Sunday, 23rd September 2018
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With Breda Gardner Homeopath, lcph, mcos, rgn

Health Therapies Clinic

13 Gladstone Street, Waterford.

Tel: 087 2025753.

Insight Natural Health Clinic

15 Upper Patrick St, Kilkenny

Tel: 056 7724429

East meets West (Part 2)

In terms of Western medicine, I have a foot in both the traditional camp and the complementary camp. I trained and worked as a nurse for many years, before a growing disillusionment with some of the practices of modern medicine led me to look for answers elsewhere. It was then that I began to study complementary therapies such as homeopathy and iridology, and I have never looked back since.

Although I remain a great believer in the amazing powers of traditional medicine, I also believe that the way ahead for the future is to combine both the traditional and complementary medicine: the best of both worlds. And in the same way that traditional and complementary medicine can learn from one another, so can the systems of healing in the East and the West.

Last week I shared some of the insights from a book called "Oriental Medicine & Eastern Philosophy" written by my friend Dheai Ilsaaid. There was a great reaction to the article, so I am continuing here with the same theme as last week.

In my precious article, I covered Dheai’s description of the different Eastern approaches to diagnosis, and I also wrote about the importance attached to breathing. An equally important idea - indeed possibly the most important idea - in Oriental philosophy and medicine is the concept of Yin and Yang.

Dheai explains how Yin and Yang are seen as the very foundation of the Universe. But they are also about balance: balancing the male and the female, the dark and the light, the left and the right, the day and the night, the sun and the moon, movement and stillness, sleep and being awake, the inner and the outer, the head and the heart, and so on. This concept of balance is of fundamental importance in the East. Indeed, it could be argued that the primary goal of Oriental health practitioners is to restore balance and harmony in the body, enabling it to perform as was originally intended.

What a wonderful idea! I see so many patients in my clinic who are out of balance, and who are suffering because of the lack of equilibrium in their lives. We all need the Yin and the Yang in our lives. Too much Yin, and we are shy, repressed, not active enough, sluggish and cold: these characteristics may manifest themselves in physical symptoms like colds, indigestion, constipation and poor circulation. Too much Yang, and we are aggressive, hot-headed, moving too quickly and impatient, potentially resulting in headaches, excessive heart rates, sleep problems and diarrhoea. I wonder how much more effective Western medicine might be if the primary goal was to get people back into balance, rather than focussing on individual symptoms!

For more information about Dheai or to order his book, see or call 086 0777700.


Letters to the Editor

  • Waiting can be bad for your He...

    When the latest statistic that waiting times for patients had risen to their highest level yet, there can't have been too many people that were surprised.There are now over 700.000 people on waiting lists with over 50.000 of them children. That so many people are waiting for treatment in one of the most developed economies in the world is truly frightening. Of course you can take into account the underfunding of the health sector during the economic downturn but it still wouldn't fully explain why so ma …

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