Our instructor in virology said that if one were to put a hundred people in an enclosed room, and spray it with viruses, only a certain percentage would contract and develop an infection. Besides being immune because of previous exposure to the pathogen or previous vaccination, he said there was an ‘unknown factor’ that prevented many from developing the disease. Certainly overall health and vitality were factors, reflecting an ability to quickly stop an infection in its tracks, but other than these considerations little was known as to why some escaped infection.
Most students of the Cayce health readings come to understand the basic recommendations on how to enjoy health and well being — and maintain a strong immune/defensive system: a diet that is very high in fresh fruits and vegetables (80%), light meats such as fish, fowl and lamb, whole grains and nuts and seeds, lots of fresh, pure water every day, and perhaps some supplementation with vitamins and minerals. Certain combinations of food and ‘bolting’ ones food were to be avoided. Along with these, Cayce recommended one try to maintain a healthy spiritual and mental life with regular, if not daily prayer and meditation – time spent in direct communion with one’s Source. Regular spiritual reading to help remind ourselves of being eternal children of the One Sacred Spirit was also recommended. Also, the importance of physical exercise, outside in God’s green earth when possible, was recommended as a way to handle the stressors of life, and to promote lymphatic and blood circulation within the body to aid the processes of ‘elimination’ of metabolic wastes. Non-movement (stasis) was seen as producing ‘drosses’ within the body which were detrimental to the immune system. Along this same line, the readings suggest that constipation was a factor in vulnerability to cold and flu and recommended a senna type laxative when needed. Also basic to well being was the ability to forgive and forget past injuries. Thus, one could hopefully develop an equanimity – a calm composure and evenness of temper – serenity – in even the most trying of circumstances.
As to other ways to help avoid infections, of all kinds, the readings repeatedly stressed the importance of maintaining an alkalized internal atmosphere. The human body’s internal pH is a tightly controlled physiological process that ranges from slightly acid to slightly alkaline. As regards the common cold (a coronavirus), the readings specifically state that an internal state of alkalinity does not allow the growth and reproduction of these type organisms. In fact, reading 1947-4 states: “Keep the body alkaline! Cold germs do not live in an alkaline system!” Testing the saliva and urine with blue litmus paper was recommended for those who wish to determine their internal pH. One’s diet was seen as the primary determinant of internal pH, and the readings essentially recommended what is now termed a ‘Mediterranean’ diet. The readings also suggested taking a teaspoon of baking soda dissolved in a glass of water once or twice weekly during the cold and flu season to further help bump the pH toward the alkaline side. One can also gargle with Glycothymoline and swallow a bit occasionally for an antiseptic effect in the gut. Reading 413-4 states: “…there is (no better) way for keeping the eliminations throughout the body, tending toward alkalinity in the alimentary canal – where most disorders arise.” Modern science is just now recognizing the truth of this last statement with extensive research into the ‘abdominal brain’ and the trillions of healthy (and necessary) microbes that inhabit the gut.
Once infected, the readings recommended first and foremost rest, the importance of which cannot be over stated. As most realize, the body requires rest in order to heal itself. Additionally, Mr. (257) was given the advice to first take a senna based laxative and increase water and fruit juice intake. In the acute phase one should eat little, mostly fresh citrus fruit, so as to not tax the system with digestion. Heavy meats were to be avoided. While resting and sleeping one could use a mixture of camphor and turpentine suspended in mutton tallow (Baar, ‘Camphor Care’) rubbed over the neck, chest wall, lower legs and feet, front, side and back, and put on a night shirt and long socks – to stimulate lymphatic flow while lying down, helping to more quickly distribute ‘home grown’ antibodies that fight off the infection. A menthol rub would also be effective. For my patients I recommend a daily 20 minute soak in a hot tub bath while doing the following exercises: lying on your back, draw the knees up to the chest and squeeze the body for about 15 seconds or so, then sit up and do about a dozen slow, backward, full circle windmills of the arms and shoulders. Repeat this exercise about a dozen times. This pumps the low pressure lymphatic fluid at a much higher rate, helping to further mobilize the body’s immune response. This exercise can also be done on the bed.
Early Osteopaths utilized an “Osteopathic lymphatic pump maneuver” during the Spanish Flu Pandemic of 1918 to aid the recovery of their patients and had excellent outcomes using the procedure. There are numerous lymph mobilizing techniques available on line for viewing.
To help speed up the production of germ-specific antibodies to fight an infection, the readings recommended procuring ‘beef juice’ (see: Cayce beef juice). This was obtained by parboiling small cubes of lean beef steak for an hour or so, harvesting the juices obtained, and then sipping a small amount from a spoon very slowly, letting the juice lie in the mouth for 15 seconds or so. This allows the biologically potent long chain proteins to be delivered directly into the blood stream under the tongue, providing vital building blocks for quick antibody production in the lymph nodes. One can see the genius of this recommendation – to quickly strengthen the body’s inherent defensive system – an absolute must when fighting a viral infection. If parboiling steak cubes is too much of a task, substituting store-bought beef broth would be a second choice.
In the clinic for sinus congestion and stuffy nose we dilute Glycothymoline with distilled water, half and half, and put this in a dropper bottle to give to patients. This mixture of oils was originally marketed as a “Treatment for Mucosity” and works well to cut through mucus, dry up the sinuses, and help heal the epithelial lining of the nasopharynx. For a ‘wet lung’ that exhibits congestion, or bronchitis with coughing, I frequently recommend a vapor inhalant from Baar: Inspirol. When inhaling these bronchial dilating fumes, it is necessary to take only a small amount at first, then gradually build the volume inhaled as the bronchi tubes become desensitized.
Finally, spinal biomechanical lesions causing disruptions in the Autonomic Nervous System, which controls all aspects of human physiology, can be a factor in susceptibility to infection and the ability to recover from infections. These biomechanical lesions commonly have their origin in old injuries, postural syndromes, poor sitting and sleeping postures, aging, weak muscle tone, etc.. These functional impairments about the spine were recognized as producing an internal “unbalancing.” Thus, finding a competent Chiropractic or Osteopathic physician for manual therapy was often recommended in the readings.
The virulence (strength) of a microbe and the vulnerability of the host are the two factors that determine the numbers infected in a pandemic and the outcome of the infections. We can’t do much about the virulence of a virus, but we surely can do a lot to reduce our vulnerability to infection, or if we do become infected, to more quickly overcome the invasion.
Dr. John Bomar, a 1978 graduate of Palmer College of Chiropractic, practices in Arkadelphia, Ark. He is a past board member of the Arkansas Chiropractic Association and a founding board member of the Arkansas Chiropractic Educational Society.