Using Qigong to Reduce Cortisol, The “Stress Hormone”

Healers have known for years that practicing qigong reduces stress and energizes the body and mind. Now multiple studies from researchers have documented the exact degree to which qigong aids in balancing cortisol, otherwise known as the “stress hormone.” Besides improving your mood, reducing cortisol levels allow your body to heal and repair itself.

High levels of cortisol can cause, or contribute to, a variety of illnesses, such as:

  • Impaired cognitive performance
  • Blood sugar imbalances
  • Decreased bone density
  • Suppressed thyroid function
  • Degradation of muscle tissue
  • Contributes to high blood pressure
  • Lowering immune system’s defenses
  • Increased inflammation in the body
  • Increased abdominal fat, associated with heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes and metabolic syndrome

The National Institutes of Health have studied and recommended both qigong and tai chi in various articles. From their website, http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov, we read:“The instructions for attaining the state of enhanced Qi capacity and function point to the purposeful coordination of body, breath and mind (paraphrased here): ‘Mind the body and the breath, and then clear the mind to distill the Heavenly elixir within.’ This combination of self-awareness with self-correction of the posture and movement of the body, the flow of breath, and stilling of the mind, are thought to comprise a state which activates the natural self-regulatory (self-healing) capacity, stimulating the balanced release of endogenous neuro-hormones and a wide array of natural health recovery mechanisms which are evoked by the intentful integration of body and mind.”

TCM offers other remedies for stress, such as acupuncture and acupressure. The following tips are from www.finebalanceacupuncture.com:

PC6- Starting from the wrist, measure down with three fingers as shown in the picture to the right. Where your third finger touches the middle of your wrist is the acupoint. Take your thumb and apply firm pressure to this point until you feel some mild discomfort. Only apply enough pressure to interrupt the normal blood flow but not too much that it causes pain. Hold this pressure point and gently knead your thumb in a tight circular motion for about 2 minutes. Do this to both wrists and you will feel your anxiety descend immediately. This point is also good for nausea!

HT7- Apply pressure with your thumb at the point where your wrist forms a crease with your hand. Hold the acupressure point for about 2 minutes, applying a generous amount of pressure. This point is good for relieving tension.

K1- This is my favorite point especially at night when I want a good night’s sleep. In a sitting position, cross one legover your opposite leg and rest your foot on your knee. Start with your thumb between your 2nd and 3rd toes and draw a straight line down until you are about a 1/3 of the way down the foot. Push firmly on the center of your foot (see picture). Hold this pressure point and knead for at least 2 minutes and repeat on the other foot. This is a great point for anxiety and relaxation.

Ears- Gently massage your ears with your thumb and forefinger. There is no exact pressure point so simply give yourself a relaxing ear massage.Pull down gently on the lobes and rub the inner surface of the ear for about 2-3 minutes. When you relax and massage your ear, you will feel soothed and calm all over.

Click here for our podcast interview with Mingtong Gu

Click here for our review of Wisdom Healing (Zhineng) Qigong: Teachings by Mingtong Gu

Click here to read a review of Sound Healing: Lesson One

Click here to read a review of Sound Healing: Lesson Two

Click here to read a review of Sound Healing: Lesson Three

Click here to read a review of Sound Healing: Lesson Four

Click here to read a review of Sound Healing: Lessons Five & Six


Serial Dreams and Parallel Lives by Robert Moss

| by Merlian News

Serial dreams, in which we find ourselves returning, again and again, to a life that is not our waking life offer an invitation to gather first-hand data on the possibility that we are leading parallel lives in alternate realities that may also be parallel worlds. Some serial dreams may reflect that fact that one or more of our soul-selves is “out there”, leading its own life in an alternate reality that is separated from that or our dominant personality.

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Avoid Chronic Inflammation With The Right Diet

| by Merlian News

There’s been a lot of news the last few years about chronic inflammation and its debilitating effects on the body, but researchers are still unclear about the causes. Under normal circumstances, the body is supposed to “inflame” a little to mount an immune response and counteract infection — it’s when the body stays in that state that problems occur. As reported at www.easyhealthoptions.com : “ Like every system in the body, the key is balance – because inflammation does have a serious downside. It’s a slippery slope: A normal healing response can progress to an ongoing inflammatory process that spreads throughout the body under the right (or rather, wrong) conditions…”

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The Benefits of Rooibos (Redbush) Tea

Long used in Africa, and touted for its reputed medicinal properties, redbush tea has been the subject of increased research over the last few decades. As we read on www.livestrong.com: “Redbush tea is a beverage brewed from the dried leaves of the rooibos plant, a low-growing shrub native to South Africa and known scientifically as Aspalathus linearis. The herbal tea gets its name from the English translation of rooibos, which means “red bush” in Afrikaans.

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The Health Benefits of Salt Caves

| by Cheryl Shainmark

Salt caves have been associated with healing for hundreds of years, and are a perennial favorite of European and Asian spa devotees… Himalayan pink salt is supposed to be the best and the purest for therapeutic purposes, but any salt minerals should work. Obviously, it can be pretty hard to trek to the Himalayas for the real deal, but not to worry. In the last few years “salt caves” have opened all over the country.

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The Mouth-Body Connection by Gerald P. Curatola, DDS

| by Cheryl Shainmark

The Mouth-Body Connection is a must read – whether you are suffering from chronic disease, or just want to bring your health to a new level, the information and insights in this book can help. Dr. Curatola has brought together thirty years of dental experience along with the latest science and developed a program for oral and body health  called The Curatola Care Program.  As detailed in the book, the program consists of learning about the natural micro-biome of the mouth, the hazards of inflammation, and the role of diet, exercise and stress reduction.

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Top 10 Tips to Protect Your Eyes from the Sun by Marc Grossman, OD, LAc

The skin and the eyes are the two parts of the body that get direct contact with the sun. The sun’s rays can burn the outer layers of the eyes, just as the rays can burn the skin. Sunglasses help your eyes filter light and they protect the eyes from ultraviolet light that may contribute to conditions such as-cataracts and macular degeneration.

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A Natural Immune System Booster by Mitzi Adams

Your personal assistant is ready when you are when it comes to virus protection. Who is this assistant? You! Your own body’s ability to keep germs at bay and keep your immune system strong is right at your fingertips — literally! With the ancient art of Jin Shin Jyutsu , there’s a way to help yourself through accessing your body’s energy system. This time-honored method to fight-off viruses is also an excellent way to help speed-up the recovery time even if you’ve gotten sick. Learn to quell your worry by applying your hands to powerful locations in the body called “ safety-energy locks.”

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Merlian News Podcasts with Master Mingtong Gu

| by Merlian News & Team

“Master Mingtong Gu is an internationally recognized teacher and healer in Wisdom Healing Qigong, who received his training from a variety of Grandmasters of China and Tibet and at the largest Qigong medicine-less hospital in China. As founder of The Chi Center, he helps lead a journey of health and happiness… Master Gu received Qigong Master of the Year Award from the 2011 World Congress on Qigong and Traditional Chinese Medicine. He is the author of several publications including Wisdom Healing Qigong: Activate and Embody Wisdom and Energy for Health, Healing and Happiness and Sound Healing Technologies .” In this two part podcast, Merryn Jose talks with Master Mingtong Gu about: What is Qigong & Wisdom Healing Qigong, How Wisdom Healing Qigong can reverse aging and illness, The journey of Qigong and when someone begins, Who can be helped by Qigong, What age to begin, What conditions are helped, How learning Qigong from a Qigong Master is helpful, How soon a student can feel the benefit, Special Meditation in Part Two and much more!

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The Many Healing Qualities of Lion’s Mane Mushrooms

Are you familiar with Lion’s Mane Mushrooms? They have become the hot item for healthy eating. Vegetarians love them for their high protein content, while doctors and naturopaths go to them for their many healing qualities. Known by a variety of different names, such as bearded tooth mushroom, satyr’s beard, hedgehog mushroom, pom pom mushroom, or yamabushitake – the mushroom is often used as a meat substitute, since many say that they taste like shrimp or lobster when properly cooked.

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