Let Not Your Heart Be Troubled Dr. Christopher's Newsletter 1-5 Page 1 Page 2 by Dr. John R. Christopher
We are placed on the earth with the finest piece of machinery, our own body, to be used as a vehicle for our spirit while we are in mortality. This equipment is completely computerized and if taken care of properly will last many, many more years than we normally expect it to in our modern society. Because of improper care and fueling of the human mechanism, our life span is far shorter, even by hundreds of years, than was common in Biblical times according to the ancient prophet and writer Isaiah. It is often difficult for the average individual to make his three score and ten let alone the hundred and ten years allotted mankind in Bible times after the Great Flood.
Each organ in our body must do its job as efficiently as it was originally meant to and designed for so that the other organs, will also work smoothly. If any part of the body should say to another part, "I have no need of you," does this mean we need to pluck it out? No. In order to have a wholesome (whole) body, each organ must run smoothly contributing to overall performance. The heart is an organ which is generally ignored or taken for granted until an emergency arrives. Being computerized, it just keeps on beating without our giving it any instructions and it will continue to work by itself until it is stopped by our neglect--or our inability to cope with its out-of-time or laboring problems.
"There is no evidence that stresses cause heart disease," wrote Kurt Aaron, M.D., in the November 14, 1959, issue of the Medical Journal of Australia (East Brisbane). However, he went on to demonstrate that stress of certain kinds can cause symptoms of heart disease in patients whose hearts are perfectly normal.
From time immemorial we have associated the heart with our emotions. Language is full of phrases like "heartfelt, lionhearted, broken-hearted." We know as well that the heart is closely associated with the emotions of fear and its natural accompanying physical preparedness. Physical response to danger requires increased blood supply to the muscles, dilation of the small arteries that lead to the muscles, the release of a glandular secretion, adrenalin and an increase in the output of the heart. In other words the heart must beat harder or faster or both.
Of course in earlier days danger meant for man the same thing it means to an animal, he either fought or ran. These body preparations took place to give him strength for fighting or swiftness for escape. It is true that the clotting time of the blood is shortened when one feels fear, anger or hostility. This means the blood tends to thicken thereby adapting to protect a person if he is wounded so that he will bleed less. Today most of us are removed from the actual danger of physical wounds. Nevertheless fear and anger will still produce a thickening of the blood. One easily sees, therefore, that chronic fear or anger may lead to dangerous blood clotting. It is also true, wrote Dr. Aaron, that recalling a past event that made one fearful or angry will produce the same physiological reaction as if the event were again taking place. An individual's heart beats faster, or harder, he feels the rush of blood into the muscles and the stimulation given by the adrenalin which moves swiftly to all parts of the body readying for an emergency. Undoubtedly people with very vivid imaginations experience almost the same sensations of fright as they tell of or re-live a fearful event.
However, in Dr. Aaron's opinion, the normal individual who approaches a doctor with complaints of heart pain symptoms is suffering from something else. They have a neurosis. This does not mean that their difficulty is imaginary. It's real enough all right, but it is the result of something in their personalities, not in the physiology of their heart. Some of the symptoms in this type of ailment are heart palpitations, difficulty in breathing, pain in the chest area and fatigue. Any one of these symptoms alone or in conjunction with other symptoms such as frequent urination, indigestion or headache often constitute the major complaints of a patient who has nothing wrong with his heart.
Dr. Aaron goes on to describe these symptoms in more detail. His description of what is commonly called heart palpitation is particularly insightful. Heart palpitation, he explains, is the "consciousness of the heart beating." It is usually a painless, albeit disturbing, phenomena and may be felt in the chest or over the heart. The heart often seems to be pounding very hard and to the individual it may seem as if the sensation is at some distance from where he believes his heart is actually located. Heart beats may occur out of step with the preceding or subsequent beats, or the heart may beat very rapidly. Palpitations are often not felt in the moment of real stress or crisis but the patient usually feels the palpitations while lying down recalling the difficult situation. Breathlessness or labored breathing is another of the symptoms of an ailing heart which may be misread: The patient calls it shortness of breath and means two varieties. The first is an increase in respiratory rate and the second is the feeling of inability to take a deep breath, as if he could not get enough air in the lungs. Yet this particular type of breathing is associated with deep sighing respiration. It is a feeling of oppression as if something was stopping the thoracic (chest) cage from expanding. I find it a particularly useful symptom in favor of diagnosis of neurosis; of which it is characteristic. It occurs at any time, has no relation to effort, and is particularly prone to happen in association with recall of fearful and unpleasant situations. It often occurs at night, waking the patient in a panic.
Another symptom, chest pain, may cause problems in diagnoses for both patient and doctor because of its similarity to the pain of angina pectoris. This kind of pain, according to Dr. Aaron, does not occur as a result of exertion on the patient's part, even though it may be necessary for the patient to rest for several hours. One patient explained to Dr. Aaron that he, the patient, would have to go to bed for the rest of the day simply to get relief from the pain which he assumed was caused by the visit to the doctor in the morning. It is hard to describe this type of pain. For example, patients may have read accounts of the sensations experienced by angina patients and then confuse their own sort of pain with that which they have read about.
Of course then the real question is what causes these symptoms of heart illness which we have described above? Recalling a situation that frightened or angered us stimulates the same physical responses throughout our body as if we were again frightened or angered.
Dr. Aaron states: I have no doubt that most, if not all, patients suffering from anxiety states have gone through prolonged periods of fear without relief in action. An insecure childhood is the most common factor, particularly mother-deprivation, a violent alcoholic father or over-strictness of well-meaning parents. These histories are almost always found in the history of these unfortunate persons. My conception of the etiology (cause) of these disabilities is, the conditioning of prolonged anxiety and insecurity as a rule in childhood up to the age of 18 years, resulting in unduly violent emotional reactions to later stresses. These may be everyday stresses of life, recall of difficult life situations, dreams or new severe emotional upsets. The reaction remains the same--stimulation of the automatic nervous system. If the fear of heart disease is superimposed on this, the threat to life is added and a vicious circle is established. It is also possible for people with organic heart disease to have heart symptoms that arise from anxiety neurosis. In such cases the doctor must first treat the organic heart trouble, then if the symptoms persist after the actual working of the heart has been corrected, the patient must work to correct the emotional background that is causing them.
(This is an excerpt from The Encyclopedia of Common Diseases, by the staff of a prevention magazine, Rodale Press, Inc.) Malfunctioning of the heart due to an organically caused condition is a problem that should be corrected by attacking the very root of the problem. Here is a fine explanation of the cause of breakdowns in the circulatory system by Julius Gilbert White (Abundant Health, published by the Health and Character Education Institute, Pine Mountain Valley, Georgia). The human body is the most marvelous thing in the world. It consists of myriads of cells which are assembled into tissue, muscle, nerves, glands, organs, bones, teeth, skin and hair. Every cell has to be fed with oxygen, water and food. These supplies must be of the right kinds, in balance and unfailing. If there be a failure, the cells must suffer and then the organs suffer. As each cell carries on its work, the foods are used, and their use produces by-products which must be carried away from the cells without delay or they will suffer or die from their wastes, which are poison. Each cell is continually wearing out and being rebuilt. These cell wastes are toxic and must be carried away as well as the by-products. TWO SYSTEMS
To supply all of these necessities there are two systems in the body. One system takes in oxygen, water and food, and delivers them to the cells. The other begins at the cells and takes their wastes and by-products by the lymph and blood to the elimination outlets-lungs, pores and kidneys. If these toxic wastes are not efficiently removed, the cells suffer and then the organs must suffer. As the blood passes through the liver, one of its functions is to convert certain toxic elements into the bile for elimination through the colon.
A very fine balance has to be maintained between the operation of these two systems. They both are operated by the heart which is the principal means of causing lymph and the blood to circulate, carrying the supplies in and the wastes out.
This circulatory system which keeps the body clean within, is very efficient. It is said that if the cells were bathed in two hundred thousand quarts of water, the water would have to be changed every few days to avoid the cells from being poisoned by their own wastes; but the blood does this work with about seven quarts of fluid in conjunction with coordinated facilities.
Suppose an automobile could earn and secure its own supplies, feed itself with gas, oil, water, and oxygen, and drive itself; and suppose the supplies it gives to itself would replace all of the losses so that no part would wear out in less than one hundred years; and if a fender were broken or a tire injured, these supplies would mend the injuries; and that it would gradually renew its coat of paint as it goes over the highways so it will always look new--what a wonder it would be! That is a crude illustration of the human body.
Degenerative diseases are caused by putting in the wrong "fuel" and failure to keep the cells and blood stream of the body clean. THERE IS NO ARGUMENT
In order to go deeper into our subject we must understand the effects of poisons on cells and consequently on the organs. There is no argument over the fact that cells must be nourished. Likewise, there is no argument over the fact that poisons injure them. Let us see what happens. THE KIDNEYS
These magic filters handle nearly a quart of blood every minute, and in seven minutes handle an amount equal to all of that in the body; at least 600 quarts of blood pass through the normal kidneys every twenty-four hours for certain wastes to be removed; all the blood of the body passes through the kidneys many times each day.
The wastes are removed by the action of the selective cells in the circular-shaped glomeruli in the tubules which together constitute one unit of filter mechanism of which there are said to be two million in each kidney (some say four million), each composed of cells, many of which have the power of selection akin to intelligence. The glomeruli drain into the tubules, which are so small each one can handle a fourth of an ounce in sixty years. The glomeruli extract about sixty quarts of fluid from the blood in twenty-four hours, and pour it into the tubules, which put back into the blood, all except about two quarts, which are eliminated as urine, and in which are the wastes that have been extracted. The kidneys thus use one quart of water to extract forty-five grams of waste. If there is a deficiency of water in the body, the urine is too concentrated and the kidneys are handicapped in the elimination of wastes.
The kidney mechanism and functions bear witness to an infinite Mind which designed their structures, and an infinite Being who continues to maintain their exigency and Who supervises their functions. To suggest that such an organ could originate of itself without a Designer and Creator is so foolish that no scientist or schoolboy would even consider applying the same argument to an automobile. Why not be consistent?