RETRACING AND HEALING REACTIONS
by Dr. Lawrence Wilson
© August 2017, L.D. Wilson Consultants, Inc.
All information in this article is for educational purposes only. It is not for the diagnosis, treatment, prescription or cure of any disease or health condition.
To read a very personal story of retracing, click here.
Table of Contents
Definition Of Healing Reactions
Definition Of Retracing
Other Words For Healing Reactions
Types Of Reactions
Warning: Healing reactions are occasionally vigorous and once in a great while, they are dangerous. Most of the time, they are benign and do not require medical intervention. However, please always use common sense during healing reactions. PLEASE STAY IN TOUCH WITH YOUR NUTRITIONAL BALANCING PRACTITIONER DURING HEALING REACTIONS.
Healing reactions. These are temporary symptoms that occur as the body heals at deep levels. The symptoms may be physical, emotional, mental or even spiritual or religious in nature. We define a spiritual healing reaction as one in which a person is forced to re-examine his or her beliefs about life or other deep issues. The result is usually a more integrated and healthier personality.
Healing reactions occasionally occur with conventional medical care, and may be called Jarisch-Herxheimer reactions or just Herxheimer reactions. These are discussed later in this article.
Healing reactions are welcome signs of healing. In fact, if they fail to occur, one knows that a healing method offers symptomatic relief, but the correction of disease is not at the deepest levels.
Most healing reactions are mild and brief. One may not even notice them. At times, however, they are annoying and unpleasant. Very rarely, they are dangerous.
Other words. Other words for healing reactions used in the medical literature are: flare-ups, healing crises, Herxheimer reactions, aggravations, purification reactions, retracing reactions, catharsis, and exacerbations. These all mean the same thing and may be used interchangeably in this article.
Retracing. Retracing is an unusual process by which the body thoroughly heals an illness or trauma that was incompletely healed in the past. It usually requires:
- excellent nutrition
- an increase in the vitality of the body
- a more yang condition of the body
- perhaps other favorable conditions such as adequate rest.
Poorly understood. Retracing is not well known or well understood because it rarely occurs with conventional medical methods or with most holistic or natural healing methods.
II. BASIC INFORMATION ABOUT HEALING REACTIONS AND RETRACING
They only occur with certain deep healing methods. Retracing and healing reactions usually do not occur with standard medical or most holistic healing methods. They occur very commonly during nutritional balancing programs.
All symptoms during a nutritional balancing program are healing reactions, providing a person follows the program correctly. This is a rather extreme statement, but it is our experience.
Chronic to acute. During retracing, illnesses and other traumas move from a chronic state to an acute state before they are eliminated completely. Chronic means that a health condition does not kill the person, but the person also cannot overcome the condition. It is a stalemate.
As the energy level in the body improves, chronic conditions turn acute because the body now actively fights to overcome a poorly healed infection or something else.
A return to the past. Part of retracing is often a return to a time in the past when the original trauma or illness began or occurred. This can feel unusual, because one may feel partly like an adult, yet at the same time one may experience feelings like that of a child, for example, if the original illness or trauma took place in childhood.
Everyone has unhealed or only partially healed conditions. There are no exceptions, even if you have no symptoms.
Very precise. Often, the symptoms of retracing are exactly the same as symptoms that occurred with the original condition or trauma.
Occurs in its own order. Retracing does not occur in a particular sequence, such as moving backwards chronologically. Instead, the body decides the order in which illnesses or conditions will retrace. This may have to do with one’s nutrition and other factors.
Occurs in its own timing. Retracing does not occur on a set schedule. It can occur during a nutritional balancing program at any time. Often, retracing occurs when one is feeling well because this usually means that one’s energy level is higher, and more adaptive energy is needed for retracing.
Can be scary. As a rule, retracing is a very benign process. The body will not begin it unless it can complete it safely. However, it often arises suddenly, and it can be vigorous, at times. Also, one’s friends, family members and doctors do not understand it, so they tend to scare you more.
To repeat, all reactions during nutritional balancing programs are healing reactions or retracing, in our experience, provided you are following the program correctly.
However, please contact your practitioner if you have symptoms, because they can also be due to other causes, such as a need for an updated program or some error in the way you are following the program.
CAUSES AND TYPES OF HEALING REACTIONS
A. REMOVAL REACTIONS (6 of them):
1. Removal of an infection. Most adults have at least two dozen chronic infections.
Common locations are the sinuses, ears, eyes, teeth, gums, throat, skin, bronchials, lungs, stomach, intestines, liver, and colon. Even young children and babies have a number of infections. They may be present at birth, or may occur shortly after birth.
Retracing and thoroughly healing them involves several steps:
1. The situation changes from being chronic to acute. Chronic infections are those the body cannot fight off. Instead, the infection remains controlled, and may cause few or no symptoms.
When an old infection becomes acute, it means the body is now able to actively fight the infection. This often causes a flare-up of symptoms such as pain, inflammation, or swelling.
2. The body then completely eliminates the infection from the body. This may occur quickly, within hours, or it may take days, weeks or months.
Some infections will flare up, then symptoms will go away for a while. However, the process may repeat itself with another flare up for a while. This may occur a number of times until the entire infection is healed. The author experienced this with ear infections, for example.
Types of organisms involved. Retracing of infections can involve bacteria, viri, fungi, and/or parasites. At times, they involve a combination of micro-organims. Here are some notes about each.
Bacteria. Antibiotic therapy kills most bacteria, but it does not heal the body tissues. As a result, some infections remain and fester in a chronic way. Some antibiotic residues also remain in the body for years, altering the normal intestinal flora and causing many other problems.
For these reasons, please take antibiotics only as a last resort. Natural products are usually effective. For more, please read Beyond Antibiotics on this site.
Viruses. Many chronic infections are viral. As the body’s vitality improves, they retrace and disappear. They can include herpes and other sexually-transmitted diseases.
Parasites. There are over 300 species of parasites, and infection is very common everywhere in the world. Liver flukes, for example, are especially widespread. However, they are often not easy to detect, even with stool exams and other methods.
Many of our clients report seeing dead parasites in the toilet during a nutritional balancing program.
No drugs, herbs or other anti-parasitic remedies are needed to remove parasites with a nutritional balancing program. The program alone will slowly kill all types of parasites. All of the parasite remedies are mildly or quite toxic, so it is best to avoid them all. For details, read Parasites.
Fungal infections. These are usually “cold” or yin infections, and are also extremely common. Most women have too much yeast in the body, and sinus infections are often fungal. Many are due to a copper imbalance. A nutritional balancing program will heal them, and remedies are rarely required. For details, read Chronic Yeast Infections.
2. Removal of a toxic metal. Today, everyone has lots of toxic metals in their body. Children are born with them, and they are in the air, water, food and items we touch every day.
Three dozen toxic metals will come out of the body using a nutritional balancing program. They will come out in the body’s own order and its own timing.
Toxic metals are usually in compounds or molecules. Some of these are more difficult for the body to eliminate than others. One metal may come out for a few months. Then, another one may come out. Then the previous metal may come out again for another few months, perhaps in a different compound. So the process of removing them is lengthy and complex.
Repeated hair testing sometimes reveals the process, but there are metals that are not tested, and the metals are removed by many routes – the colon, the skin, the liver, and the lungs. Fortunately, we don’t need to know which are coming out to adjust the nutritional balancing program. For details, read Toxic Metals.
3. Removal of a toxic chemical. Many people have been exposed to solvents, pesticides, paints, and other toxic chemicals. Some are aware of the exposure, but most people have little memory of the incident.
Symptoms that occur as the chemicals are eliminated may include strange odors, odd tastes, rashes, liver or kidney pain, diarrhea, constipation, or other symptoms.
These chemicals are acquired in utero, or afterwards from food, water, air or from contact with many household and industrial products. For details, read Toxic Chemicals.
4. Removal of bad quality tissue. A common one is intestinal lining. Clients occasionally think that a piece of twisted intestinal lining in the toilet is a parasite.
Removal of toxic tissue occasionally causes weight loss that worries our clients. I assure them that it is best to get rid of the toxic weight, and they will gain weight back when the elimination is over.
5. Removal of mental or emotional “toxins” and traumas. Most people have experienced traumas of a mental or emotional type. These may be brought to consciousness for processing and removal. It is an amazing aspect of a nutritional balancing program.
The ability to remove mental and emotional blocks is due to better mental clarity, and improvements in memory and vitality. Also, the removal of toxic metals can sometimes free one of long-held emotions such as anger or fear.
Some of our clients are quite upset when they suddenly begin thinking or dreaming about their long-forgotten divorce, death of a child years ago, or some other issue. However, deep healing of the body and mind requires that such traumas be exposed, processed and removed.
6. Removal of spiritual blocks. This is important enough that it is discussed in a separate section of this article.
B. METABOLIC SHIFTS
1. A change in the oxidation rate or oxidation type. This is very common. Slowing of the oxidation rate may cause one to feel more tired or depressed. If the oxidation rate increases, one may feel more energetic or perhaps just more irritable.
If the oxidation type changes, then the nutritional balancing program must be adjusted, or one will feel that the program is making one worse – and it is. If you suspect this, please ask your nutritional balancing consultant to ask me about it.
Rarely, the oxidation rate and type fluctuate up and down, over and over again, confusing things. Fortunately, this is not common.
2. A shift in the sodium/potassium ratio. This is important because it, too, necessitates a change in the nutritional balancing supplement program. Zinc is needed if the ratio is above 2.5, while Limcomin is needed if the ratio drops below 2.5. Keeping this ratio near its ideal level of 2.5 is very important to feel well and to keep any healing reaction going through to completion.
3. A shift into or out of other mineral patterns. This occurs continuously during the retracing process. They are necessary, at times, to remove toxic metals, to heal infections, and to process mental and emotional traumas.
4. Other biochemical shifts. Many are possible, such as changes in gland and hormone secretion, changes in the intestinal flora, more bile secretion, or a change in body temperature, bowel habits, blood sugar or blood pressure. These are all normal and to be expected.
Abnormal blood readings. A problem our clients have is that these changes often upset routine blood tests. They easily cause abnormal thyroid, liver and other test readings.
These reading worry the doctor and the client, and can lead to taking medications, when this is rarely indicated. I explain to the client that the abnormal readings are part of the rebalancing process of nutritional balancing, and will pass.
If the client will just wait a month and redo the blood test, often it will be normal. Rarely, the rebalancing takes up to 6 months, but it is still not a problem.
Doctors deal with “the sick and the dying”, and interpret blood tests accordingly. A person on a nutritional balancing program is not in this population group! Their blood tests must be interpreted differently, in a way with which doctors, even naturopaths, are not familiar. This important topic is the subject of a separate article, Blood Tests And Nutritional Balancing.
5. A structural shift. This is caused by a change in muscle tension, changes in the ligaments and tendons, adjustment of the spine or other bones, more nerve energy flowing to certain areas, or some other mechanism.
Spinal release. A number of people who follow a nutritional balancing program experience a spinal release healing reaction. This is a more extensive change in the bone structure.
It often begins in the lumbar and sacral areas, and slowly moves up the spine to the thoracic and cervical areas. It may be caused by more etheric energy flowing through the spinal nerves. It can cause annoying temporary symptoms of back pain or sciatic pain.
The spine relaxes and lets go in an uneven way, giving rise to the pain until the back finally balances out. Chiropractic care is often necessary for a while. Other helpful modalities are the spinal twist exercise, foot reflexology, and the red heat lamp shined on the back. The spinal release reaction can take a year or more to complete.
THE RETRACING PROCESS
This repeats some of the above, but is so important it bears repeating. The steps of retracing are:
1. The nutritional balancing program must cause a drastic increase in the vitality or adaptive energy level of the body. One may not feel this as more energy, since adaptive energy is different than just adrenal stimulation, for example.
2. An old emotional or mental trauma, an infection, or some other imbalance moves from a chronic to an acute state. In other terms, it comes up into waking consciousness for review and healing.
3. One must then re-experience the illness or event properly. This may involve reframing, redoing, re-analyzing or just handling a symptom without panicking. As you do this, the symptom or trauma resolves, and is gone forever.
If it is a major infection or trauma, it may not all resolve at one time. One may need to resolve part of it at a time, until after several flare-ups it is totally healed.
Common physical symptoms include diarrhea, constipation, aches or pains, muscle cramps, discharges, odors, rashes, fevers, breathing difficulty, headaches, or fatigue. Others include getting a cold, a flu, or retracing an old case of bronchitis, pneumonia, hepatitis, or some other infection. Old wound sites, scars, or injury sites often flare up, become painful or reddened, and then disappear.
Other symptoms are:
Bowel disturbances such as constipation or diarrhea, at times
Testicular pain in men with copper or cadmium removal
Changes in the menstrual period in young women
Ear symptoms (extremely common)
Chest wall pain
Liver/gall bladder pain
Solar plexus pain (also called third center pain)
Other aches and pains
Spinal release (discussed below)
Fevers or night sweats
More rarely, some people experience:
Nodules and lumps
Most symptoms during a nutritional balancing go away on their own in a few days to a week, and do not require any medical intervention. If any symptom persists or is bothersome, always check with your practitioner, and practitioners check with your coach and ask that I check to make sure the nutritional balancing program is correct, and how to proceed.
MENTAL AND EMOTIONAL PURIFICATION SYMPTOMS
These may include irritability, anxiety, fears, anger, depression, feelings of panic, brain fogginess, or others.
Long-forgotten memories occasionally surface, or one may have unusual dreams as the brain processes traumas or incidents from the past. Unusual dreams are not uncommon.
In fact, symptoms may include almost anything. Most healing reactions are mild and pass quickly.
UNUSUAL HEALING REACTIONS DURING A NUTRITIONAL BALANCING PROGRAM
The following three types of pain and tenderness bother some people during a nutritional balancing program. All are benign and will go away, but they are worth discussing so as not to be concerned.
Pain in the liver and gall bladder area. This occurs in some people on the program. It has to do with the liver acupuncture meridian, which becomes stressed as the liver eliminates many toxins.
The liver meridian runs down the front of the body from the right shoulder through the right nipple and gall bladder to the right leg crease. From there it turns around and goes up the back through the inner part of the shoulder blade and back up to the right shoulder. In some women, the right bra shoulder strap makes the pain much worse, and not wearing a bra helps.
This pain is not a cause for alarm. It is not a disease. It will slowly subside if one stays with the nutritional balancing program. However, it can take several years or longer to go away.
Coffee enemas are always helpful to speed healing of this meridian. Also helpful is opening the central channel or Conception Vessel in acupuncture terminology.
Actually, this type of pain and tenderness can be helpful. It tends to make a person stay with their health program. A little more information about it is in the Liver Detoxification article.
Pain and tenderness in the solar plexus. This is also somewhat common during a nutritional balancing program. Clients often think it is stomach pain, gastritis, or an ulcer. However, it is none of these.
It has to do with the third energy center and with an etheric gathering point or terminal that is located slightly above the umbilicus or belly button. It is a very positive sign!
It is not a problem, and it will slowly go away if one stays on the program. Interestingly, having a lot of children helps with congestion in this area. Those who have not been parents usually feel this reaction the most. For more, please read Third Center Pain on this site.
Chest wall pain. This also occurs, at times, during a nutritional balancing program. It is caused by tension in the intercostal muscles. For more about it, please read Chest Wall Pain.
Burning pain upon urination. Once in a while, a client reports burning pain in the urethra and bladder area upon urination. This can occur in children, at times, as well.
The cause is either retracing of an old bladder infection or the release of an irritating toxin through the kidneys and into the urine.
Retracing an old urinary tract infection is often helped by taking vitamin A – up to 20,000 iu daily for adults and less for children. Genital baths- 5 or 6 daily – are easy to do and also excellent for this symptom. Rubbing the bladder reflex area of both feet (outside, below the ankle bone, near the bottom of the foot but on the side, not the bottom) is also excellent, at times.
For the release of a toxin through the kidneys and bladder, drink more water, and perhaps take an Epsom salt bath – but no more than 3 baths per week. Both are benign, and tend to pass quickly.
If it continues and is annoying, reduce the supplement program and it will likely slow down the elimination and thus the pain or burning sensation will diminish. Eventually, it will pass when the toxin is completely eliminated.
It is also somewhat like the idea of an initiation in the old Oriental spiritual literature. It is a time when you must test all that you have learned and achieved. It is a time of testing, so to speak, and that is how it is like a form of initiation.
Unlike most initiation ceremonies, however, these are precipitated by the body, mainly, and not by a teacher, for example. However, events in life along with events in the body often coincide or reinforce each other in unusual ways to aggravate or push one into the crisis or initiation.
Medical intuitive Carolyn Myss and other authors discuss spiritual healing crises, spiritual depression, and even "spiritual madness". Anything that raises the body's energy level or alters chemistry, including a nutritional balancing program, can precipitate this.
Such a crisis may involve taking a leap of faith, letting go of old attachments, increasing self-awareness or a major shift in perspective. Many people are ill because they are secretly full of fear, guilt, self-hatred or self-loathing. The religious nature or aspects of these reactions or crises were mentioned earlier, and are very important.
Such reactions often involve a phase of turmoil and confusion. After passing through such a crisis, some physical healing usually proceeds rapidly.
Soul involvement. Retracing involves metanoia, which is a turning within the soul to look at itself and begin the return process to the Source or One. For more, read Metanoia on this website.
Religious healing. In religious terminology, retracing has to do with repenting, grace, faith, and mercy. It requires accepting and embracing oneself and all one’s faults, and then turning them over to God or the Creator, who takes them away in rather miraculous ways.
Plenty of forgiveness is also often required to get through a spiritual healing reaction. If you are having trouble with forgiveness, I suggest a program that is available via the internet called Total Forgiveness. Just type these words into a search engine, and the program will come up. It involves reading, and there is a seminar available for women.
Difficulties with this type of crisis. This type of crisis causes us the most problems of any type, because the readjustment of the body and mind are so profound that some people do not want to go through it. As a result, they hold back and continue with their old way of thinking and being. They may even dig in their heels and actively resist the changes that they need to move through.
The reason this type is difficult is that it is natural for the body and mind to resist change, and this is change on a very deep level, so the level of resistance can be rather high. Also, as one approaches the crisis, the old way stops working as well, so the person works even harder to make it continue to work. Also, the person often begins to feel tired and stressed in his or her older ways, and believes that this means one should stop moving forward, when, in fact, this is exactly what is needed.
Also, people start feeling worse and they stop listening to us. They think they are getting worse, when in fact, they are just in a healing crisis, and their judgment is impaired.
JUDGMENT ALWAYS IMPAIRED IN SPIRITUAL HEALING CRISES
In fact, one’s judgment is always impaired, and most impaired, during a spiritual healing crisis. This is because these reactions or crises always affect the mind, not just the body. So it does not matter if one believes that one’s mind is totally clear, or totally lucid. The mind is always seriously affected.
Most of the time, the mind is in a confused state, with part of the personality in the present, while another part is the past cleaning up certain mistakes or traumas or other types of imbalances. Yet another part of the mind is in the future, looking ahead to what is coming and trying to make sense of it, which is hard.
It may seem amazing that this could be taking place all at the same time, but many people report exactly this phenomenon. At the same time, a person is a 30 or 40 year-old adult, but another part of the person is a sad or unhappy 3 year-old, and yet another part is looking into the future, in fact, wondering where all this will lead and trying to get a handle on it before it bursts on the scene full-blown.
Trying to figure out the future is basically impossible because the future, by definition, is new and one has no reference points for it in one’s memory banks. So the effort is futile, but people spend a lot of time trying to figure it out ahead of time instead of gently moving forward and trusting in God and “thy will be done”. This is the correct solution to this problem. These are the reasons why judgment is seriously impaired in all cases of spiritual or life healing crises that arise on nutritional balancing programs.
EASY TO MISTAKE THESE KIND OF CRISES
This is also one reason we insist that clients keep in close touch with their practitioner, and I am available if the situation is severe, which is rare, but it happens now and then. If you try to handle this type of crisis on your own, you will often fail, or you will prolong the agony or damage the body by taking drugs such as anti-depressants, anti-anxiety pills or others to make it through the crisis. Often the person gets stuck in the crisis and never fully emerges. This is unfortunate, as it is not that hard to make it through with correct guidance and a correct nutritional balancing program.
At times, a new hair mineral analysis is helpful, but not always. But guidance from an experienced practitioner is always needed. I bring this subject up because these crises or retracing reactions are really quite exciting and represent significant movement forward and healing. However, if they are not handled correctly, a person can get stuck at some level or point in the process and progress often stops for one’s entire life due to fear and other forces.
One may say that the spiritual healing crisis is a kind of turning point. It must be handled correctly or the process stalls and one cannot move on properly.
TIPS FOR PRACTITIONERS TO HANDLE THESE SITUATIONS
The practitioner must take the time to explain what is going on and have the client read this article. This is a must. Also, the practitioner must know exactly what is going on, or contact me to confirm that something else is not occurring, such as just a stressful event.
Practitioners also need to take the time on the phone with these healing crises to “be there” for the clients. They must also help the person to stay the course, in most cases, although in a few cases it is helpful to back off on the supplements and perhaps the use of the sauna for a day or two. In general, however, the sooner one can get through the crisis, the better.
Practitioners must understand the high level of confusion and dissociation that can occur with these crises. This is why they must “be there”, both mentally and in other ways to essentially love the person through the crisis and out onto the other side. These are general ideas only, but are the most important ones to handle these situations with clients.
PRINCIPLES TO HELP HANDLE HEALING REACTIONS
1. The body will not undertake a healing reaction unless it can see it through to completion. I have found this to be true in at least 95% of healing crises, no matter how vigorous or unusual the symptoms.
2. Due to principle #1 above, reassurance and general supportive measures are usually all that is required, even with an intense purification or healing reaction. These measures are discussed below and include plenty of rest, a simple diet, and keeping a positive attitude.
Fearing these reactions, and reacting with horror or severe anxiety, definitely impairs the body’s ability to move through the reaction.
3. Medical interventions can worsen a healing reaction. For this reason, I urge clients not to immediately visit doctors or hospitals if they feel badly, and to first speak with their nutritional balancing consultant or doctor about their symptoms. In most cases, with supportive measures, and perhaps changing their program and a few simple remedies, the entire reaction subsides.
4. A nutritional balancing program causes continuous retracing. Healing occurs fast, and at deep levels, causing this. Therefore, any symptoms during a nutritional balancing program tend to be due to only three possibilities:
A) The program needs updating.
B) It is a healing reaction.
C) One is not following the program correctly. The usual way this occurs is that one is not eating enough cooked vegetables. These are absolutely needed to assist the body to remove toxic metals and chemicals, and to renourish the body.
IS IT RETRACING OR A WORSENING OF HEALTH?
Everyone worries that a flare-up of symptoms during a nutritional balancing program is not healing, but rather a disease. This is possible if one is not following the program correctly, or one needs a change in one’s program, or rarely due to some kind of stress on the body.
While not perfect, answering the five questions below can help one to know if a symptom is due to healing or something else.
1. Was the person following a nutritional balancing program, including diet, rest, supplements and the proper application of the sauna? Healing reactions occur most often when the body is given all that it needs. If the complete program is followed fairly strictly, the reaction is likely due to healing.
However, if a person is not following the program, or on a different regimen, then it is more likely that it is not a healing reaction. Also, if one is terminally ill, it may not be a healing reaction.
2. Was one feeling better before the reaction occurred? Healing reactions require energy. One’s energy level often increases until sufficient to initiate a reaction. Thus, a reaction can occur and often does just when one is feeling stronger. If one had been feeling worse, the reaction is less likely due to healing, however.
3. Have the symptom occurred in the past? Often, old symptoms or conditions recur during healing reactions. If one experienced the symptom in even the distant past, it is more likely, though not always, due to healing.
4. Are the symptoms unusual? Healing reactions often produce odd symptom pictures. One might develop a sore throat or flu without fatigue. This occurs when one is really not ill, though one may develop some features of an illness.
5. How long have symptoms lasted? Healing reactions usually do not last long. They may be vigorous but end in a few hours or at most about a week. If a reaction or flare-up lasts more than several weeks, it may be a worsening of one’s condition.
This one is tricky, however, because a deep-seated physical or emotional problem may take weeks or months to retrace completely in a few cases. Look to the other questions for more clarity, or do a hair analysis retest to gain more insight as to what is going on.
GENERAL SUPPORT FOR HEALING REACTIONS
1. Any time you do not feel well for more than one or two days, please ask your practitioner to have me check your entire program, including your state of hydration.
A program that needs updating, or drinking water that is not hydrating you, often causes symptoms that look just like a healing reaction.
Over half the time, that which appears to be a healing reaction is simply a need for an updated program. Your body chemistry has shifted, and your nutritional balancing supplements, and perhaps the diet, need to be updated. This is very important! We will let you know if we think you are moving through a healing or purification reaction.
If the problem is a need to update your program or drink different water, your symptoms should begin to improve within two or three days. If symptoms continue, then please ask your practitioner to have me check your program again. At times, a combination of factors is in play and this procedure is required.
2. If we tell you that you are experiencing a healing reaction or retracing, remain in close touch with your practitioner. A full nutritional balancing is not a do-it-yourself program. If you are retracing, your judgment is usually not clear. Do not try to solve things yourself. This is a hard and fast rule.
3. Rest lying down as much as possible. Resting more will allow the reaction to proceed much faster. Also, reduce stress and strain. Conserve energy for healing. Reduce mental as well as physical activity.
4. Eat lightly. Chicken soup with chopped vegetables in it is superb during all healing reactions. Reduce grains and meat during healing reactions, as these can slow them down.
Acute reactions. If you are very uncomfortable, it may be best to skip a meal. However, usually a bowl of chicken soup is better than fasting. Definitely, do not fast for more than one or two meals. Fasting depletes the body of nutrients and is yin, and harmful in the long run. For details, read Fasting.
While drinking adequate water is important during healing reactions, guzzling extra water is usually not helpful.
5. Discontinue nutritional supplements until a reaction passes. This is general advice only because at times, supplements are needed. However, until we check your healing reaction, it is best to discontinue them. Many reactions will proceed without them.
6. Other detoxification procedures are often helpful:
The pushing down exercise is always excellent. Doing it more will often help a reaction to pass more quickly.
Coffee enemas are usually excellent, and perhaps essential, if one feels constipated and toxic. More of them will often cause a reaction to pass more quickly. Vaginal coffee implants are also usually very good.
Foot and hand reflexology are superb during healing reactions. They can often move reactions along much faster!
The spinal twist is superb. Doing it more often will often help a reaction pass more quickly. Going to a good chiropractor is also often helpful.
Deep breathing. Breathing deeply and slowly is excellent during healing reactions. It is very calming for the nervous system and helps oxygenate the body, which will help the body move through the reaction faster.
The need for sauna therapy - but only with a heat lamp sauna - is variable during a healing reaction. Long sauna sessions tend to bring up more toxins for release. This can make one feel worse. The heat of the sauna may also cause more inflammation, which can make one feel worse. Often, it is best to reduce sauna sessions to less than 20 minutes, or skip sauna sessions entirely during a healing reaction. We can let you know about your situation if you ask your practitioner to check about saunas.
Use of a single red heat lamp during healing reactions is also variable for the same reasons.
7. Use care in discussing healing reactions with physicians and others unfamiliar with them. Healing symptoms can easily be misinterpreted as illness. This is an extremely common problem.
Unless your doctor, friend or family member understands the difference between illnesses and reactions, they will frighten you, perhaps run unnecessary tests, and often give you toxic medication that you don’t need, and which is rarely effective.
We never discourage people from visiting doctors. However, very few understand healing reactions or understand nutritional balancing programs. Most do not even know what questions to ask you to properly assess the situation. So please stay in touch with your practitioner and insist that he or she check with me as to what is going on.
OTHER SUPPORTIVE MEASURES
Watch your attitude. I find that if a person has a negative attitude or becomes too fearful with a healing reaction, this makes it more difficult to move through. So, if possible, relax as much as possible and attempt to be grateful for this healing action of the body. I know this is difficult, at times, but a positive attitude is extremely helpful for all healing.
For toxic reactions in general: As toxins are mobilized and eliminated, one may experience headaches, rashes, pain, dizziness, abdominal discomfort and other symptoms.
In addition to the general ideas above, more coffee enemas are wonderful for most detoxification reactions of this type. In addition, adding milk thistle and dandelion root to your nutritional balancing program may help.
Nausea is usually due to congestion of the liver due to toxin removal. More coffee enemas, up to four per day, is often helpful. Two coffee enemas can be taken back to back in the morning, and two back to back in the afternoon. This is a powerful combination, and this can be continued for a week or even a month or more, if needed.
In an extreme case, one can induce vomiting if extreme nausea is present. Drink salt water first, so the stomach is not empty. Lying down and remaining quiet for half an hour or more is often very beneficial.
SUPPORT FOR INFECTIONS
Retracing infections is often a bit scary, as one can develop fever, rashes, dizziness and other disturbing symptoms. However, if a person is following a nutritional balancing program, retracing most infections, no matter how vigorous they seem, is a benign and controlled process that requires little more than supportive therapy such as more rest, enough water, and a light diet. At times, colloidal silver, vitamin A or bee propolis are helpful.
Always make sure that one’s temperature does not rise above about 103-104 F. If it becomes higher, ways to lower it naturally include sponging the body with cool water, and a coffee enema or two will almost always lower a fever. This will have to be repeated every few hours, but that is okay.
Also, be sure you are well-hydrated when fever is present, as the body can easily become dehydrated. Drink water, and not tea or juice, please.
Common sites of chronic infections are the sinuses, ears, eyes, throat, bronchials, lungs, intestines, kidneys, skin and bladder. Most people have dozens of chronic infections that commonly flare up as they are healed. They go from chronic to acute, and are then eliminated. This is the reverse order in which they took hold in the body. Here are some simple and safe supportive therapies that are excellent for retracing infections.
Coffee enemas. These are excellent to help one move through any infection or fever. Up to four per day is fine.
Heat. Heat activates the immune system and may disable or even kill some microorganisms. For this reason, sauna use is excellent to help heal some chronic infections. Do not continue with sauna therapy if it just irritates the body, which occasionally occurs. It can be confusing, however, because at times the seeming irritation can be a healing process.
The light of the reddish heat lamp and the heat of the sauna definitely upsets most parasites, which is a type of ‘cold’ or ‘yin’ infection.
One can expose an area of chronic infection to more infrared as this can speed healing in some cases. This works very well on the sinuses, for example, and can work well with parasites in the intestinal tract or elsewhere in the body.
Another excellent idea is to shine one or more red heat lamps on the thymus gland area, which is the middle of the chest or breast bone. Do this for 30 minutes at a time, twice or three times daily. This may also speed up healing.
Diet. Eat lightly. Drink plenty of spring water. Chicken soup helps with some infections. Do not eat fruit or fruit juices, as they are too yin. Stay with the recommended diet but just eat less, especially if you are not too hungry. Never eat a lot when sick.
Infection remedies when retracing. Check with your consultant about taking any of these remedies, as they will be indicated sometimes, but not others. They include:
Limcomin. This is a product from Endomet Laboratories that contains some zinc, copper, vitamins A and C, and a little magnesium and vitamin B6. It is designed to support the immune response, and often works extremely well. Adults can take up to 6 tablets three times daily. Children need less depending on their size and weight.
Vitamin A (and not beta carotene). This is one of the most used natural remedies in nutritional balancing science. It strengthens mucus membranes and has other positive effects upon the immune response, so it is helpful for many infections of all kinds. Adults usually need about 25,000 to 50,000 iu per day for 5 days or so. The natural vitamin A from fish oil is somewhat better than the synthetic form, called retinyl palmitate.
Colloidal silver. I prefer the following brands, although other may work well, too. Arabesque, Endomet, Sovereign Silver and Live Silver. However, other brands are sometimes very good, too. The usual dose for a low-potency product for an adult is about 1 tablespoon three times daily, taken by itself, at least 15 minutes away from all food and all beverages before and after taking it. It may also be applied locally by sniffing it, inhaling it or putting it on the skin or a drop in an ear, for example.
Zinc. This important mineral by itself is usually not indicated during healing reactions because it lowers the tissue sodium level, which is usually low to begin with. However, in combination with copper, manganese, vitamin A and vitamin C, in the product called Limcomin, it is extremely helpful, at times.
Bee propolis. This is occasionally helpful for those following a nutritional balancing program.
Herbs such as Echinacea, golden seal, astragalus. These are used, at times, but I find they are not as helpful today, for some reason, as in the past.
Lifestyle. Rest lying down as much as possible.
Any infection that persists for more than several days may not be a healing reaction. In this case, consult a knowledgeable practitioner as infections can become serious threats to one’s health.
SUPPORT FOR OTHER COMMON RETRACING SYMPTOMS
For Pain in the Liver Area (which is common during a nutritional balancing program):
1. Rub the feet in the liver reflex area and on the top of both feet in the webbing between the first and second toes
2. Extra coffee enemas are often excellent.
3. You can also try taking extra ox bile and pancreatin (such as GB-3 by Endomet Labs).
4. You can add silymarin or milk thistle tincture and/or dandelion tincture. The tincture is often better than dry tablets. For adults, one can take up to 20 drops three times a day or up to 3 capsules three times per day of a standardized product.
For pain in the kidneys or ureters:
1. Drink extra water, up to one quart extra per day.
2. Distilled water for a few days is sometimes remarkably helpful.
3. Stinging nettles may be helpful, up to 20 drops three times/day of a standardized extract.
For itching or burning of the skin. An ancient remedy is wo oil.
1. This remedy burns badly when applied, but the burning subsides in about 10 minutes, and with it often the itching and burning of the rash also subsides.
2. Do not use in or near the eyes. They are too delicate for this remedy.
3. Do not use more than one or two drops. That is all that is needed.
4. Do not use on a baby, ever. The person must be at least 3 years old to use this remedy.
Wo oil is a fairly yang remedy, and one that is safe, but only if used properly. It can help with itchiness until a healing reaction passes. It is an ancient Tibetan formula that includes eucalyptus and camphor.
This remedy also seems to induce sleep, which is good if you have an itchy rash.
For Diarrhea: Elimination of antibiotics, metals or toxic chemicals may cause diarrhea. Rest plenty and eat lightly. Be sure to drink enough water to avoid dehydration. Avoid all fruit and all sweets!
Six charcoal tablets, three times per day will help absorb toxins.
Well-cooked garlic or 15 garlic capsules daily may be needed if one is releasing parasites. Eat lightly of non-fibrous, non-irritating foods such as rice, other grains, chicken and cooked vegetables until diarrhea passes. Severe diarrhea that persists requires intervention. Otherwise one may lose vital electrolytes and become dehydrated.
For Emotional Reactions: Emotional traumas deeply held need to be brought to consciousness to be released. When emotions or negative thoughts arise, allow oneself to feel them without suppressing or wallowing in the feelings. This can be difficult. Call your consultant or one of our program support counselors, if needed.
Doing more of the Roy Masters meditation exercise can be most helpful, as can the physical procedures such as coffee enemas, near infrared lamp sauna sessions, rubbing the feet, and the others.
Observe feelings from as neutral a viewpoint as possible. It is very helpful to talk with someone supportive to gain added perspective. Feelings will generally pass, washing over oneself like ocean waves.
Vigorous exercise can slow emotional reactions. Extra rest and sleep will help them pass more quickly.
Many people learned well to suppress their feelings and have great difficulty expressing them. One may become afraid of one’s own buried feelings. These people benefit from allowing themselves to cry, scream or otherwise express that which they feel. If this seems embarrassing, one can close the bedroom door or go sit in a car. For several years I would cry for no apparent reason, often in crowded places. At times I believed I was ill, but eventually the symptom passed and I found myself much happier.
For Nervousness And Anxiety: Elimination of stored caffeine, theophylline, diet pills or other stimulant substances can cause temporary feelings of anxiety as they are released. These will pass without requiring supportive therapy. Extreme fatigue or copper elimination can also cause feelings of anxiety.
If a feeling is very intense or persistent, nutritional supplements of calcium, magnesium, zinc, TMG (trimethylglycine) and/or ICMN (a product containing choline, inositol, methionine and niacinamide) may have a calming effect.
One may take up to 2500 mg of calcium, 1500 mg of magnesium, 100 mg of zinc, 4000 mg of TMG, and/or 1000 mg of choline, inositol, methionine and niacinamide in a 24-hour period. Sometimes one of these works better than another.
Resting, deep, slow breathing, calming herbs, massage, foot reflexology and other natural therapies may be helpful as well.
For Weight Loss or Gain: During nutritional balancing programs, weight may fluctuate. Weight gain may occur if the body retains water to buffer toxins that are being eliminated. Weight loss may occur even in a thin person as damaged tissue is broken down. One often will go through periods of greater tissue breakdown followed by periods of rebuilding. Shifts in glandular activity may temporarily cause weight gain or loss.
Most shifts in weight are not a cause for concern. In some cases, eating more or fewer calories may assist in balancing weight during a detoxification program. Usually, however, the nutritional balancing program needs to take its course and weight will normalize after several months to several years, depending on the toxicity of the body.
To Slow Healing Reactions: According to Dr. Paul Eck’s research, taking lecithin granules can help slow the elimination of toxic metals and chemicals. Do not take lecithin otherwise. Taking aspirin, Tylenol, tranquilizers or other over the-counter remedies is never recommended.
Children generally have a much easier time with retracing than adults. The reasons are:
1. Children usually have more vitality than adults.
2. Children often have less stress than adults.
3. Children are often more comfortable with the out-of-control feeling that may accompany a healing reaction.
4. Children have often experienced fewer traumas than adults that can get in the way of retracing.
5. Children have less inertia and other personality blocks that slow retracing.
6. The above often make children, as a group, much happier than adults, and this facilitates the retracing process.
7. It is usually much easier for children to just rest and relax when they do not feel well. Most adults have other obligations such as work or family that may prevent adequate rest.
DIFFERENT FROM MEDICAL “CURES”
Retracing is very different from healing or “cures” that occur with medical drugs, vitamins, herbs, homeopathy and most other healing methods.
Retracing actually restores the body to its previous healthy state.
Cures have the following characteristics:
- Symptoms may go away, but the whole body system is not restored to its previous wholeness.
- One may become dependent upon a remedy.
- There is often residual toxicity in the body due to the remedy
- The remedy sometimes masks the symptom.
AN ESSENTIAL ASPECT OF NUTRITIONAL BALANCING
Retracing occurs continuously or almost so during a nutritional balancing program. In 99% of cases, symptoms that arise during a nutritional balancing program are healing reactions and retracing. This is a primary quality of nutritional balancing programs that is not true of other healing programs.
DEVELOPMENT AND RETRACING
Development is the process of opening and growing the subtle human energy fields. This eventually yields a much stronger and long-lived body. Retracing always occurs as part of development. For more details, read Introduction To Development.
COMPLEXITY AND CONFUSION
Retracing is very complex. Using the 7 system, here are seven aspects of retracing that make it complex:
1. Life and death issues. Retracing can involve any body system. However, our bodies prioritize which diseases, toxins or other problems need to be dealt with first. Often, the first conditions that are retraced are not the ones that you think are most important. This can be very confusing.
For example, you may think your headaches or your fatigue are your most important symptoms. However, many people have far more serious conditions developing in their bodies such as tumors, aneurisms, heart attacks, ulcers, or emotional traumas. The body will often retrace these first because they are more important. This fact about nutritional balancing is annoying to some people – but can save your life.
2. Religious versus secular thinking. Some retracing is about mental, rather than physical imbalances. This is confusing and annoying for some people.
For example, a very common thinking pattern today is liberal, left-wing or secular thought. This belief system states that truth is relative and is whatever I want it to be. Books that teach absolute truth, such as the Bible, are often mocked. Often, these people have loose sexual attitudes and behavior, authoritarian political attitudes, intolerance of those who think differently, and believe that “the ends justify the means”.
Although some will disagree, in practice we find that this progressive, socialist, left-wing or liberal thinking is simply wrong, and this may be brought to your attention during some retracing reactions. If you don’t change your attitude, your progress on the program will slow down.
3. Vitality versus weakness. Retracing depends upon having plenty of vitality. A person’s vitality depends upon one’s age, diet, nutritional status, rest level, stress level, as well as genetic factors.
Unfortunately, many people lack vitality today, even young people. This gets in the way of retracing and can make healing reactions much more unpleasant and lengthy. Improving vitality is therefore important to facilitate retracing.
4. The role of self versus the role of others. Retracing is not just about oneself. In fact, it often involves a host of other beings. These can include bacteria, viruses, yeasts, parasites, souls, and, at times, other human beings. Any or all of these can and does influence the process of retracing, making retracing practically impossible to analyze.
This is why when clients tell me, for example, that they are “dumping copper” and that is their problem, I always correct them and say there could be two dozen other metals leaving the body, and much more going on, in addition.
5. Creative versus destructive aspects of retracing. Retracing often involves tearing down, killing and removing things. It also involves building and creating new tissues and other body structures.
For example, abnormal and diseased tissues, scars, and adhesions must be removed. The body must also kill harmful micro-organisms, and remove toxic metals and toxic chemicals. At the same time, it must synthesize new body tissue, organs and even entire body systems.
This is quite complex and occasionally can give rise to unusual reactions and symptoms that are difficult to understand.
6. Fast and slow retracing. The duration of healing reactions varies. Some removal and building of tissue can occur quickly. Other changes in the body take much longer.
For example, healing of the lungs and bronchials is often a slow process. In contrast, removal of some infections and toxic metals can go quickly with a nutritional balancing program.
The time delays and uneven nature of retracing can be extremely confusing.
7. Healing on many levels. Retracing occurs at the same time on physical, emotional, mental and spiritual levels. Diseases may need to be retraced, but at the same time one may need to clear out incorrect attitudes, harmful emotional responses, and more. The multi-dimensional quality of retracing can also be extremely confusing.
IN TWO PLACES AT ONCE
Retracing can be confusing for an unusual reason. When one retraces, the consciousness must, to a degree, be in two places at once. Here is why.
The original insult, illness or trauma may have occurred when you were perhaps 6 months old, or 2, or 5 years of age. To retrace it, one must go back to this time period. Yet one is also living in the present, and is perhaps 50 years of age or more, living a completely different life. The two time periods – early childhood, perhaps, and the present, superimpose during retracing.
As a result, one may feel strange emotions, have unusual thoughts and dreams, and feel a degree of disconnectedness or confusion. This can make a person feel out of control, which most people do not like. As a result, they rush to their doctor or consult their friends, all of whom know even less about what is going on, unfortunately.
HEALING REACTIONS IN THE TEETH AND EARS
These are among the most common healing reactions that occur during a nutritional balancing program. The reason is that most people have some chronic infection of the teeth and the ears. These infections will become acute for a short time as they heal, and this causes the symptoms.
Teeth. Common reactions associated with the teeth include pain, sensitivity, and a tooth may become loose for a while. Occasionally, an abscess – a bubble full of pus - will appear suddenly in a tooth or gum area, with no warning. The infection may be of the gum, a tooth, or a cavitation (an area where a tooth was removed or other dental work done). An X-ray will show what looks like decay, inflammation or an abscess.
In most cases, the dentist will recommend removal of the tooth, root canal treatment, antibiotics, or something else fairly drastic. However, in almost all cases, if one just persists on a nutritional balancing program, the entire episode will pass, leaving no residual damage or other effects.
In addition to the regular nutritional balancing program, helpful procedures are:
1. Use a reddish heat lamp on the jaw near the painful area for one to two minutes six or seven times daily. Move the lamp around, and get it as close to your skin as is comfortable.
2. Do foot reflexology, and look for the reflex point associated with the infected area. The article entitled Reflexology explains how to do this.
3. Take extra vitamin A, 25,000 to 50,000 iu daily of preferably natural, pre-formed vitamin A. Beta carotene is less effective.
One of our clients, age 65, had only been on a nutritional balancing program a few months. His initial complaint was prostate cancer, and nothing was mentioned about teeth. He woke up one day with severe pain and swelling of the gum near two teeth. The entire left side of his face was quite swollen. The client needed pain killers to sleep.
He went to the dentist, who did an X-ray and told him it was a severe and deep abscess and that two teeth needed to come out at once. He asked me about it, and I said it was most likely a healing reaction.
I suggested he just stay with his program for a few days and see what happens. I also suggested continuing with the near infrared lamp sauna sessions, and to focus a reddish heat lamp on the area of his jaw where the reaction was for 2 minutes several times a day, as that might speed up the completion of the reaction. I also suggested he take 50,000 iu of natural vitamin A daily for a few days.
Two days later, as he was brushing his teeth, the swelling on his gum opened up, filling his mouth with pus and blood. The pain then went away, and he has had no more problems with those teeth for over 15 years.
Ear healing reactions. These can include pain, swelling, hearing loss, dizziness or some ringing in the ears. Taking antibiotics as a child for ear infections seems to predispose one to chronic ear problems.
These reactions will eventually pass on a nutritional balancing program. In addition to the regular program, helpful procedures are:
1. Do reflexology and focus on the ear reflexes, which are the tips of the toes. This is very powerful.
2. Check with us because at times a natural remedy will also help.
To become well, many people must change the configuration or shape of their bony structures. This can include be their spine, their cranial bones, and their posture.
For this purpose, nutritional balancing is superb. In addition, one may need chiropractic care, perhaps for an extended period of years. At times, bodywork such as Rolfing or Structural Integration may also be helpful. Techniques such as Feldenkreis work and others may also be helpful.
Here is an example of this type of retracing. An elderly man (age 72), who had been a client for several years, suddenly developed a frozen shoulder. He woke up one morning and could not raise his right arm. He visited his medical doctor, who took an X-ray and told him there was a lot of arthritis in the shoulder joint and he should have a shoulder joint replacement as soon as possible.
The client then spoke to me about it. I told him I doubted that he had arthritis and it was probably some kind of healing reaction. I referred him to an excellent chiropractor. Within two visits, the shoulder joint unlocked, and was as good as new.
This case exemplifies a problem with x-rays when one is following a nutritional balancing program. The x-ray showed inflammation and the doctor assumed it was caused by arthritis, as there were symptoms of pain and immobility, as well. However, healing reactions also produce inflammation, but it is a type that heals the body.
Unfortunately, they can look the same on an x-ray. This is very confusing for doctors and for our clients and practitioners, alike.
Other clients wake up with stiff necks and other structural problems. These are also healing reactions, in most cases, due to uneven releasing of tension in the spine. They go away on their own. The Spinal Twist Exercises and quality chiropractic help, as well.
THE INCOMPLETE STRESS WAVE IDEA
Overcoming any stressful or traumatic event or situation requires passing through several stages. They can be represented as phases of a wave. They are:
1. The up part of the wave = an inflammatory response or sympathetic nervous system response. Visually, this looks like the part of a wave that is above the neutral or zero line. It is usually the shape of a bell or an arc.
In this step, the body and/or brain mobilize their forces to fight off and overcome the insult, toxin or situation.
A fight ensues. This is when a child might scream or cry, and it might last half an hour, or as long as it takes to overcome the trauma or insult to the body.
This is associated with a faster oxidation rate and a fight-or-flight response. It may continue until the stressor is overcome. However, often it stops before full healing takes place due to nutritional problems. For example, the body loses zinc, calcium and magnesium quickly in this phase. The body can only lose a certain amount safely, and then it must shut down this phase for safety.
2. The down wave = regeneration or a parasympathetic response. After the up wave, the body moves into a regenerative phase. The parasympathetic branch of the autonomic nervous system is more active and it is a resting and healing phase.
Ideally, at the end of the down wave phase, one is fully healed and restored, and ready to face the world once again. However, most people become stuck in some part of the up wave or the down wave and do not complete the healing process. Retracing is then needed to restore the proper stress response.
In these cases, in order to complete the healing process, one must go back into the situation, or metaphorically “revisit the scene of the crime” and re-process the entire situation correctly. This is what you are doing when you retrace. For more on the concept of the stress wave, please read The Stress Wave on this site.
THE PSYCHOLOGY OF HEALING REACTIONS
Healing reactions are often accompanied by psychological shifts. This is an interesting area of study in nutritional balancing science. Changes in perception, cognition, and one’s rate of processing of information may occur. Here are some of the more important examples of this (excerpted from Nutritional Balancing And Hair Mineral Analysis, 2010, 2014, and 2016 editions):
Physically-linked Reactions: Some emotional releases or reactions are linked to physical toxins. For example, many of the toxic metals directly affect neurotransmitter levels and specific parts of the brain. Iron, for example, is known to settle in the amygdala, an area of the brain associated with anger and rage.
Thus as physical toxins are eliminated, emotional states will change. As health improves, the body sends positive messages to the brain. For example, an emotional “crisis” may occur as it becomes more difficult to hold on to negative feelings and beliefs. A related cause of a “crisis” is when cognition and perception improve to a point that a person can no longer continue thinking the same improper or false way as before.
Energy-related Reactions: Enhancing a person’s adaptive energy level causes the brain to function better. Improvements then occur in mental clarity, memory and awareness.
Energy is required to feel feelings, even to feel a depression. Thus, as one’s energy level improves, one experiences more intense feelings.
For example, many times, a mineral analysis has revealed a pattern associated with depression. The client, however, said he or she did not feel depressed. After several weeks to several months on a nutritional balancing program, the client reported feelings of depression.
These are cases in which one’s feelings are suppressed simply due to low adaptive energy. As more energy becomes available, feelings increase. The client began to feel what had previously been inaccessible or suppressed. Once the feelings surface, they usually resolve quickly on their own. The brain, like the body, is self-healing provided it functions correctly.
For a psychological view of this phenomenon, I recommend Arthur Janov’s books, The Primal Scream and The Primal Revolution. This assists one to question beliefs about oneself and about the world. More capable of understanding oneself, one lets go of false beliefs and destructive behaviors.
Decompensation Reactions: Certain attitudes and behaviors are compensations for ill health or low energy. As health improves, these are no longer needed and may disappear suddenly. A surprising shift may occur, often accompanied by an insight about oneself or about the world.
Sometimes an emotional toxin is a major stumbling block that stops the healing process until the client is willing to address it. Psychotherapy or other healing modalities may be required. Body work and other therapies can also be excellent to work with emotional wounds that retard healing.
Simple adjustment reactions. These are common and involve a simple replacement of a toxic mineral with a more physiological mineral, or the correction of a simple enzyme system of the body. Another simple reaction or adjustment is the improvement in a glandular or organ activity.
The work of Arthur Janov and R.D. Liang. These two psychologists have written fascinating books about retracing. They did not use the same nutritional balancing methods as we do, but they were able to produce powerful and very healing changes in people through removing distractions and a lot of love, mainly. I highly recommend their books. Dr. Janov wrote The Primal Scream (1970) and about 10 other books. He is still writing today.
R.D. Liang wrote about schizophrenia in The Divided Self (1960) and Self And Others (1961). These authors understand mental and emotional healing reactions quite well.
RETRACING IS A KIND OF INFLAMMATION
It is clear from our experience that retracing involves a very beneficial inflammatory reaction of the body. Serum tests may reflect this with slightly elevated liver enzymes, for example. There may also be mild serum electrolyte imbalances such as a low sodium and low chlorine. There may even be an elevation of blood sugar. None of these seem to do harm, and all are temporary.
These may be due to kidney stress from a toxic metal elimination, or may be due to other factors that have yet to be elucidated.
It is also clear from our limited research that a retracing or healing reaction is very different from the chronic inflammation that so many people suffer from. During a healing reaction, the inflammation is of a very different type. It is a sign that the body has some “fight” in it, and is mounting a powerful and successful reaction to the presence of a chronic infection, a toxin, a lesion, or something else. That is all it is.
Stopping this type of inflammation with drugs, for example, or even with anti-oxidant or anti-inflammatory nutrients or herbs is not a good idea, and will stall or delay the healing process. One should stop it only if the inflammation is very painful or otherwise disruptive or dangerous. Otherwise, leave it alone and it will pass quickly, in most cases.
“ARMORING UP” PATTERN RELATED TO HEALING REACTIONS
An interesting pattern seen on some retest hair mineral analyses is called armoring up. It consists of a reduction in the readings of some of the toxic metals and nutrient minerals that were already low, so that they now fall into a Poor Eliminator range, or go deeper into this range.
Armoring up pattern is often related to a healing reaction. It is somewhat akin to “putting on your armor” in order to handle certain old traumas or other old situations. For more details, read Armoring Up Pattern.
HEALING REACTIONS ON BLOOD TESTS
Some clients go to medical or other doctors seeking help for a healing reaction. These doctors run blood tests and are often surprised and upset with the results. Common imbalances seen on blood tests during healing reactions are:
1. Low thyroid hormone levels, or elevated TSH.
2. Slightly elevated liver enzymes due to liver irritation.
3. Low sodium and/or chloride levels, due perhaps to kidney irritation.
4. Slight macrocytic anemia in a few cases. This can be due to an elimination of toxic iron, which damages some red blood cells. It is actually a slight hemolytic anemia, not pernicious anemia although they may appear similar on blood tests.
5. Elevated ferritin if the body is eliminating iron or manganese, perhaps.
6. Other abnormalities occasionally occur.
None of these imbalances are a cause for alarm, but many doctors do not understand healing reactions, so they may react with alarm and want more tests, drug or hormone therapy, or other measures to correct the blood tests. In fact, if an abnormal blood or urine test is due to retracing, if one just waits a few weeks to a month, most abnormal blood tests will begin to normalize by themselves without a need for more tests or any medical or other type of therapy.
EXTENDED HEALING REACTIONS
While most healing reactions do not last more than a few days or a week, some will persist for a month or rarely up to a year.
These are deep healing processes that cannot be resolved quickly. They require some faith to just stay with the nutritional balancing program and the reaction will eventually pass.
For at least one year, this author coughed up greenish mucus from the lungs. He had asthma and allergies as a baby and throughout childhood, so this reaction was not too surprising.
The souls inside a person often need healing and can go through retracing and healing reactions. These will influence the physical body and brain, in some cases.
When a person experiences any type of trauma, it causes the loss of a few or more of one’s souls. In all cases, the person is a little less intelligent, more confused, and loses some willpower when this occurs.
Soul recovery is the return to a person of some or all of these lost souls. It is an important part of retracing that is necessary for complete healing of the body and brain. For more details, read Soul Recovery.
EFFECTS OF RETRACING ON FAMILY MEMBERS
When a person has a healing reaction, it can be difficult for other family members for several reasons:
1. It may appear that the person is ill, although retracing is not the same as illness.
2. The person may not want to go to a conventional doctor because he or she knows that the vast majority of doctors have no understanding of healing reactions.
3. The person may have unusual symptoms that don’t make sense. This is a characteristic of healing reactions.
4. If the person is retracing an emotional trauma or imbalance, he or she may “act out” or act out of character, which is also disconcerting.
DISCUSSING HEALING REACTIONS
Please exercise care when discussing healing reactions with doctors, family members and friends. The problem is that these people rarely understand retracing and healing reactions. They will often become upset, and will scare you, usually needlessly.
In addition, doctors will often recommend drugs or other procedures that, in our experience, usually do not work well and can delay or even worsen a healing reaction.
Instead, if you are concerned with a symptom, always call your practitioner and ask that Dr. Wilson review your program and make suggestions.
You can also call Dr. Wilson directly. Don’t email because he is often a day behind with email. He will not hesitate to recommend a medical intervention if that seems best. However, in our experience with thousands of healing reactions, medical intervention is very rarely needed with healing reactions.
THE DANGERS OF RETRACING
Almost all retracing reactions are totally benign. Most pass quickly and easily without causing too much discomfort or upset. However, once in a while they are extreme. Here are some examples:
Case 1. Robert, age 60, had had a severe car accident 30 years before in which he temporarily became paralyzed from the neck down. However, he seemed to recover after a few months, although his health was never very good after the accident.
Robert also had a mouthful of silver/mercury amalgam dental fillings that he did not have removed. We always recommend removing these to reduce the toxic load on the body.
After about five years on a nutritional balancing program, Robert began to become weak and at one point lost the ability to walk normally. He was hospitalized and doctors told him he had a neck injury that required immediate surgery.
At first, he postponed the surgery, and instead began a long recovery with a nutritional balancing program using an infrared lamp on the neck area, along with the rest of the program.
Although he was recovering, it was very slow. As a result, at one point he agreed to have neck surgery to release tension in the neck. This speeded up his recovery somewhat. Today, some 10 years later, he continues with his nutritional balancing program.
Case 2. Peter, age 78, was diagnosed with multiple myeloma. He was given 6 months to live. He chose to follow a nutritional balancing program and began to feel better almost immediately. He continued to feel better for about one and one-half years. However, when he was at his best, he began to have pain in his kidneys. This was likely a healing reaction as the body removed a lot of toxins through the kidneys.
Unfortunately, Peter’s family panicked, as they believed he was having a relapse of his cancer. He was admitted to a hospital, where he was given a large dose of morphine, and perhaps other drugs. Peter’s body could not handle the highly toxic dose of morphine. He soon lapsed into a coma and died within a few days.
Case #3. An acquaintance of this author built a sauna and began using it daily. However, he did not have a hair mineral test and he did not follow a nutritional balancing diet or take supplements.
He began to feel better overall, and a very chronic sinus condition he had had since childhood improved a lot. However, after about a year of this incomplete program, he began having trouble breathing and went to a doctor.
He was diagnosed with a defective heart valve from endocarditis, and required surgery and antibiotics to overcome this. I do not think this was a retracing reaction, since he was not following a complete program, but it is possible that an old infection was stirred up and his body did not handle it well.
Case #4. Mrs. G, age 71, had followed a complete nutritional balancing program carefully for several years. She retraced many old health conditions fairly easily.
However, at one point she developed breathing difficulty and was diagnosed with a chronic bronchitis. She recalled having this as a child.
Her breathing difficulty was so severe she could not sleep for a few days, and ended up in the hospital, where she slowly recovered her health. She is still following a nutritional balancing program today.
These cases are important because they point out possible dangers and necessary cautions that should be observed with any healing reaction. They include:
1. To handle retracing best, always remove all silver/mercury amalgam dental fillings and all root canal-filled teeth as soon as possible.
2. Be very careful with the use of medical drugs if a person is having a healing reaction. These drugs can kill.
3. Always follow a nutritional balancing diet and supplement program to stay safe with healing reactions.
A DEEPER ASPECT OF RETRACING
The Bushmen of the Kalahari Desert in Africa have a saying that as one goes through life, one leaves traces. When one matures, one must go back and clean up these traces. This is retracing at a deeper and more complete level.
HEALING REACTIONS IN CONVENTIONAL MEDICINE
Allopathic or drug medicine recognizes the existence of healing reactions, although most doctors are not familiar with them. In allopathic medicine, they are called Jarisch-Herxheimer reactions - named after two doctors who first noticed them. Here is an excerpt from a medical website:
“A Jarisch-Herxheimer reaction is a fairly common reaction to antibiotic treatment of syphilis that involves fever and headache. It may occur up to 8 hours after the first treatment of early syphilis. The reason the Jarisch-Herxheimer reaction occurs is not clear. But it may be caused by the toxins released from the syphilis bacteria as they are destroyed by antibiotics. A Jarisch-Herxheimer reaction is not the same as an allergic reaction to penicillin.”
Here is a another description from a medical website:
“(The healing reaction) resembles bacterial sepsis and can occur after initiation of antibacterials, such as penicillin or tetracycline, for the treatment of louse-borne relapsing fever (80-90% of patients) and in tick-borne relapsing fever (30-40%). An association has been found between the release of heat-stable proteins from spirochetes and the reaction.
Typically, the death of these bacteria and the associated release of endotoxins or lipoproteins occurs faster than the body can remove the substances (my italics). It usually manifests within a few hours of the first dose of antibiotic as fever, chills, rigor, hypotension, headache, tachycardia, hyperventilation, vasodilation with flushing, myalgia (muscle pain), exacerbation of skin lesions and anxiety.
The intensity of the reaction indicates the severity of inflammation. The reaction commonly occurs within two hours of drug administration, and is usually self-limiting.”
Here is a little information about the two medical doctors who first wrote about healing reactions:
Adolf Jarisch was an Austrian dermatologist who was born in 1850 and died in 1902. Dr. Jarisch published his description of the Jarisch-Herxheimer reaction in 1895. As this was many years before the discovery of penicillin, the original description related to the treatment of syphilis with mercury.
Karl Herxheimer was a German dermatologist who was born in 1861 and died in 1944. Dr. Herxheimer published his description of the Jarisch-Herxheimer reaction in 1902.”
MODERN MEDICAL STUDIES OF HEALING REACTIONS
Healing reactions are currently being studied to understand them better. Here are two recent references:
Many famous doctors who worked in the natural healing field recognized the existence of retracing and healing reactions:
1. Chiropractic. Here they are referred to as flare-ups. Here is a quote from a chiropractic website:
“We tell patients that they may have flare-ups throughout treatment. This is a very important communication, because if the patient’s expectation is that there will be a steady and unwavering improvement in symptoms, the flare-up after treatment can feel like a defeat and as invalidation.
In adjusting the spine and stretching tissue that has been shortened for many years, it is usually not possible to avoid discomfort and flare-ups. The flare-up can be seen as a good thing because it tends to corroborate our diagnosis and it tells us that we are in the right place. As the chiropractic care continues, pain and discomfort associated with it tends to diminish.” – from http://www.goldmanchiro.com/articles/
2. Natural medicine. Dr. Max Gerson, MD, who pioneered natural cancer therapies and the use of the coffee enema, called these reactions flare-ups. Here is a quote from the chapter entitled Reactions – Flare-Ups in his excellent book, A Cancer Therapy - Results Of 50 Cases:
“A number of patients have remarked, within the first two weeks of the treatment, that they cannot stand the diet and wish to discontinue it. They base their opinion on the following occurrences: nausea, headaches, in some cases vomiting, spasms in the intestines, more gas than usual, no appetite … and trouble with coffee enemas.”
3. Bernard Jensen, ND, DC, PhD wrote an entire booklet entitled The Doctor-Patient Handbook, Dealing with the Reversal Process and the Healing Crisis, BiWorld Publishers, Inc., Provo, Utah, 1976,.
4. William Frederich Koch, MD, PhD also wrote extensively about healing reactions in his excellent technical book, The Survival Factor in Neoplastic And Viral Diseases, published by William Koch, 1955, 1958, and 1961.
5. Psychology. In psychology and psychoanalysis, these reactions are called the catharsis. Here is a quote from Wikipedia about the subject:
“The term catharsis has been adopted by modern psychotherapy, particularly Freudian psychoanalysis, to describe the act of expressing, or more accurately, experiencing the deep emotions often associated with events in the individual's past which had originally been repressed or ignored, and had never been adequately addressed or experienced.”
6. Yeast infection literature. Here these reactions are called die-off reactions or purification reactions. Discussions are found in books such as The Yeast Connection; A Medical Breakthrough by William Crook, MD, 1986, 2007.
7. Homeopathy. We do not recommend homeopathy at all. It is very yin and we find that it is harmful, even if it causes symptomatic improvements. However, homeopaths know about healing reactions, which they call aggravations. Below is a short quote from Dr. Christian Friedrich Samuel Hahnemann, founder of homeopathy:
“The intensity and duration of the similar aggravation gives us a clue about the correctness of the chosen remedy, the patient’s vital force, prognosis, and for case management.”
Thus, the concept of healing reactions or retracing is not new, nor is it esoteric or unknown.
Other articles about retracing on this website:
1. Gerson, M., MD, A Cancer Therapy - Results of 50 Cases. An entire chapter is devoted to “Flare-Ups”.
2. Koch, W.F., MD, The Survival Factor in Neoplastic and Viral Diseases. Healing reactions are mentioned often in this superb book.
3. Jensen, B., DC, ND, The Doctor-Patient Handbook, and The Science And Practice of Iridology. Dr. Jensen mentions “The Healing Crisis” often in these books.
4. One can also read more about healing reactions in other books about chiropractic, psychotherapy, homeopathy, and other healing arts.