Rethink Health - August 2012

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The Olympian Spirit

The Olympic Games London 2012 closed last night, and have been generally hailed as a major success. I, not generally a sport follower, admit to having watched some of the highlights with relish.

Much was made of the roar of the crowd, of the dignity and comportment of the competitors, and the huge, almost tangible, goodwill expressed continually by everyone in attendance at all the games venues. The Commentariat are wondering how this Spirit can be sustained into the future, moving British society up a gear or three.

As I see it, this has been the most exciting possibility to emerge from these Games – that the very notion of Spirit may come back into mainstream thinking in this country.

We have, in even the recent past, been embarrassed by such primitive notions as Spirit. We fancy ourselves above all that hocus-pocus, proudly holding the scientific high ground - and mistaking it as moral height, too.

The Anglia TV ŌHealth ExperimentĶ, nearly 20 years ago, involved Sebastian Coe at the very beginning of his political career. The producer expected gains in physical prowess but the overwhelming result was a major surge of wellbeing in Northampton, and a strong wish to continue the programme. Nothing was made of this, unfortunately, and it was allowed to dissipate.

I wonder if Lord Coe remembers that, and whether it broadens in any way his perspective on the success he has just spearheaded? He is bound to be drawn into the Olympic Legacy. How wisely may he move?

We know that there are many ways to enhance and nurture Spirit. I call it Essence on the website – - and there devote a book to it. Life is defined by its Essence, which until 200 years ago was the subject of respectable scholarship and husbandry. Since then we have banked exclusively on physics and biochemistry, and lost sight of Essence. LetÕs refresh what our ancestors learned:-

¯We nourish Essence best with the Essences of our foods. But food Essence dwindles quickly when the food dies, so we must eat at least some of our food raw and still alive, and the rest freshly cooked.

¯The Essence of foods, and all organisms, originates with or from sunlight. Dr Bach exploited this in the preparation of his Flower Remedies. We fear the sun, and certainly need to avoid sudden extreme exposure. But regular moderate exposure vitalizes Essence.

¯The air we breathe and water we drink are now largely dead, but can sustain vitality, including negative electric charge, acquired normally by swirling and vortical motion. We already have technology to revitalize both, though we have much to learn about them – starting with respect. The same technologies are exploited in the manufacture of homoeopathic and anthroposophic remedies.

¯Purposeful activity comes late in this list. Life is wasted if it lacks meaning and accomplishment. Sport is only one possible outlet, part of the re-creation we need to offset over-specialised working occupations.

¯Time for reflection on events, and the ultimate goal to which they tend.

I donÕt think Lord Coe would recognize much of this – far less most political advocates of the Big Society! But a little respect and encouragement stirs the Essence in all of us. We can achieve so much more than we do, with or without an Olympic Legacy. And every little helps!

Eggs On . . .

Whilst other foods have declined, eggs have improved in the past 30 years – fewer calories, less cholesterol and far less saturated fat.

This benefit is borderline, but thereÕs more: the Vitamin D content has nearly doubled. For a nation that shuns the sun, eggs may be part of the answer.

. . .But Apples Work Better

As well as conditioning your bowel contents, plenty of apples can reduce your blood cholesterol – the LDL, harmful kind – by 25%. Four or five apples daily will do it, or an equivalent amount of dried apple rings (75g).

It might prove easier to cut down the carbohydrates, and halve the apples! Cholesterol in your blood is in practice made from starch, fuel you cannot burn off - not from fats you have eaten. A low starch, unlimited fat diet (e.g.Atkins) actually lowers your blood cholesterol, dramatically.

Nasal ÔFlu Vaccine

The Department of Health has just announced its intention of providing a flu vaccine, in nasal spray form, to every child between 2 and 17, from 2014.


The method of administration mimics nature much better, and is therefore a step in the right direction. The inclusion of very young children thrills me not, however. They have plenty to cope with from the real threats that surround them at home and in their neighbourhoods, without adding more. The fittest children I know of happen also to be the least vaccinated.


Far the best protection for children, as for all of us, is good nourishment, fresh air and buoyant general vitality – the springboard of an excellent immune response to all threats, not just a lengthening list of particular bogeymen.


But thatÕs one less needle for everyone, I hope. Eventually.