2007-11-23 / Community

Health & Harmony

By Dr. Nancy Gahles

DR. NANCY GAHLES DR. NANCY GAHLES Indiscretion, dietary or otherwise, may be prominent in your mind today as you experience the aftermath of the holiday. Indulgences of all kinds take place around the holiday table and right now, you may be asking yourself, "What WAS I thinking?"

Commonly, the day after Thanksgiving brings ailments associated with the gastro-intestinal system. Heartburn, gas, bloating, diarrhea, headaches and stomach pain are hallmarks of the "eat, drink and be merry" school of thought that teaches the "entitlement" theory of holiday indulging. Under normal circumstances, one day of a little too much of everything does not cause a problem. But, who lives under normal circumstances these days? We live a life of too much on a daily basis so, more often than not, the excesses of the holiday put us over the brink and we may feel the results of dietary indiscretion the next day.

Given that we are all unique individuals, the type of symptoms we experience is dependent on who we are and where our sensitivities lie. For example, the person who has a big appetite and loves to eat, who loves sweets (especially chocolate and ice cream), spicy foods, meat and alcohol (especially beer and whiskey), are the ones who may suffer from heartburn, gastritis and peptic ulcers. The burning pain is the characteristic to look for. This person may get relief from a homeopathic remedy called sulphur following a day of dietary indiscretion.

The person who suffers from cramping, sharp pains in the stomach after eating, and who gets gastritis and headaches after too much alcohol, is a candidate for a homeopathic remedy called Nux Vomica. These people are irritable and get worse after becoming angry. Nux Vomica is the number one remedy for hangovers.

Recently, Cindy Crawford was on the Oprah Winfrey show speaking about the top things that a celebrity cannot do without. She whipped out her homeopathic remedy kit for home use and a handbook that she uses to look up remedies for her family. She said words to this effect "I am the doctor in my family and I never leave home without this kit." Each and every condition should be evaluated by your personal physician, of course.

When simple first aid or acute issues like a bee sting or cuts and bruises arise, try your hand at homeopathy. Go to www. homeopathyworks.com to order a kit and a book on how to use remedies. One of my favorites is Easy Homeopathy by Edward Shalts, M.D., Vice President of the National Center for Homeopathy.

Thanking God that hindsight is 20/20, we can avert the side effects of indiscretion by thinking before we speak or take action. My dad used to say, "Discretion is the better part of valor." Before we say something to someone else or about someone else, think…Is it kind, is it truthful and is it necessary? Often, the statement does not fit all the criteria and is better left unsaid. In this way, resentment, anger and embarrassment can be avoided and will leave you feeling free from the "day after blues."

The same technique can be used to avoid overeating and imbibing too much. Before you leave for the dinner, visualize yourself taking a small portion of everything that you love. Do not deny yourself. Indulge! Have it all! In small portions. Pace yourself. Drink a glass of water or seltzer in between courses or cocktails.

Think before you reach for MORE. Indulge in positive conversations with the company you are in. Compliment someone. Really listen to someone, especially the elders and those with whom it is difficult to have a conversation. Seek out those who seem to be hanging back in the corner and give them a little attention. Even if it is for a few minutes. Caring goes a long way. If the Spirit moves you (and I pray that it will), forgive someone on this day and create space in your heart for more love to live there.

Adopt an attitude of gratitude. Being in a state of gratitude opens the way to a broader vision of possibilities. Possibilities breed hope. And hope feeds life.

To all of you, I extend my warm wishes for happiness and thanksgiving in your hearts. May The Blessings Be!

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