as assistants to nature. To this day, enhancing self-healing ability is still the most important goal of natural medicine. It preaches the “toxic stimulant effect”, which is the body’s adaptive response to small stimuli. This can be achieved through exercise, massage, temperature changes, breathing changes or herbs and nutrition. “Detoxification” therapy (leeches) and fasting also serve this philosophy. Patients can carry out most of the treatments on their own, without the guidance and support of doctors.
Evidence: Since the 1990s, natural medicine has been systematically and scientifically studied, and it regards itself as part of empirical medicine. At that time, the United States established the Institute of Complementary Medicine within the framework of the National Institutes of Health. Today, as a complementary and alternative medicine center, it receives approximately $125 million in financial support each year. The National Cancer Institute also invested a similar amount of funds in this research. In Germany, this research is completely dependent on foundation funding. So far, only one project to treat hay fever supported by the German Science Foundation has been established. But naturopathy has become part of the German medical education system.
Traditional Chinese Medicine
History: Traditional Chinese medicine was influenced by Confucius and Taoism. Chinese medicine has a history of about 3000 years and advocates harmonious coexistence with nature, family and society. In 1956, it regained its vitality under the name of “traditional Chinese medicine”, and soon became “barefoot medicine” in economic difficulties. Today, traditional Chinese medicine is an export product.
Principle: In Chinese medicine, the power of imagination—qi plays an important role. The disease is interpreted as an imbalance between Yin and Yang. Traditional Chinese medicine mainly uses herbs and fungi for treatment, coupled with specialized nutritional intake guidance. Acupuncture is very popular in the West, but it is insignificant in China.
Evidence: Thousands of Chinese studies have not been published internationally. In the West, acupuncture has been deeply studied. There is no scientific basis for Qi and its context. Traditional Chinese medicine believes that acupuncture can improve knee and back pain better than painkillers, but critics believe that it is just a placebo effect.
history: a gift of the gods. With a history of 7,000 years, Ayurveda (literally “science of life”) is the oldest known medical technique in the world. Its centers are located in India, Nepal and Sri Lanka. After India’s independence in 1947, Ayurveda became part of India’s national health system. The Ministry of Traditional Medicine of India is in charge of medical standards and personnel training.
Principle: Ayurveda combines character and astrology, and diagnoses through pulse, tongue, urine, and stool. Massage, diarrhea, sweating and vomiting can detoxify the body.
Evidence: Since the 1960s, Indian exiles in the United States and Britain have been studying its effects. Compared with Western medicine, Ayurveda’s advantage lies in the treatment of diabetes and neurological diseases. Whether the intricate Ayurveda and Western medicine should be combined has been debated in the scientific community.
History: In order to focus the rise of medicine. In the 1970s, stress studies explored how important it is to relax the mind. Harvard cardiologist Herbert Benson studies Tibetan monks, and biologist Joe Kabajin exhibited “mindfulness stress reduction” therapy, which is now widely used attention training.
How it works: Psycho-neuroimmunology shows that stress weakens immunity. Humans can learn to use mental power to fight stress. Breath is the most important stress relief tool. In yoga, qigong and tai chi, breathing also plays a key role. They can help focus as much as meditation.
Evidence: Since psychosomatic medicine is rooted in major American hospitals, there have been many studies showing its effects. The German Society of Gynecological Oncology added yoga and meditation to its guidelines in 2011. Physical and psychological intervention is also a fixed therapy for the treatment of colitis and irritable bowel syndrome.
How to find a good natural therapist?
Do not believe promises to cure
cure chronic diseases is a complex process, and there is no panacea. The physician who claims to have found a cure independently may just want to sell his therapy. Don’t believe in the excuse that “the scientific community resists my medical discovery because it serves the pharmaceutical industry.” Keep your distance from such conspiracy theorists! Formal medicine can withstand research and testing.
Don’t spend big money
Be careful of therapies that demand sky-high prices. For example, certain necessary drugs need to be imported, so the cost is high. Although in some cases, botanical medicines are indeed imported from abroad, unreliable “magic herbs” must be rejected, especially when they are derived from protected plants or animals. All active ingredients of the medicine must be clearly marked, do not swallow any medicine with unknown ingredients! They may be poisonous.
Their enemies refused orthodox medicine
methods of natural therapy is “integration”, in order to support their way into the orthodox medicine. Decisively leave those therapists who ask you to stop or do not receive orthodox medical treatment at all!
Be careful invasive therapy
methods previously used in natural remedies, such as ozone therapy, with a certain traumatic, and now has been criticized. This also applies to other treatments that have not been fully studied, such as cell therapy.