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What is a Paradigm Shift?

“We all live in the same world but we all live in a different reality”.

To me, in my reality, this feels like a correct statement but some may disagree, so I’ll put forward a few suggestions.

Wikipedia defines paradigm as “a distinct set of concepts or thought patterns”. This term is usually used in the field of science and philosophical  theories but lets apply it to real life for a moment. Bruce Lipton talks about the frequency of brain activity of a child up to the age of 6 or 7 being at a very low level called theta waves. This is where they download information without question. Bruce’s discussion focuses on how this affects our behaviour on an emotional level and our relationships with others but also as we are brought up we are exposed to certain beliefs and ways of doing things that affect every aspect of our lives from the way we eat to the way we tie our shoe laces. This then becomes our reality and it is also how we gauge what we perceive to be normal and what is not. It is your paradigm, your model by which you live your life, how you judge things, how you interact with others, how you define what is acceptable behaviour and so on. We’re talking about a situation where someone can be so deep rooted in a paradigm that it will often lead them to behave in a way where they don’t question their behaviour but other people would find it ridiculous or unacceptable.

So generally speaking you could say that certain groups of people live within certain paradigms. I say generally because even within that paradigm there will be sub-groups of people who have additional or differing beliefs based around things such as religion or local or family traditions. And even on an individual level every person’s view of the world is going to differ depending on their personality and the experiences they have had. It is their personal paradigm, their version of reality.

What if something happened to you that created a paradigm shift? If this happened to us as a child, especially before the age of seven it would be easier to challenge the beliefs we had already established and downloaded because we are still in a state where the programme can be changed easily. This probably doesn’t happen that often though, because a child of that age in a normal situation would be with their parents and members of their family group who have alot of shared beliefs and they wouldn’t interact enough with others outside of this paradigm to create a shift.

Really what we’re talking about is in adult life, being in a situation where we are consistently exposed to these new beliefs. It is almost like your new environment becomes a constant affirmation of these new ways of thinking and slowly but surely you feel less challenged by them and start to take them on board. How often does this happen? I’m not sure to be honest and it will be challenging because there is almost this unseen force generated within your existing paradigm that stops you from making the full shift. It’s so strong that even moving to another country and a new environment you often gravitate towards those that resonate with you and have shared beliefs because it’s comfortable and it isn’t challenging.

And this is the crux of it. It’s about being comfortable and not being challenged isn’t it? We are happy to reinforce each others’ beliefs to ensure that nobody changes too much. God forbid we should look into things and find out what life is really about! Better to just accept the status quo, no one needs to deal with difficult emotions or traumas, most of which have been established within the family unit or school or some other imbalanced environment, between being in the womb and age 7 where the information is just downloaded without question.

So even though there is a shadow side to our personalities and unprocessed traumas, that we had to split off from when we were children as a survival mechanism, best leave it all buried so as not to have to deal with those memories and associated emotions. The only problem is that these suppressed emotions could be consuming vast amounts of what Neil Kramer refers to as our “light energy” and even preventing us from reaching our highest potential.

Some people don’t even know any better, they don’t even know there is a different paradigm out there for them. Even if you were brave enough to go there, there are people who don’t want you too. They couldn’t bear to see you break out of the chrysalis and move onto the next stage of your journey. It would just push too many buttons for them. They would swear blind that this is not the case but within them the turmoil would reach insanity levels bringing up emotions of fear, jealousy and anger which would often get projected onto you. Within their paradigm the accepted norm is to be happy with your unhappiness, to numb yourself and suppress any feelings that are “not quite right” with the various distractions that are provided and considered normal by society.

Wow, so it sounds really hard to make a paradigm shift?? Not always, it could just be that change in environment or moving to another a country, or simply meeting and spending time with a person who has a different view on life. Of course, your beliefs and emotional balance will be challenged even if for a short time but the support provided by that new environment or new friend will ease this. Alot of the time, however, it will take something big to create the shift. In counselling circles this is often referred to as a “crisis in transition”. A person gets to a crisis point in their life where they end up making choices that they would never normally make. These choices challenge the paradigm because it is their paradigm that has contributed to them reaching this crisis point. We continually accept things either because, as I said before, it is comfortable and non-challenging or we don’t have the courage or are too afraid to change the situation.

This crisis can manifest in many ways, a drink or drugs overdose, losing a job, the loss of a loved one, an accident, mental health issues, a relationship break up, your child experiencing vaccine injury, an illness, witnessing a traumatic incident, losing your home, the list is endless. Some people may have to experience rock bottom and for others it may be something small but just enough for them to start questioning their current paradigm.

Despite the fact that you have to process some challenging emotions, deal with a possible shift in your circumstances and face the negative reactions of others, you are willing to do this because of the situation you are in. It is never an overnight process, it takes time and courage especially when those around you, mostly on a subconscious level, don’t want you to change. But the catalyst is there, you will have a lot of questions along the way and you will make umpteen mistakes, you may also get drawn back into old habits, but under the surface it will feel so uncomfortable that you will need to keep on pushing for answers. It could be suggested that the change you need to make as a person could be made within the same paradigm but this isn’t the way it works. Because it’s your current paradigm that has created the crisis or the way you view the crisis then the entire paradigm has to shift for you to move on and for the metamorphosis to happen.

Eventually you will become a more centred, confident, less fearful person with more self esteem and self worth, more openess and a greater connection to the world. It’s that greater connection that hopefully will allow you to continually shift and change going through several paradigms before settling for one that really fits with you once more “layers of the onion” have been peeled back.

Don’t wait for a crisis to happen before you make the shift. If something doesn’t feel quite right, don’t push it down, question it and see where it takes you.

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Magnesium Will Liberate Your Life

You can’t really classify minerals under spiritually but, if you could, magnesium would be the spiritual mineral.

The essence of magnesium is about relaxation, it’s about being in your body and expanding into yourself. It is the mineral that will allow you to let go on a physical level whilst simultaneously increasing your energy levels. Just increasing the levels of bio-available magnesium in your body will create a significant change in you as a person.

Magnesium is a macro mineral that is required in the body in fairly large amounts and as long as you’re eating right it is easy to get enough into your body to maintain your levels. But, this is the problem, there are alot of people out there who aren’t eating right and as a result it is affecting them on a cellular level because they didn’t have enough magnesium to start with. In fact they are actually depleting their levels by their food and drink choices. A high fat diet will reduce the amount of magnesium absorption and drinks that have a diuretic effect such as sugary or caffeinated drinks will cause magnesium (and potassium) to be lost through the urine. When we eat refined/processed foods the body actually has to tap into it’s own magnesium resources (as well as other vitamins and minerals) in order to be able to digest and metabolise this food.

Magnesium is present in about 300 different enzymes in the body and is used to activate starch digesting enzymes. We require the presence of magnesium in order to able to absorb calcium, it is involved in the activation of muscles and nerves and it is used in the synthesis of RNA and DNA in our cells. We really have got to pay more attention to our magnesium intake!

Let’s look at it in more detail on a cellular level. Magnesium sits inside your cell alongside potassium which is where these two electrolytes (the ionised constituents of a living cell – i.e. they carry an electrical charge) belong in our body (the other place you also find a high proportion of magnesium in the body is in the bones). Amongst other functions potassium assists in cellular biochemical reactions, protein synthesis, converting glucose into glycogen so it can be stored in the liver and maintaining an electrical charge between the inside of the cell membrane and the outside – this is referred to as the resting membrane potential which is the normal state that cell needs to be in to maintain ideal cellular volume and optimum function. Magnesium supports potassium in the process of maintaining this electrical charge by facilitating the production of ATP (adenosine triphosphate) in the mitochondria (the power stations) of the cell. ATP provides the energy to drive sodium/potassium pumps that sit inside your cell membrane pumping two potassium ions into the cell and three sodium ions out of the cell.

Why is the sodium/potassium pump important? Well, if the pump didn’t work properly then too much sodium would find its way into the cell. Wherever sodium goes water will follow and the cell would swell. If this was not quickly rectified the cell would burst and die. The problem with sodium is that if we have too much of it in our diets it will more aggressively find its way into our cells and push potassium out of the cell causing an imbalance.

Ultimately the four main electrolytes should be organised so that magnesium and potassium sit inside the cell and sodium and calcium are in the extracellular spaces. Calcium is also found in the bones and the blood where it helps to maintain blood sugar levels. The magnesium and the potassium in effect help the cell to detoxify and maintain an alkaline environment for cellular reactions to take place and, of course as mentioned, magnesium helps that cell to produce energy. If the cell gets too acidic, however, calcium is mobilised (often from the bones) to try and buffer this acidity. The only problem is that this will caused the cell to become more hardened and contracted, the opposite effect to magnesium which causes the cell to relax.

You may read the above discussion about what is going on at a cellular level and wonder how it affects you. The important thing to remember is that you are a reflection of the 70 – 100 trillion cells in your body – the macrocosm is just a bigger version of the microcosm. If your cells are swollen, contracted, acidic and low in energy then guess what, so are you! The flip side to this is if we ensure our magnesium (and potassium) levels are good and that we are in a position to absorb these minerals then our cells will be vibrant, relaxed, alkaline and healthy and so will we!
To put your cells in the best position to receive nutrients such as magnesium and potassium you need to work on ensuring that you cell membranes are open enough to allow for their efficient movement into the cell. You can do this by ensuring you are well hydrated and that you have a good intake of omega 3 essential fatty acids.

Initially, the best way to alkalise your body (i.e. increase your intake of magnesium and potassium) is to get this through diet. It’s simple, just eat more fruit and veg, particularly leafy greens. Yes other things like cashew nuts, almonds, some non-glutinous grains and sea vegetables also contain good amounts but just eat them in moderation. The main focus should be on good old fashioned fruit and veg. Occasional green juices are also a great way of making these nutrients more bio-available to the body. Needless to say aim to get as much of your food intake from organic sources.
Traditionally I would encourage people not to supplement with potassium as it can create an aggressive cleanse on a cellular level but you can supplement with magnesium.

You need to build up your intake of magnesium slowly though if you are supplementing or if you use magnesium chloride salts in the bath. I’ve had clients who have put 500g of salts in their bath and they have gone into a big cleanse. Likewise, early on in my own personal healing journey I have had too many green juices combined with magnesium citrate supplements and also gone into a cleanse because the magnesium has started to create a big detox on a cellular level. Imagine the magnesium going into the cell and providing the energy for the cell to have a good clear out. Those toxins need to follow a route out of the body (the Elimination Cycle – refer to my Got Water, Got Life blog). If there are any blockages along the way then this will produce cleansing symptoms which can vary from swollen glands, headaches, achy joints and muscles, nausea, diarrhoea and skin breakouts (itchy skin, eczema, rashes) amongst others depending on where in the Elimination Cycle you are stuck.

The best supplemental form of magnesium to use is magnesium chloride. Bronze Age Nutrition do the oral drops and we sell the magnesium chloride salts that you can use in the bath. Soaking in a magnesium chloride bath is a great way to get magnesium straight into your tissues but for daily intake of magnesium especially for your digestive functions you should take it orally.

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Got water, Got Life!

When we are talking about water and health there are three things that are super important to us as human beings.

One is the fact that water is a moving medium that carries things from one place to another and enables chemical reactions to take place. “It’s all about flow, it’s all about fluidity” is what I say to my clients when talking about water and its importance in the body. The thing that distinguishes us between something that is alive and something that is dead, is movement. We flow, we move, we dance, we are alive! Water is the embodiment of this, there is nothing that seems more alive than a river in full flow. We are just a reflection of what is going on in nature. When flow of water is restricted in nature we describe it as stagnant. When flow of water in the body is restricted or stops we also become stagnant. You can literally smell people who don’t have enough flow and fluidity in their body!

This brings me nicely onto the second important thing – water needs to be readily available to us because we need plenty of it. When you look at the body on a cellular level, those cells are made up of 70% water in the body and in the brain this figure is around 80%. The need for us to be hydrated is paramount! If we are continuously dehydrated by things such as stress, lack of water intake and dehydrating foods and drinks such as salty foods, sugar, caffeine, alcohol, glutinous grains (we need alot of water to push the sticky proteins in these grains through our intestine) and high protein intake (see hydrolysis below – it takes alot of water to digest protein), the body will go into a state of panic. Barbara Wren refers to this as “dehydration alert” whereby cells will take action to preserve themselves by holding onto water.

Combine this with a lack of essential fatty acids (in particular omega 3), which are fundamental in keeping cell membranes open, and you have a cell that is stagnant which is contrary the ideal environment required for that cell to function optimally i.e. where water can flow in and out easily. It’s about flow, it’s about fluidity, it really is!!!!
In the body, water is used in the breakdown of food during digestion (hydrolysis). It acts as a medium for these broken down nutrients and enables the blood to flow smoothly to deliver them to the cells. Water carries the toxic by-products of metabolism out of the cells which are then dumped into our lymphatic system. The fluidity of our lymph depends on the presence of enough water. This lymph, as long as it is fluid enough, is moved by our musculo-skeletal pump and a series of one way valves which take it to the main lymph duct known as the thoracic duct. From here the lymph drips into the left subclavian vein into the blood. The blood then carries the toxic lymph to our liver which then extracts them and converts them into less toxic substances for removal from the body mostly through the bile. To produce good quality bile you need about 1.5 litres of water a day before you even start thinking about other water requirements in the body. This bile then eventually finds its way into the duodenum (the first part of the small intestine) where it also assists with the digestion of food and the movement of undigested material through the intestines so that it can be eliminated.

Water too assists with the process of elimination as it is absorbed by soluble fibre which makes your stools soft, well formed and easy to pass. Flesh fruits, root vegetables and cooked grains all contain soluble fibre. This process is essential because if we don’t eliminate quickly enough toxins will be reabsorbed which defeats the object of the whole elimination cycle – cell to lymph to blood to liver to intestines to exit.

Some substances produced during the breakdown of proteins are eliminated via a different route. Urea is produced when the liver removes the nitrogenous part of amino acids (incidentally, the more proteins we ingest the more urea we produce) and uric acid which is the result of the nucleus of old cells being broken down. Both of these substances are removed from the blood by the kidneys and excreted in the urine. Water is again a key requirement for this process to work well. If there is enough water flowing through the kidneys you might think that any old water will do, which brings us to the third thing – the water that we take into the body should be clean and pure. Why? Well, if that water is carrying toxic substances then these will be carried into the body and contribute to it’s already toxic load including toxins that we ingest through the air that we breath, the food that we eat and even what comes into contact with the skin.

Tap water for example has been treated using aluminium sulphate (used as a coagulant during the water treatment process) and contains chlorine (used as an antibacterial agent) both of which are toxic to the body. Add to this possible lead contamination from old water pipes, herbicides, pesticides and nitrates that find their way into water sources and in some areas fluoride (a by-product from the aluminium smelting industry and known toxin) which is actually put into the water by certain water authorities in the UK. Even bottled water contains impurities including xenoestrogens that act as endocrine disruptors in the body.

The easiest way to get clean water is to install a water filter in your home that includes activated carbon which will remove the majority of heavy metals and chlorine from your water. The ultimate in filtration would be a reverse osmosis system which has a 95% plus removal rate depending on the substance being removed.
Don’t be rushing off thinking that you have to start drinking gallons of water. In fact, drinking too much water can be dangerous as it can dilute your electrolytes. Here are some simple steps you can take to start rehydrating your body:

Start your day by having about a pint of warm water with the juice of one organic lemon – it will immediately hydrate you, act as a tonic for your liver, balance your blood sugar and prepare your digestive juices for your breakfast – allow about half an hour before you eat

  • Also drink warm water half an hour before your lunch and dinner to prepare your digestive juices
  • Don’t drink with meals, it dilutes your digestive juices – it’s like shutting the stable door after the horse has bolted!
  • Drink water little and often during the day in between meals – don’t guzzle water, it will just make you pee like a racehorse (ok, that’s my last horse reference).
  • Aim to drink about 2 to 3 litres of water spaced out over the day – this won’t happen overnight just work up to it. Your requirement for water will increase depending on how stressed you are and how much exercise you get.
  • Reduce dehydrating food/drink – have less tea, coffee, sugary drinks, animal protein and glutinous grains (wheat being the worst)
  • Eat more hydrating foods. Dead simple, just eat more fresh fruit and veg!
  • Start to increase the amount of omega 3 fatty acids in your diet which allow your cells to hold water appropriately. Preferably get them from a vegan source such as flax, chia and hemp seeds, winter squash, leafy greens and berries – if a nutritionist identifies that your omega 3 levels are really low then you may need to supplement with a fish oil or vegan alternative but make sure that you find a good quality source such as Viridian.