For Optimal Health and Well-being

With our health care systems in overwhelm, many of us have been left to our own resources to cope with underlying conditions that could put our lives at risk.

This is an ideal opportunity to optimise our body’s healing potential to create the best possible outcome. Now and for the next chapter of our lives.

Photo of sea birds flying over the beach by Frank McKenna on Unsplash

I am sharing the daily routine that I have developed over the years which has not only kept me in remission from cancer but has also created optimal health and well-being. It will cleanse and revitalise your body and mind as well as keeping your immune system strong and in balance. I have included a few suggestions that may also help protect you specifically against COVID-19.

Stress keeps mind, body and immune system in the fight or flight response. In the flight response we and our immune systems can become depressed and under-active. “I give up, no point, I feel powerless, it is hopeless, nothing I can do, I am going to pretend it’s not happening.” Or in the fight response immune cells can become overactive. “I am not safe, I need to alert the whole army, I need to attack everything in sight.” They not only attack the invader but also our healthy cells. This is often what is happening in COVID-19 when our immune systems are out of balance.

When we calm ourselves down, we become restfully alert and capable of taking responsibility for ourselves and the situation without being in a state of panic or overwhelm.

Practicing Silence

Here is a simple Meditation and breathing technique to help balance the immune response, cleanse the airways and expand the capacity of the lungs while calming the mind. Great if you can practice this outside or in a room with windows open. Covid viruses die very quickly in fresh air and natural light.

Sit in a comfortable position with your back straight, hands resting on your lap, palms open and eyes closed. Take long slow deep breaths through your nose, expanding abdomen and lungs as you breath in, and emptying your lungs and contracting your abdomen as you breathe out. Expanding as you breath in, contracting as you breathe out. Long slow deep breaths. Now breathe in and hold your breath at the top of your inhale, for 4 counts, exhale and hold your breath at the end of your exhale for 4 counts. Inhale, hold, exhale hold. Use Long, slow, deep breaths and repeat a few times.. Now breathe naturally, following your breath without strain or force and merge into the subtle vibrations of fresh new life force filling every cell.

Relax all the muscles in your face, unclench your jaw, feel all the anxiety and worry melt from your brow, shoulders, neck and back completely relaxed, all the tensions melting away. Relax any holding anywhere. Follow your breath or repeat “So ..Hum” in your mind and allow yourself to slip into the deep stillness and silence within. Rest in being. (20 minutes is ideal). Repeat the following affirmations to yourself like dropping pebbles into a vast still pond, ripples spreading outwards.

Joyful energetic body.
Alert reflective mind.
Compassionate loving heart.
Lightness of being.
Rest in stillness and when you are ready gently open your eyes.

The ideal is to create a meditation habit like cleaning your teeth in the morning. Rise, pee meditate. 20 – 30 mins first thing. . After a while it becomes a joy rather than an effort and the benefits are far reaching. If you can’t manage 20 minutes then try 3, or 5, or 1 minute expanding each day. If you feel overwhelmed during the day take a few deep breaths, concentrating on the breath until you feel centred. Late afternoon is a great time to meditate for a second time or you can practice my creative healing visualisation below. This may turn into a nap, which is fine, as all body systems restore and balance during sleep.

Creative Healing – Penny Burns 2020

This video can also be viewed on YouTube

Another easy way to practice calmness is to do something you love to do where you are so focused that you lose track of time. Could be off loading your emotions into a journal that won’t answer back or talking to the cat, painting a wall or your next masterpiece, standing on your head, dancing around the room, or losing yourself in a beautiful piece of music.

Connecting with nature will fill you with awe at the infinite intelligence in all things. If you don’t have a garden or can’t go for your normal run or walk, visualise beautiful, natural scenes while feeling them through all five senses. The body will still flood your system with feel good chemicals.

Detoxifying and nourishing drinks

During challenging times it helps to hydrate and cleanse the system with regular drinks of warm to hot, previously boiled water. You can make a thermos of fresh ginger and lemon juice, sweetened with a small amount of honey or natural stevia to sip throughout the day or have regular cups of green tea. All have a detoxifying effect on the system.

Ideally first thing in the morning and last thing at night drinking a quarter of a glass of Aloe vera juice added to two parts water will help to heal and sooth your digestive tract.

Once a day, I make an apple and carrot juice using equal parts apple and carrot, I inch of fresh curcumin (turmeric), I inch piece fresh ginger, half a lemon and half an orange.

This is effervescing with a variety of potent antioxidants and phytochemicals to detoxify, nourish and protect your system.
I also make a green juice 3 times a week. You can use any dark green leafy vegetables, a few red cabbage leaves, 1 green pepper, an apple and half a lemon. It may not taste nice, understatement for some, but is incredibly healing and soothing to the system and is also packed full of powerful healing elements. After making 8 juices day for 7 years while on the Gerson therapy, I worship them as a magical elixir, and one juice a day feels like a holiday. This attitude really seems to work. Some people think the green juice tastes disgusting but as I drink it I imagine it cleansing and healing every cell and so I have conditioned my mind to think it tastes delicious.

Photo of fresh fruit juices by Tai's Captures on Unsplash

Diet

During challenging times our digestive systems tend to become very sensitive. The heart, brain and gut have the same neurotransmitters and are continually eavesdropping on our thoughts and emotions. Often if you can allow yourself to be still, take deep breaths, focus on the feeling in your gut rather than the conversation in your mind you will notice that the wave of emotion will move through you and slowly start to dissipate. Your digestive system will immediately pick up this message.

It is best during these times to eat lightly cooked meals at regular intervals. Mainly fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains and pulses are ideal and packed full of nutritious and detoxifying substances. Eating the rainbow, having a variety of colours on your plate ensures you have a good variety of essential vitamins and minerals. It is healthier at these times to avoid high protein foods such as meat and dairy as these are more difficult to digest and tend to encourage inflammation. Avoid animal fats as a lot of toxicity is stored in fatty tissue, and also anything that comes in a packet or a tin, especially processed foods and refined sugars. A small amount of olive oil is ideal for cooking. You can season a salad with olive oil or 2tbs flax seed oil, lemon juice, turmeric and black pepper. Be careful not to heat flax seed oil. If you are used to salt you can substitute with a small amount of potassium salt.

If fresh vegetables are in short supply, then frozen fruits and vegetables are the next best choice. Make sure to use them within 3 months, and within two days once defrosted. As a quick snack you could eat unsalted nuts and seeds, unsalted rice cakes or vegetables with humus or avocado, topped with tomatoes. Maybe Fresh fruits, especially berries with organic probiotic live bacteria yoghurt, sprinkled with unsweetened cereal, or a piece of dark chocolate or a chocolate rice cake when you feel an energy slump. If you like cooking you can experiment with healthy biscuit recipes using dried oats, rice and dried fruit sweetened with stevia or small amount of honey.

Supplements

The following supplements have all been proven to support the immune system, reduce inflammation, detoxify system and have an anti-viral effect.

Vitamin C 1000-2000 mg a day. Vitamin D3 1000-2000 iu a day. Zinc 20 mgs a day. 1-2 capsules of a general vitamin and mineral supplement per day. Echinacea powder form 300-500 mg a day or Echinacea Liquid extract 2.5 ml 3 x a day.

Herbs

Ayurvedic herbs such as Ashwagandha and Amalaka have many healing as well as antiviral qualities. There are also many potent Chinese herbs but generally it is best not to mix them as they can sometimes interfere with each other.

Oregano, Sage and Basil also have antiviral qualities. Fresh herbs are ideal although dried are still effective.

Exercise

A balanced exercise routine will improve Cardiorespiratory endurance, muscular strength and flexibility. Not only will it cleanse and revitalise the whole system but will relieve depression, anxiety and stress, boost immune function, improve sleep and slow down the ageing process.

With all these benefits it is quite easy to motivate ourselves. I do a 30-40 minute step routine or an hours brisk walk, followed by 15-20 minutes weight training using ankle and leg weights and finally 20 -30 minutes of yoga stretching with meditation 3-4 times a week.

If this seems a bit daunting, hold a vision of yourself as vibrantly healthy and slowly increase your physical activity a little each day. You could dance to music you loved as a teenager, this will trick your mind and body into feeling younger. You could practice the tango with the vacuum cleaner or walk briskly around your work space in between home improvements or escape for a quick walk around the block with the dog. Another possibility is to practice sun salutations or simple stretches in between work assignments or even tense and relax all your muscles while sitting in your chair.

A yoga routine will improve your posture, muscular strength and endurance as well your ability to be focused and present in the now.

Bellows Breath Breathing Technique

If you have an energy slump during the day you can practice the Bellows breath. breathe in through your nose, while expanding your abdomen, then exhale forcefully through your nose while contracting the abdomen. Keep your head, neck, shoulders and chest still while your abdomen moves in and out. Practice a few rounds, if you feel dizzy, breathe normally and build up the repetitions slowly. This will re energise and oxygenate your system. You can even think “I” on the inhale and “ Am” on the exhale to you remind yourself of your powerful spiritual essence. This has the added advantage of tightening those abs at the same time.

Bathroom Routine

Twice a day, or after going out, especially now and if mucus is building and you have sinus congestion. it is a good idea to clean out your sinuses. You can use a neti pot designed for this purpose or even a clean spoon. Use half a cup of previously boiled warm water, add one tsp sea salt and mix until dissolved. Tilt your head to one side and pour a small amount of the saline solution into your top nostril and let it flow out through the opposite nostril. Repeat on the other side. You can also breath in the salt water gently and exhale out. This can help to flush out and prevent infection from building in your breathing passages. After flushing out your sinuses you can lightly moisturise your nasal passages with a stroke of coconut oil using a cotton bud. If you can feel a sore throat developing, then you can gargle with the saline solution or an antiseptic mouth wash to help prevent an infection from developing.

Steam inhalation using essential oils can also help to ease congestion, clear breathing passages and relieve headaches. Fill a bowl with hot water and add 5 drops of eucalyptus oil, 5 drops of tea tree oil, and 5 drops lavender essential oil. Put your head over the bowl, cover it with a towel and breathe deeply for 10 minutes. Alternatively, you can add these essential oils to 1 oz of coconut oil, sweet almond oil or olive oil and add them to your bath water along with I cup of Epsom salts. Luxuriate in the bath while inhaling the steam. This will also cause you to perspire which cleanses the body of toxins through the skin.

Regular use of eye drops will help to cleanse and moisturise your eyes.

Restful Sleep

Many of us right now are anxious and worried and as soon as we put our head on the pillow our thoughts run wild on all the possible negative outcomes. It helps to remember that worrying is praying for what we don’t want and it is a habit that does not serve us. Following the daily practices mentioned will balance the body and calm the mind but here are a few extra suggestions that may help you to get a restful nights sleep.

Create a regular daily routine by getting up in the morning and going to bed at the same time every day and eat a lighter meal in the evening. Stop any major mental or physical activity at least two hours before bedtime and don’t take your work, mobile phone, computer or a (button pusher partner) to bed with you. You could try a recording of, “You are such a wonderful human being, I feel so grateful to be in your presence, sleep well my precious.”

Make your bedroom as dark and silent as possible. You can use a few drops of lavender essence on your pillow, drink a cup of herbal sleep tea and read a calming and comforting book.

Use these techniques to nourish your mind, body and soul

| Best Wishes from Penny |