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Slightly Spoiled; a Story of Allergies and Homeopathy

Joette Calabrese,HMC,CCH,RSHom
Published in Wise Traditions, Winter 2008, “Nutrition for Mental and Emotional Wellness”

WTW2008She was one of those women who had everything: a loving husband, beautiful, healthy children, a stylish home and intelligence to boot. She considered her life in order and often pondered it with satisfaction. She was slightly spoiled.

It wasn't always that way, though. Only fifteen years earlier she was single and suffering from debilitating environmental illness; a type of allergy. These were not the sneezy-sniffley-kind of allergies; they were the overwhelming, near-life-threatening sort. Her life was bulging with medical drama and constant searching for answers. “Why”, she would whimper, “is this happening to me?” The answers were vague and confusing. From doctor to doctor she traveled, only to find her inescapable illness deepening with each new medication and procedure.

Then one day, purely by accident, a friend mentioned that a relative had visited a homeopath which resulted in a cure of his hay fever. Intriguing, she considered. It was an easy decision. She dragged herself into the initial visit only half believing anything could save her from her life of chronic suffering. Yet, she was struck by the first meeting. Impressively, the homeopath spent nearly two hours, completely focused on what she had to say. “Everything about you is important” clarified the homeopath, “even the position you sleep in”. If nothing else, it was refreshing to have someone listen with genuine interest.

She left the homeopath's office with renewed hope, because it was the first time anyone had explained what was going on with her immune system. The homeopath told her that each medication she had been taking was concealing a symptom that was not only causing more serious ones, but was suppressing her body's ability to adjust to her allergic condition. And these symptoms were not the culprits, but were like gifts since they directed the homeopath to finding the remedy that precisely suited her. Once the correct remedy was determined, her sufferings would no longer be veiled, but slowly melt away one by one. It might take some time, warned the homeopath, but over months, energy would be gained, foggy headedness diminished, obstructed breathing and sleep restored. Most importantly, she would be able to go out in public again; something that was lost over a year ago due to allergens that she had become so sensitive to.

The day after she took the first round of the remedy was remarkable. It so happened that she had hoped she could eek out a day of one simple task. She simply wanted to organize a file she was compiling to build a case for social security benefits since she was no longer capable of work. She had grown accustomed to measuring her time and tasks according to what her symptoms allowed. Most days were relegated to about an hour or two of productive time while the remainder of the day was spent napping, peppered with asthma and anxiety attacks. This day was different. Instead of the expected, she found herself organizing other files too, and even wandering into the kitchen and making soup from scratch. This was a once relished task that was also left behind due to her mounting fatigue. Yet, here she was working and providing herself with a nourishing meal! When she finished lunch, she noticed the pantry needed tidying. Instead of postponing the task as usual, she took it on with renewed gusto. “Hey” she thought, “I remember this feeling…it's the way I used to feel in college; energetic, capable and motivated.” It was then that she realized she hadn't felt well for probably a decade.

After the last jar of beans was wiped and returned to the shelf, she scanned the room for another undertaking. Maybe I'll just start a load of laundry, she considered. And so the day went: task after task accomplished with ease, unlike any other day for what seemed a life time. That night, as she laid her head on the pillow she took pleasure in reflecting on the accomplishments of the day and only hoped this had something to do with the homeopathic remedy. “Nah, just a fluke” and fell deeply asleep. Yet, upon awakening the next morning, despite the cold, damp weather, a factor that had always worsened her asthma, she prepared herself for another productive day. This happened day after day for nearly a fortnight, when finally she experienced an asthma attack. She wept a little, too; more out of grief that her new well being might be coming to an end. Then something uncommon happened. Just when the asthma was coming to the usual breathless pitch, it abruptly stopped. And instead of the telltale exhaustion and residual burning in her lungs, there was a sense of calm. If it hadn't been for the fact that it was nearly midnight, she would have phoned her homeopath. Instead, she jotted down her experiences of the last two weeks to report at their next meeting.

And so it went. Day after day, week after week, her asthma appeared only occasionally, but now shorter, now less dramatic. Her bowel movements comfortably softened, became painless and more regular. The prescription medications she had depended on had now been eliminated; so had the over-the-counter ones. She began experiencing the life she had always envisioned. After a few more visits to the homeopath, her menses, that had been irregular and debilitating, was also brought to normalcy and she stopped taking naps altogether. This was about the time she met her future husband. They were introduced at a mutual friend's house; the one who had earlier shared the homeopath's name.

Innocently, the friend wore perfume, a previous trigger to her asthma, yet none of this made our heroine ill. Instead, she was particularly clever and charming that night, which caught his attention. No more fogginess and anxiety. Her intelligence sparkled.

Their marriage has been blessed with four children; each of whom was taken to her now beloved homeopath for any ills. Conventional medications are not considered in her or her family's lives. It's homeopathy for all of them. Asthma is a thing of the past. So are the fatigue, constipation, anxiety, foggy thinking and menstrual disorders. She has a good life, rich with the blessings of a family and vigorous health. It only looks from the outside like a privileged life was bestowed upon her. Perhaps she has higher than average expectations, hence, the ability to bring them to fruition. There is an assumed excellence that comes from abundant health that she and her family have come to enjoy. Indeed, homeopathy has spoiled her.

Shameful Sugar Cravings

Joette Calabrese,HMC,CCH,RSHom
Published in Wise Traditions, Spring 2009, “The Cod Liver Oil Debate”

WTsp2009Liz had a dirty little secret. Well, maybe not so dirty to others, but to Liz it was embarrassing so she kept it hidden from her family and friends. Sometimes she even denied it to herself.

Liz was a gourmet chef, working in one of the finest destination spas east of the Mississippi. She took pride in her reputation for having a keen appreciation of gourmet sensibility and nutrition, yet she had a personal vice. A clandestine act. A shameful indulgence that, if discovered, could taint her professionally. . . well, she thought so anyway. Liz was addicted to Twinkies.

This was no ordinary craving. Liz bought Twinkies by the case. . . literally. She had them stashed above the Viking refrigerator in the spa's expansive kitchen, in the glove compartment of her car for snacking during commutes, and at home she concealed them in the bedroom in her underwear drawer. She indulged in her secret sin in the mornings, when she felt overworked, and worst of all when she was exhausted, which was happening more frequently of late.

At first she saw the irony, and even humor in her choice of addiction, but her weight had been increasing steadily for the last few years and she was shaky when she tried to abstain. Recently her heart had been doing acrobatic flips in her now ample chest. It was no longer a laughing matter. Liz recognized she needed help but disdained drugs.

Instead, she turned to homeopathy, a medical method her physician grandfather had used when she was growing up in Germany. She learned of a homeopath of fine repute from one of the investors of the spa. He told her that this homeopath had helped him with his pre-diabetic condition. So she scheduled an appointment for herself.

When Liz confessed to the homeopath her awkward sugar addiction, she fully expected a snicker. But the homeopath didn't find it odd. She merely listened compassionately as though she, too, had experienced the same covert compulsion.

“My intellect tells me no, but my stomach and salivary glands give me the OK,” Liz explained. She also described her sleep habits, the details of the indigestion she sometimes suffered and at one point revealed the nightmares she used to experience. All of these features of her personality were of interest to the homeopath since homeopathic treatment is tailored to the unique aspects of the person as a whole, rather than to the disease. The practitioner explained to Liz that the remedy chosen for her would be specific to her, represented by her characteristics and symptoms. The homeopath added that despite Liz's best efforts, she might indeed find it difficult to abort the sugar cravings without a little help. Homeopathy has a reputation for stimulating the body's ability to bring itself to homeostasis, so as the pancreas becomes balanced, the cravings can diminish, clarified the homeopath. Your body will find its best way to respond.

“What way could that be?” Liz wondered.

Liz went home uplifted with renewed hope. The following day after eating three packages of her secret snack and a cup of cappuccino she started taking the remedy, Argentum nitricum. Then, she permitted herself the usual ration after lunch and two more upon retiring that night.

The next day was a repeat of her routine, but by day three she found herself longing for a refreshing drink instead of the Twinkies. This was noteworthy since she rarely experienced thirst. At first she considered chocolate milk, but resisted and instead found a glass of kombucha to be quite satisfying. “Hmm,” she thought, “I wonder if it's the remedy making my body respond in a new way as the homeopath described?”

That night she settled into bed, counting. She had grown accustomed to measuring her day by the number of Twinkies she'd consumed and she realized that she had eaten only one packet over the entire day. “I'll just watch as this unfolds,” she reflected.

This routine repeated day after day until a week passed and she noticed she hadn't eaten more than one package of the little morsels in all that time! She also couldn't help noticing that her fatigue had faded and her thinking was more brisk, the way it had been in culinary school.

Two weeks into the first dose of Argentum nitricum, Liz discovered that her waistband was loose and her hands no longer ached when she worked the cool dough on the marble surface. But an unexpected dividend was that her heart had stopped fluttering. She had nearly become accustomed to this alarming sensation many afternoons while slicing vegetables.

“How could this be?” she wondered, as she sipped her newly beloved kombucha. “I've eaten these all my life. Could they really have been the cause of all these maladies? And have all these changes really occurred after only weeks of the little homeopathic pills?!”

It took a loss of ten pounds before she was thoroughly convinced of the reformation. The evidence was clear. . . . Liz appeared no longer to be a Twinkie junkie! It was at this time that she made a prominent decision in her life. She threw out all the concealed little cakes. The cubbies in the big kitchen, the stash in the car, and even the store in the undies drawer were emptied once and for all. No remorse, no longing, no Twinkies. Liz was satisfied . . . she was gaining the health and figure she had always longed for.

And the other part of this story? Liz was so taken by her transformation that she implemented a sweet-free day at the spa once each week. On that day, sparkling kombucha is served in tall, frosted glasses with a twist of lime, instead of dessert. It's promoted as a refreshing aid and balance to digestion. And what a splash it has made among the employees and patrons! They affectionately call it “Fizzy Lizzy.”


Unlike other medical modalities, homeopathy is a method of treatment that is specific to the individual, rather than to a pathology. It is holisitic as it incorporates the aspects of the entire person, including the way the sufferer thinks.

Argentum nitricum is a powerful yet gentle remedy with a reputation for aiding people who suffer an extreme addiction to sweets and who show a marked inability to resist impulses in general. This can be seen as a desire to succumb to temptations on both an emotional as well as physical level. Since homeopathy treats the person and not the disease, when choosing this remedy for sugar addictions, these other components must also be considered. Otherwise, the remedy choice will be incorrect and the desired results will fail to materialize.

Interestingly, other remedies also address sweet addictions. Sulphur, for example, is useful for someone who also experiences sweet cravings, yet people who need it are those who suffer discomfort from heat accompanied by odorous perspiration. Had Liz been experiencing menopausal hot flashes attended by perspiration as well as her sugar addiction, the remedy choice might well have been Sulphur. But here is an interesting twist to the story and remedy choice. A person who is keenly aware of trying to avoid an ordeal is one who ought be considered for the choice ofArgentum nitricum. This is because this idiosyncrasy is a specific characteristic of this remedy picture. And it has been historically shown to be useful for many maladies associated with this personality trait. Other sugar addicts might not have considered this an issue, yet Liz found her addiction to be embarrassing and even shameful. One who might require Sulphur wouldn't have this concern. Hence, only Argentum nitricum would do for Liz.

These considerations underscore just how person-specific the remedies tend to be. This is the reason remedy choices for chronic illness ought to be made by a seasoned, credentialed homeopath.

Having said this, however, homeopathy indeed lends itself to self-prescribing in situations such as colds, indigestion and other self-limiting maladies. For this reason, the study of homeopathy is a perfect match for those who enjoy medical freedom via personal responsibility.

Thyroid and Homeopathic Iodine

Joette Calabrese,HMC,CCH,RSHom
Published in Wise Traditions, Summer 2009, “Treating Low Metabolism”

WTsu2009Margaret was uncommonly dazzling, charismatic and constitutionally unfit for frumpy clothes. Nothing she wore matched exactly, yet it all worked together quite nicely because it was draped on her body with her patrician sensibilities.

She summered at Martha's Vineyard, her long tan legs attracting onlookers. . . mostly men, but women, too. I can't say in public what the men would think but I'm sure Margaret knew. It gave her permission to flounce her hair incautiously. The result was a kind of male chaos that fell in her wake. She was the sort of woman who reveled in her ever-changing relationships, amending them simply because the challenge was entertaining.

But then, one weekend after a friend's opening in Soho, something snapped. Instead of her usual deftness in her daily routine, she began to experience weariness. It moderated her usual steady vitality with a chronic longing for naps. Before long, she also recognized that her easy confidence and flippant air had dwindled and was being replaced by a diminished, subdued version of her old self. And she began to lose more hair than she cared to think about.

At first, her symptoms were mild, but by the time she entered the doctor's office, she was agitated and alarmed. “It feels like I have a chronic touch of the flu, and worse, I've put on twenty pounds.” The latter symptom troubled her the most.

The doctor considered hypothyroidism and subsequent tests indicated Margaret's TSH (thyroid stimulating hormone) was indeed elevated, so he advised a medication. This wouldn't cure her, of course, but it would manage the problem.

Margaret began to question the decision to follow through since the side effects were written in the drug pack she was handed, albeit in print so small she literally needed a magnifying glass to make out the words. But, it was indeed as clear as day…anxiety, mood swings, hair loss, weight gain, chest pain, irregular heartbeat, shortness of breath, seizures. She already had suffered some of these symptoms and the drug only promised more!

Next Margaret visited a psychiatrist, because of the angst she was experiencing. He too proposed drugs. “No thanks,” she thought. She could have submitted without a struggle and simply taken the prescriptions, but that wasn't Margaret's style. In fact, even her best friend asked her, “What's wrong with taking medicine?” “No,” Margaret insisted, “I must find a bona fide solution.”

And so Margaret wore her hair in a sweeping fashion that concealed the loss that honestly only she noticed. She was driven by her innate tenacity to unearth an alternative solution. A colleague who had been relieved of thyroid nodules with a special homeopathic preparation suggested the name of her reputable homeopath.

So, Margaret scheduled a phone consultation because the homeopath lived two states away.

After this initial consultation, Margaret was comforted. She was not told her hypothyroid condition would be cured, but the homeopath put it in a different way. “Your body is responding to an imbalance which causes symptoms. We will use the symptoms to determine which homeopathic remedy is best suited to antidote or address your specific imbalance. Once the energy of the illness is met by the energy of the remedy, it will be unnecessary for the body to react. Instead, the reactions to the disease or symptoms will be antidoted.”

Margaret was inspired by the word “antidote” and within a week from taking the remedy Iodum, her fatigue began to fade. “Is this iodine?” she asked the homeopath. The answer she received was fascinating. The homeopath explained that we know that iodine is key to thyroid health, but to use it in gross form can sometimes be imprudent. Instead, in homeopathic formula, which is greatly diluted according to a specific mathematical procedure, any problems relating to iodine are eliminated, leaving only beneficial results. Since homeopathy is a medical paradigm used the world over, including European hospitals and clinics, and by homeopathic MDs, we have plenty of research to conclude that this method not only has merit, but is safe.

Margaret didn't really care about the studies; her focus was on how well she began to feel. First she noticed that there was no longer a tangled mass on her hair brush. Then, her zeal returned. This happened within the first month of taking the homeopathic preparation. However, the most remarkable restoration was when she observed the pounds slowly melting and the fatigue eliminated.

Symptom by symptom, the disease seemed to dissolve. It was so natural and not unlike the way she felt before being struck with hypothyroid disease. Months later, her thyroid hormone was again measured and the proof was revealed. Her levels were indeed within the range of normal! It was about this time that, while at the theatre, she inadvertently ran into Alphonso, a handsome Italian friend from back in grad school. He squeezed her hand and whispered, “Sprezzatura!”

When she got home that night, she paged through her Italian dictionary and was delighted to discover that the beautiful word means “the art of nonchalance in effortless elegance.” Ahhh … the confirmation that her life was back.

Homeopathic Remedies for Thyroid Problems

The link between iodine and the thyroid gland is well established; therefore, it is no surprise that homeopathic iodine has been used homeopathically for many decades. In its original state, elemental iodine can actually cause thyroid pathology. This is why in the much diluted methods of homeopathic preparation it can instead rouse the body to address the very problem it can sometimes cause. This capacity reveals the very essence of homeopathy, which is ruled by the law “like cures like.”

In the case of Margaret's sufferings, this remedy was chosen because it suited not only her specific symptoms, but her personality as well. What caught the homeopath's attention, in this case, was her uncharacteristic weight gain and subdued behavior that was so unlike her when in health. Since the need for Iodum is characterized by these features, it proved to be just the right fit for Margaret.

However, Margaret had a colleague for whom the remedy choice was quite different. A common remedy for thyroid nodules, whether accompanied by hypothyroidism or hyperthyroidism, is Sepia. But again, the choice of Sepia depends on the entirety of the person suffering the problem. Margaret's colleague had just had a baby when she developed her thyroid issues. This put her in a reproductive state that would need to be considered for the totality of symptoms to match. For example, she too experienced weight gain, but it was accompanied by mood swings and sleeplessness. Since Margaret's hormones were not those of a new mother, Sepia would have been unsuitable for her.

A man suffering from hypo- or hyperthyroidism would indeed be subject to the same differentiating criteria, but the hallmark of his sufferings might include chronic perspiration of the head, easy weight gain that was particularly flabby and an overall sluggish disposition. There might also be anxiety and an overwhelmed sensation from his many responsibilities. This would point squarely in the direction of Calcarea carbonica, a homeopathic remedy most noted for these symptoms. Thus homeopathy is person-specific, not disease-specific and anything less would be a mediocre, polyester, one-size-fits-all choice. In the quest for authentic health, this will never do.

Homeopathic Treatment for Influenza

Joette Calabrese,HMC,CCH,RSHom
Published in Wise Traditions, Fall 2009, “Malocclusions and Facial Developments”

WTf2009Yesterday, in the house down the block, the Grecos' thirteen-year-old son Anthony got sick. The family was setting up the annual autumn neighborhood party in their yard and Anthony couldn't join in. He was dreadfully weak, had a whistley wheeze, and every breath he took was painful. His eyes were drawn, and he was pale and nauseated. This was one of those illnesses that could easily turn into a bad case of the flu, bronchitis or worse. As a child, his mom had suffered frequent bouts of influenza that had turned into pneumonia. His dad, too, had similar episodes as a youngster. More important, the word on the news was that the influenza season was at hand.

But there is something different in Anthony's life from that of many other children on his block. He has homeopathy as his method of healthcare. In fact, as a result, he has never ingested an aspirin, Tylenol or antibiotic in his thirteen years of life. He is a drug-free kid.

When Anthony was about four, he began catching every cold and flu that was going around. That's when his parents called a homeopath. The homeopath explained to his mom that when someone young or old has frequent bouts of the flu, pneumonia or even colds, that the method of addressing it is to use a particular type of homeopathic remedy called a nosode before the onslaught of an illness. It gently and safely stimulates the body to be able to withstand contagion.

The homeopath recommended one for Anthony that was specific to his medical history and it halted the sinus infections, frequent bronchitis and lingering low level flu-like symptoms that used to plague Anthony. Now his mom gives it to him once each year in the fall. Characteristically, the remedy was chosen specifically for Anthony. Homeopathy is wonderfully individualized.

Had Anthony's parents adhered to the dictates of conventional medicine when he most recently fell ill, he would've been dragged to the doctor's office for an antibiotic, analgesic, inhaler and perhaps a steroid just as the party was gathering for the celebration at their home. Like a cascading row of dominoes, if this illness had been treated with conventional medications, it might have eventually advanced to a future pathology. Instead, because Anthony had taken his homeopathic early in the season his mom only needed to give him a little boost with another remedy, Influenzinum 30C. And with the threat of the flu in their area, she was prepared by giving each member of the family a few doses of Influenzinum 30C as a prophylactic.

Anthony's mom also knows that homeopathy has been shown to not only protect against flu in advance of its symptoms, but to resolve the episode at hand and even minimizes the chance of it recurring soon. If it indeed reappears, it does so with less gusto, doesn't last as long, and her child will have profited by this method of care. That's because she has observed in her children that a developmental leap occurs after a mild illness. Last time it was when Anthony was struggling with math. After that brief, well spent illness liberated by a few doses of the correct homeopathic remedy, he conquered his long division with ease.

Homeopaths as well as astute parents have through the centuries understood that colds, the flu and other childhood illnesses are a requisite prelude to the normal stages of childhood development. That is, illness presses the child to meet the trial of the illness itself, including the emotional challenge that accompanies it. Growth always follows. This ushers the child into the next intellectual, emotional and physical developmental stage. By using conventional medications, this development can be stifled because the disease is not allowed to resolve from within, but is merely suppressed by artificial means. Conversely, it's not uncommon after the use of a homeopathic remedy that the child not only conquers the illness but the parents report that “it seems he has just grown up.” Indeed! Isn't that the progress we want for our children?

Smart mom. This time, after three doses of Influenzinum, Anthony slept twelve hours straight into the next morning. When he woke, he reported an improvement of seventy five percent. Great! Nevertheless, his mom knew it was not over yet. More of the same remedy would be administered, but now less frequently. Two days after this now rather mild illness, Anthony was be back to his thirteen-year-old antics.

Contrast Anthony's experience with that of Jacob, who lives in the blue house down the road. His mother tells Anthony's mom that Jacob has had bronchitis twice this year, not unlike his dad who has always been susceptible to these kinds of infections. Jacob's been on a daily dose of antibiotics since two months ago. The doctor said the bronchitis was from the flu that was going around at that time. But now he has skin rashes, stomach aches and chronic constipation. He sees the doctor monthly for adjustments to his inhaler because it no longer works so well. And it appears that Jacob has developed asthma. Not only has this eighth grader lost time in school, but his mom mentioned he was struggling with reading of late.

Why are these two boys so different? Both families have a history of respiratory illness, both have been exposed to the same flu bugs, and both families live typical American lifestyles, yet how can one so quickly resolve the illnesses that come his way while the other struggles daily? Why, it's the method of care of course! Health is not bestowed randomly. Anthony has an immune system that is strong because his mother has utilized homeopathy to its fullest and doesn't allow the introduction of drugs in her home.

Each illness overcome with the use of homeopathic medicine is an opportunity to strengthen the immune system. Homeopathy is rational, intelligent, with no side effects in the present or the far future, and is profoundly curative.

Two boys. Two families. Two different approaches to health. Which house would you choose?

Home Influenza Protocol

Homeopathy has a reputation worldwide for stimulating the immune system to set it on the right course. For folks who are prone to colds, the flu, sinus infections, ear infections and the like, it is a wise consideration to naturally arouse the immune system so that it no longer results in these pathologies.

However, even without this kind of personal care from a homeopath, there is still plenty that can be done. As a gentle yet frequently successful prophylactic for influenza, the following is the protocol that has been shown to often halt deeper pathology:

At the first word by the authorities of an impending influenza epidemic, each family member can take Influenzinum 30 C, four times in one day, repeated weekly until the threat is over or up to a month. Then one dose can be taken monthly for the duration of the flu season. This will often eliminate the flu altogether but if it still hits home, it will prove to be a milder version because ofInfluenzinum‘s protection.

Meanwhile, at the very first sign of influenza or if there has been exposure to anyone with any respiratory symptoms during flu season, one dose of Influenzinum 30C, followed by one doseOscillococcinum 30C, eight to twelve hours later is a well known protocol. This process should be repeated for three or four days, depending on the seriousness of the presenting illness. If started early enough this procedure will live up to its sterling reputation, particularly during the cold and wet season. Further protection can be achieved by working with your homeopath before an epidemic to individualize and address immunity more fully.

For more detailed information on how to protect yourself from influenza and also treat it, go to homeopathyworks.net and click on You Too Can Protect From the Flu. To purchase Influenzinum30C and Oscillococcinum 30C, contact your local health food store, or our office at (716) 941-1045.

Homeopathy for Cancer Anxiety

Joette Calabrese,HMC,CCH,RSHom
Published in Wise Traditions, Winter 2009, “Holistic Cancer Treatment”

WTW2010Christopher likes to keep active and stretch his creative muscle. He's a landscape architect with a business that's vital, like him. Today, in fact, he completed the design work on what he considered the flagship of his career: a city court building in the upside of town. He felt swollen with pride; satisfied and light-hearted. But it wasn't long ago that Chris wasn't so hearty. Instead, he was burdened with fears and anxieties. It was a maddening way to live. . . those nights of anguish and terror. Chris suffered a weighty fear of cancer that panicked him right out of bed nearly every midnight.

It's not as though he didn't have reason to fret. Both of his parents had been stricken with cancer and his father had succumbed to it only one year earlier. But you'll understand why these thoughts were so plaguing to Chris when a deeper glimpse of his family tree is revealed.

Three first cousins died of cancer; one of breast, one of lung, and another of leukemia. It was also revealed that his maternal grandmother had died of breast cancer, and her paternal grandfather's fatal cancer was of the throat. “Yikes!” Chris first thought. “What's wrong with my family?” Then, “What's wrong with me?”

These threatening feelings began to arrange themselves in his mind not merely on a regular basis, but they became a species of a morbid background song. They pursued him like noxious elevator music in a discordant nightmare. Each new blemish was agonizing. Every unusual ache brought certainty that death was near. Chris was aware of a mind-body connection and that made him feel even worse, for he knew he could potentially bring his fears to fruition. Or at least that's what he'd read. His livelihood was put on hold for awhile—no, actually for months on end while he pursued a new vocation: doctor hopping. He submitted to prostate exams, colonoscopies, x-rays, sonograms, CAT scans and biopsies. Ouch! Burp! Ick! But nothing appeased the torture of his angst. “It's only a matter of time,” he'd agonize. Then one day Chris was reading a magazine in a waiting room while waiting to meet with a psychiatrist for his disturbing attacks. There was an article about how it was possible to become pro-active in disallowing chronic illness to occur, particularly cancer. Chris's meeting with the psychiatrist was nothing more than a legalized drug arrangement, but it didn't really matter because it was the article in the waiting room that turned his head. And it was with only the publication and jammed it in his pocket on the way out of the office.

Later, over a beer, Chris pored over the methods expounded in the exposé that might help in his quest to remain cancer free. “Come on, come on,” he impatiently scanned the suggestions that were all too familiar. “Amalgam removal, regular tests and, and. . . ” Then his eyes fell upon the word homeopathy. He had known of it from the time he had studied in England in high school. The family he lived with had a homeopath who had treated their son after a diagnosis of colon cancer. The boy underwent surgery to remove a tumor and then was treated with homeopathy afterwards to keep the cancer from returning. Their homeopathic doctor as well as the surgeon agreed that this was the best way to shield their son. That was over twenty-five years ago. The moment Chris got home he emailed his English family to see how everyone was doing. And “Yes, Edward was fine! No, no cancer and yes, he still sees a homeopath regularly. It's his strategy,” reported his now elderly mum. Chris turned this over in his mind for days. Strategy. A cancer preventing tactic. That's what I want! He called his chiropractor who had connections with the best holistic practitioners to see whether he knew of a homeopath. He readily recommended one who had helped him with his allergies. “Between chiropractic, my raw milk, and homeopathy, my strategy is in order and I'm free of my debilitating chronic illness.”

There's that word again! Chris couldn't dial the homeopath fast enough.

For nearly a year he met with his homeopath every few months or so. He took remedies such as Nux vomica, Carcinosin and Thuja. Now thoughts of cancer no longer plague him. His “vital force” has been girded. The homeopath had used this term and Chris understood it to mean that his immune system was showing signs of vigor.

How does he know this? Well, everything in his body is running smoothly now. His bowels, which were never quite right, began to function daily, and indigestion of fifteen years' standing was resolved. The nightmares and sleep were set straight, and even the warts that had occupied his trunk and extremities had dissolved. But the most weighty transformation was the decade-long anxiety that was noticeably absent from his life. Not just minimized, but abolished from his thoughts. Now Chris is free to pursue his challenging career, enjoy his raw milk, and allow himself plenty of time to dig about in his own garden. Unlike those in his family who suffered before him, he's got a resolute firmness in his step and a lifelong plan: homeopathy as a sound strategy!


Homeopathy has a worldwide reputation for working deeply to aid against chronic illness by righting imbalances in the body as well as the mind. In tandem with sound nutritional practices, chiropractic and other quality healing modalities, homeopathy rights the wrongs and minimizes the chances for chronic illness to develop. The English Royal Family has used homeopathic physicians (as well as drunk raw milk!) for generations. This is perchance why Chris's English family could readily benefit from the fruits of both surgery and homeopathy. Perhaps more interestingly, the Vatican has also considered homeopathy the choice of care for the Popes. Indeed, several homeopathic physicians to the Popes have been awarded the Papal Cross of Distinction, one of the most honored awards bestowed by the Vatican. So Europe has known for centuries what Americans are rediscovering… homeopathy is a medical discipline worthy of our attention. The remedies Chris's homeopath suggested weren't specifically for cancer or even anxiety, but expressly for Chris. The same would hold true for Prince Charles or Pope Benedict because that's the way homeopathy works. It treats the person, not the disease. Is it no wonder that Chris can find comfort in his revitalized state? No longer does he needlessly worry about life because he now has a reliable and individualized life-long health strategy.

Travis the Teenager Loves Nightshades Belladonna for Illness

Joette Calabrese,HMC,CCH,RSHom
Published in Wise Traditions, Spring 2010, “Plants Bite Back”

WTSp2010“Sweet!” swooned Travis, the sixteen year- old, as he rose one morning with renewed strength. Just the night before, he had suffered from a 104-degree fever, thrashing anger and ruthless ear pain. After three doses of the homeopathic remedy Belladonna and much needed sleep, this pale, emotional adolescent was made whole. Since it was Saturday, this meant he would be able to go to his school dance that night. His parents had no reservations about his intentions for the evening. They knew from years of using homeopathy that when the remedy is correct, there is no need for a relapse. Regardless of the intensity of his illness, they recognized that their son had recovered fully.

When properly administered, homeopathy is an unparalleled form of medication. It matters not that it's medically documented, nor that it's accepted as the norm by medical doctors in England, Germany, France and India. What matters to Travis and to thousands of other teens throughout the world is that it works.

How can something so inexpensive and gentle make such a difference in a high fever, or in any illness? The efficacy of homeopathy has been evidenced in medical journals throughout the world. It has been shown clinically for more than two hundred years to resolve illness such as the one Travis suffered, without side effects and within remarkably short order. These results are to be expected because homeopathy stirs the person's own ability to bring illness to a natural close. If, in the case of Travis's fever, an antibiotic and analgesic had been administered instead, Travis would have experienced a false sense of wellness, propped up by powerful drugs, which have a list of side effects as long as his texting buddy list. For many who are dosed this way, such an illness turns into repeated episodes over a period of months. This is a common outcome in ailments that have been suppressed by conventional pharmaceuticals.

Belladonna, or deadly nightshade, was the remedy Travis's parents chose because his fever was high, his eyes had a glassy look, and his ear pain was severe. And the illness came on with a fury. These are the keynotes of symptoms that need to be present for Belladonna to do its good work. If the fever had been low, accompanied by chills, and presented in an irritable teen, the remedy choice would likely have been Nux vomica. Or if Travis's earache appeared with a medium fever, he was fractious, and with one cheek red while the other pale, he might have been given Chamomilla.

This is how patient-detailed and individual the selection must be. No other medical paradigm incorporates the individual into the remedy choice. In fact, one of the common criticisms of modern medicine is that it treats all of us the same—not so with homeopathy. And perhaps even more important, had Travis's parents succumbed to the conventional medical treatment of their son, the infection might have been subdued, but we would have been left with the angry teen. Is it no wonder that parents who use homeopathy find that their children are often less disruptive to the family after the well chosen remedy is administered? The illness actually becomes an important opportunity to tender the proper remedy for deeper issues.

Homeopathy's role in the health of teens offers more than meets the eye. A medicine that addresses a noteworthy fever and earache as well as the accompanying anger is the role of a dynamic medical model. Yet Travis doesn't need to be convinced of homeopathy's ability to do the job. His only concern is how to persuade his parents to let him borrow the car for the dance.

The scientific statute of “like cures like” is the foundation upon which homeopathy is girded. Homeopathy employs plants that often have poisonous characteristics and transforms them into submissively curative agents. Although the remedy Belladonna is made from deadly nightshade, it's a powerful healing ally. In fact the use of this homeopathic is so effective that even doctors without homeopathic medical training recall its ability to cure such ailments.

Here's the inherent wisdom that makes homeopathy fascinating and profound: the very symptoms that can be caused by a substance in its gross form, as it is found in nature, can be antidoted when formulated into a homeopathic medicine. This is because the method of making the remedy is a mathematical nano-dilution that renders the poisonous effects neutral while allowing the curative aspects to appear. In this way we can use a substance that would be detrimental or even noxious in its gross form, diluted according to the International Homeopathic Pharmacopoeia, and it will become a medicine of vast power. It has the unique ability to restore physical wellbeing as well as balance the emotional or mental aspects of the individual. After all, isn't genuine health the restoration of the entire human—not just the physical aspect? Why of course!

Thus the rogue category of nightshades that might be a trigger for inflammation can actually become a curative agent when properly harnessed. The very cluster of symptoms marked by dilated pupils, red cheeks and high fever is what would be caused by ingesting this poisonous nightshade berry. (The common name for the plant, belladonna, or beautiful lady, refers to the historic cosmetic use of the berry juice to dilate the pupils when instilled in the eye.) Yet because of this cutting edge scientific method and Travis's well-read parents, Belladonna set him on his way to the Saturday night dance. Indeed, Travis might recognize someday the fact that nightshades are scoundrels until tamed by homeopathic methodology. Sweet! Until then, what better way to embrace teenagers and otherwise ill-intentioned plants! Moms like Travis's use Joette Calabrese's book to determine the correct remedy for fevers. Want to know how to do this, too? Joette is offering a FREE download of the fever and ear infection chapter from her book Cure Yourself and Family With Homeopathy. Try your hand at this safe and empowering medicine. Visitwww.homeopathyworks.net and click on “Free Fever Chapter Download.”


The European Committee for Homeopathy (address: Chaussee de Bruxelles, 132, B-1190, Brussels, Belgium) conducted a review of human trials using a Quality of Life questionnaire, and found that in evaluating the treatment of 6,915 patients, 70 percent experienced significant clinical improvement by using homeopathic medicines (this percentage was even higher in children receiving homeopathic medicine) (Van Wassenhoven, 2005). They also found a 75 percent improvement in homeopathic patients (versus 65 percent improvement in conventional medical patients) for hyperactive children. In addition, they found a 67.3 percent improvement in respiratory tract infections (versus 56 percent with conventional treatment). Of note is the fact 22 percent of the patients receiving conventional medical treatment reported side effects, while only 7.8 percent of patients receiving homeopathic treatment reported side effects.

One of the few studies that compared homeopathic treatment versus conventional medical treatment of a specific condition with a single conventional drug versus a single homeopathic drug (a homeopathic formula product) was published in an AMA journal (Weiser, 1998). This study compared results in the treatment of vertigo, with half of the subjects given a homeopathic medicine (a combination of four homeopathic medicines mixed together) and half given a conventional drug (betahistine). The study showed that those given the homeopathic medicine experienced at least as good results as those given the conventional drug, though the homeopathic medicine was considerably safer and less expensive.

Homeopathy for Allergies

Joette Calabrese,HMC,CCH,RSHom
Published in Wise Traditions, Summer 2010, “Holistic Treatment of Allergies”

The Jamisons are country folk with an ample vegetable garden, a small flock of chickens and a few milking goats. Their life, these days is their dream of freedom realized. But it wasn't always this way. Eric and Lucy used to live in Old Town, Chicago. When they first considered the idea of moving to the country, they were apprehensive since Lucy Jamison suffered terribly from pollen allergies as well as from sinus pain caused by weather changes.

Years ago Lucy had surrendered to allergy shots, but found that instead of improving her symptoms, they only worsened. It seemed the list of triggers continued to mount, too. “Every time we eliminate one allergen, another one pops up. I feel like a lab rat,” she said. Yet, Lucy's sufferings nudged Eric and her in new directions. Had it not been for this factor, they wouldn't have pursued self-reliance, self-care and self-empowerment. It was meeting the dead end on the road of conventional medicine that led them to their new life of authentic health.

That's often the way it is. Those who aren't challenged by health issues, simply don't seek alternatives. They're satisfied with the status quo. I guess it takes personal suffering to learn that our well being is dependent on deepened knowledge.

And so the decision to move to the country became the connective tissue that wove into every corner of their lives. Eric and Lucy read and studied. Can you imagine the library they eventually accrued? It contained a mass of books on nutrition, including Weston A Price of course, but also others before and after him. Volumes on the subject of small farming, botanicals, and a bulging section on homeopathy lined the walls. Lucy had found some relief of her symptoms after eliminating wheat and pasteurized dairy, yet a significant fragment of her allergies lingered nevertheless. So she often spent hours schooling herself on the medicine of the educated: homeopathy.

Lucy studied books and audio recordings, and she loved nothing more than to attend health fairs to check out the latest resources. One memorable fair offered information on nutrition, supplements and herbs, but she chose to focus on a lecture by a homeopath. This particular speaker blew her away. The homeopath said that particularly in allergies, homeopathy is the missing link between nutrition and inherited weakness. Further, illness is the result of a violation of nature and its laws. He sited allergy desensitization therapy (or allergy shots) as an example. Lucy certainly knew this first hand. The detailed information the homeopath shared on how to respond to this condition riveted Lucy's attention.

Most important, he presented the case of a woman who suffered from sinus pain that was ushered in by a barometric change. The pain began above the eyes and spread into the sinuses. “Wow! That sounds like the cluster of symptoms I suffer!” she mused. In fact, whenever the barometric pressure changed, or the cottonwoods released their fluff, her sinuses would become so painful she could barely function. The remedy the homeopath mentioned was Kali bichromium. Eric and Lucy had long ago purchased a homeopathy kit that allowed them to treat themselves for many ills. In fact, other than the time Eric broke his arm, treating themselves had worked so well that they hadn't made a visit to a conventional doctor for over thirteen years!

But the last frontier for Lucy to overcome was the sinus and allergy driven pain. Knowing that homeopathy is person-specific, not pathology-specific, she returned home to bury herself in Dr. Douglas Gibson's book, Studies of Homeopathic Remedies. This led her to a further understanding of the remedy Kali bichromium, the remedy the homeopath had mentioned. It described the pain above the eyes and sinuses as intense, becoming worse from stopping down. “That's for sure!” she said aloud. “This is the one for me.”

Lucy was excited because she now had a plan. She had the remedy in her trusted kit and anticipated the next episode of sinus pain.

So Lucy waited. Usually only a few weeks passed between each episode of sinus dripping, stringy mucus and the powerful sinus pain. And then one windy morning, a significant change in barometric pressure blew in and the tenderness in Lucy's sinuses returned with persuasive gusto. The first twinges settled above her left eye and when they blossomed into full sinus pain, she took four little pills of Kali bichromium. She repeated the dose in two hours. Her books had mentioned it might take a round of three to four doses before improvement ensued.

Just after the third dose, Lucy fell asleep for two hours. This was unusual for her. But more noteworthy was that the head pain wasn't minimized, it had vanished! And she was energized and pain-free of it even though the usual provocative conditions were at hand. Historically the pain and weariness lasted for days. Oh blessed relief!

A month later when the rain pelted after a long stretch of drought, Lucy got another characteristic headache. However, its intensity was uncharacteristically mild. Nonetheless, she took Kali bichromium again and promptly feel asleep for 20 minutes. When she awoke, the soreness again was absent, replaced by a sense of well being that was like an old friend returning. Many months later while feeding the goats, she noted another developing weather change and since she had had no pain for the last several months, she smiled to herself in a knowing way. No headache, no dripping sinuses, no fatigue. That was three years ago. Lucy had cured herself of a near life-long, relentless ailment, using tenacity and homeopathy.

Homeopathy has a reputation for addressing self-limiting illness and then putting to rest the tendency for its return. It's not unusual for it to resolve substantial and near chronic hay fever and sinus pain. To Lucy, this was a testament to the covenant of self-care that she and Eric had pledged. More important, it's one thing to be without illness and quite another to radiate authentic health. Lucy now knew that.

The Author ‘s Story

I know allergies. Much like Lucy, I know debilitating, segregating , lonely allergies. Twenty-seven or so years ago I suffered for a decade from the most trying years of my life. At the time I was an account executive with NBC, a director on the board of a world class orchestra. My life was in full gear when my health flew out of control. I could no longer work for the pain and fatigue, I had to sell my home and move back with my parents.

Having hailed from a large Italian American family, with a generous share of doctors, it was only natural to seek their care. However, it was as frustrating for them as it was for me, as my condition worsened . Each subsequent drug and procedure caused deepened pathology. Finally out of desperation, I too attended a lecture on the subject of homeopathy. The physician/speaker's words were logical, orderly and buoyed my spirits. Not long after, I found a lay practitioner who took my case and over many months cured me of asthma, chronic fatigue and multiple sensitivities.

Until that time I was limited to about ten foods that I could safely eat, and I was at the mercy of numerous chemical triggers. After years of this frightening and debilitating struggle, I began to study homeopathy with the hope of gaining an understanding for my family's care. So enamored by the powers of homeopathy while raising my family, I committed myself to a graduate program and earned my degrees as a classical homeopath.

The road hasn't been easy, but worth the effort, for today, instead of being a slave to allergies, I pop out of bed in the morning, walk up a steep ski hill for my daily workout and, although I prepare only my WAPF-style meals, I can indeed eat in restaurants without suffering. Best of all, my experience as a victim-of–allergies-turned-healthy-homeopath has helped me help others transform their lives as well. Not all illnesses can be handled without the aid of a homeopathic practitioner, but simple methods for at home use are within reach of all. Dr. Weston Price aptly urged, “Teach, teach, teach.” I say to my clients and students, “Learn, learn, learn.”

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