Updated: Jan 15, 2019
Stress certainly takes a physiological toll. In fact, the National Institutes of Health reports that “emotional stress is a major contributing factor to the six leading causes of death in the United States: cancer, coronary heart disease, accidental injuries, respiratory disorders, cirrhosis of the liver and suicide.”1 In addition, the National Council on compensation of insurance reports “up to 90% of all visits to primary care physicians are for stress-related complaints.”1 Are you doing enough to heal effects of stress or are you simply coping?
Consider adding Reiki to your self-care practices. It is a Japanese stress-reducing technique based on the energy anatomy of the body (similar to acupuncture) and is non-invasive, painless, cannot do harm and is a complement to traditional medical care—not an alternative or replacement.
How does Reiki Help with Stress?
The stress you face everyday coupled with deeper emotional hurts and traumas you may carry actually effects the way your life force energy (also referred to as chi or ki) flows in and around your body. When this flow isn’t adjusted and maintained in a balanced way, symptoms arise. These symptoms may be on emotional, mental or physical levels and can manifest to include anything from inability to focus, irritability, anxiety, depression, and physical pain and disease.
A Reiki practitioner places her hands lightly on or just off your fully-clothed body to balance the life force energy that all living things possess. Clients usually feel extremely relaxed and may fall asleep. When this energy begins flowing the way it is designed to, you may begin to feel more positive, connected to life, grounded, balanced and more able to focus. These benefits often last long after the session.
Evidence for Reiki
Reiki is shown to impact how the nervous system operates.2 It shifts the nervous system out of the fight or flight mode of operation that triggers cortisol release and damaging physiological changes. Then the parasympathetic nervous system takes over. It is in this state that your body enters into the rest and restore mode that allows your cells to recover and repair themselves as the body is naturally designed to do. Your immune system can then better support you in maintaining health and feeling better in general.
The sources of stress can seem endless. Fortunately, you can choose strategies to help you heal the damage done and prevent further imbalances from stress. Reiki may support you in feeling better and when you feel better, everything feels better.
Article written for and published in the Natural Awakenings Magazine-January 2018 issue.
1 Mohd R.S. Life event, stress and illness. Malays. J. Med. Sci. 2008;15:9–18. Link: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3341916/
2 Mackay N., Hansen S., McFarlane O. Autonomic nervous system changes during Reiki treatment: a preliminary study. Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine. 2004;10(6):1077–1081. doi: 10.1089/acm.2004.10.1077. Link: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15674004