Issue 171

The Myth of Addiction: Jonathan Wills!

I was reading a very interesting book recently, which caught my eye because of the unusual title "The Myth of Addiction". The first edition was published more than fifteen years ago and it's writer John Booth Davis, even then had a deep insight into what addiction is. None-the-less he gives the impression of having some fundamental misconceptions about addiction, and although I haven't finished reading it, there is some language at the very beginning of the book that raised my eyebrows. In the Prologue Davis writes "The basically that people take drugs because they want to and because it makes sense for them to do so given the choices available…" I've written a previous article on whether smokers choose to smoke and in it dispelled this rather pervasive myth. Despite this quite obvious fact, Davis with the words above still maintains the perception that addicts "want" and "choose" to take drugs. What are the choices available? The "wanting" is a result not so much of the desire to be in a euphoric state, but more as a result of wanting to avoid the negative experience of withdrawal - in other words to face life without the drug. Thus the nature of addiction denies any genuine "choice". Addicts continue to take drugs because they don't understand how their dependence has developed and fear terrible trauma of either going through nasty physical withdrawal or that life will never be the same without their "little friend". If addicts had a genuine choice to be free of their dependence, most would jump at that chance.

If an addict believes there is some kind of benefit in his drug of "choice", and that he "chooses" to experience the benefit, then of course the addict will believe not only that there is a benefit and that he "wants to take the drug" but the more insidious belief, which is at the core of addiction, that he also "chooses" to do so. The reality, in any objective sense, is that he has no choice and therefore feels compelled to keep taking the drug. The compulsion however is a direct result of the belief in the benefit and so the vicious circle is complete and the behaviour self-reinforcing i.e.

1. I smoke because I believe it helps me to relax (i.e. benefit, pleasure or crutch)

2. I feel deprived when I can't smoke BECAUSE I am no longer able to relax (i.e. no longer getting my benefit, pleasure or crutch)

3. I'm miserable when I can't relax/smoke, so I want to smoke to feel relaxed.

What's happening here of course, is that the smoker causes the feelings of agitation, irritability and "general malaise", precisely because of the feelings of deprivation and believing he is being deprived of a genuine benefit.

But if he were to realise, very clearly and without any doubt, that in fact cigarettes/nicotine cannot aid relaxation, but in fact do the opposite and actually create feelings of agitation, irritability and "general malaise" then he can move toward being free of the dependence.

Davis goes on "What the book says, basically, is that most people who use drugs do so for their own reasons, on purpose, because they like it, and because they find no adequate reason for not doing so.."

But smokers don't smoke because they like it, even though that's what many of them will tell you. Saying they like it is just another way of justifying the behavior. The same is true, probably to a greater extent with other types of drug addicts. Heroin addicts don't so much take it because they "like it" it's because they don't like the feelings of withdrawal. But such feelings begin as beliefs. The experience of being "high" is simply one of altered brain chemistry and the consequent perceptions of euphoria etc. But most drug addicts believe that withdrawal from their drug of "choice" would be catastrophic and so enormously horrendous that they avoid it like the plague. Yet the observation of drug addicts experiencing withdrawal in reality is very different, as documented very eloquently by Theodore Dalrymple in another great read "Romancing Opiates - Pharmacological Lies and the Addiction Bureaucracy" - but on that book, I will comment in my next article.

07 3892 4229

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Why Some People Can't Lose Weight or Achieve Goals Despite Good Diet & Exercise: by Caryn Wichmann ND Naturopath & Nutritionist at Perpetual Wellbeing!

Have you noticed that even with good diet and exercise many people find it difficult to achieve their health goals? This is a common issue raised by new clients of Perpetual Wellbeing, and the answer is that many aspects of your biochemistry could be the underlying cause including - overworked adrenal glands, overworked pancreas, overworked liver, arteries clogged with cholesterol or other deposits, overworked immune/inflammatory response, a poorly functioning thyroid, abnormal metabolism, cells that no longer respond to insulin, and a poorly functioning digestive system.

To overcome this problem we provide our clients with a naturopathic consultation that usually lasts about one hour and we discuss a variety of health issues looking for signs that will point us to which body biochemistry is malfunctioning.

Signs and symptoms to look out for are usually one or more of the following: headaches, insomnia, fatigue, food cravings, indigestion, anxiety, poor concentration, mood swings, depression, nausea, constipation, diarrhoea, skin problems, pain of any type, joint and muscle problems, allergies / intolerances, and a variety of other symptoms.

We recommend a professionally designed nutritional and supplementation plan, as these have been shown to increase the energy you have for exercise, improve mental function and motivation, help with fat loss, improve muscle building, and help resolve any symptoms, health issues and imbalanced biochemistry that may be preventing you from achieving your health objectives.

We resolve a number of health issues by this process because the reality is, that we function as a whole person and all health issues interrelate in some way. Thus by getting the overall body biochemistry in good order, achieving your desired health becomes easy.

(07) 3023 5082 Fax: (07) 3023 4000 Address: level 20, HSBC Building 300 Queen St, Brisbane City 4000

All new clients attending our CBD clinic for an initial consultation during the month of October 2009 will receive a one year free membership of our website – valued at $200.


Congested Skin Detox: By Ananda Mahony ND from Vitale Natural!

Blocked pores, dull skin, uneven skin, blackheads and whiteheads...all signs of congested skin and often affecting not just teenagers, but adults too. Also knows as open comedomes, blackheads are literally tiny plugs in the opening of a follicle or pore on the skin. The pore plug is a combination of oils, sebum and dead skin cells. Open to the skin's surface, the plug becomes darkened as it is exposed to oxygen. Whiteheads are closed at the skin's surface, blocked by cellular debris but not exposed to oxygen so remain light in colour.

Blackheads, whiteheads and blocked pores are usually caused by a combination of factors. Excess skin oil, sebum and toxins that are expelled through the skin are often an underlying issue. In addition dead skin cells, pollution, occlusive make up and dirt also play a role by filling up pores already opened by sebum and oil production. Each factor will contribute to congestion in a different but significant way:

Skin Oil & Sebum:
excess oil and sebum production by the skin will contribute to clogging pores and encourage the growth of skin bacteria. When combined with external factors such as dirt, blackheads easily form.

Toxic Congestion: blood and lymph supply the skin with nutrition. However, if the toxins that are produced in our bodies everyday are not eliminated properly, they are eliminated via the skin and can contribute to congestion as well as other issues such as acne and skin irritation.

Dead Skin Cells: Each 3 or 4 weeks the skin replenishes the skin cells. This natural process creates a layer of dead skin cells over the surface of the skin. If not removed, the dead skin cells create dull looking skin. The other thing that may happen is that the dead cells will plug the pores on your face and create congestion and blackheads. When combined with excessive sebum production, this can lead to the formation of white-heads and black heads.

Skin Care & Make Up: The key culprits in skin congestion are products that contain petrochemical based oils as they have an occulusive effect, stopping the skin from breathing and blocking pores. Talc, which is common in make up and finishing powder, also has this effect. Waxes and butters may also be an issue with skin prone to congestion. Make up is usually worn on a daily basis so it is essential to choose a make up that suits your skin type and doesn't contribute to further congestion.

Pollution & Dirt: Building up on the surface of skin over the day, pollution is a factor in the formation of blackheads and blocked pores. The more polluted the area in which you live, the more skin pollution you are likely to experience. Effective skin cleansing is vital to clean the skin of daily dirt and grime...and a splash of water at the end of the day just doesn't cut it. Dirt that is found on our face and other parts of the body can be a breeding ground for bacteria and combined with oily skin can make things even worse. Where does the dirt come from? Dirty hands are a key culprit and those already conscious of their skin tend to pick and rub their skin more than others, just making the problem worse.

Treatment of Blackheads

So, how to get rid of blackheads and congested skin? Well squeezing them out is not the answer. This technique will just lead to further skin irritation and possibly damage and scarring to the surrounding tissue. Rather than removing blackheads by squeezing, the best way to get rid of them is by attacking the source of the problem.

1. A good cleansing routine: Cleansing the skin of daily dirt, grime and pollution is essential. A good cleansing routine is a very effective way to remove blackheads, as it will help wash away excess oil and dead skin particles. Use a gentle cleanser as harsh and overly-drying cleansers will only make the problem worse by causing an increase in sebum production. If your skin feels squeaky clean, dry and tight after washing, you are doing more harm than good and need to use a more gentle cleanser. Avoid products with Sodium laurel sulphate as this ingredient tends to disrupt the acid mantle again causing increased sebum production.

2. Regular gentle exfoliation: one way to minimise congestion and clogged pores is to ensure the top layer skin remains clear by regularly removing the dead skin cells. There are a number of very effective products you can use to remove dead skin cells.

Regular use of facial exfoliants or scrubs will help clear dead skin cells that block pores. Removing the top layer of dead cells will also allow your moisturiser or serum work more effectively as it comes into contact with live skin cells rather than dead ones.

There are a couple of things to look for in a good exfoliant. The most obvious, although it is surprising how many people ignore this, is that a body scrub is too harsh to be used as a facial scrub. Look for a very fine, soft exfoliant as your facial skin is soft and delicate. A harsh scrub may actually scour the surface of your skin much like a scrubbing brush and this can actually damage skin cells. If your skin is excessively red or inflamed after use they are far too strong. Gentle exfoliants will slough off cells without a harsh scrubbing effect and are suitable to be used 2-3 times a week.

3. Fruit Enzyme Peels: enzyme peels are another way of clearing dead skin cells. They work as a result of their ability to break the bonds between dead skin cells that form at the surface of the skin. Skin normally has a dead layer of cells at its surface (the corneocyte layer), and fruit enzymes can speed up the normal process of skin cell regeneration and sloughing. This results in increased flexibility of the skin as well as decreased formation of large dry skin flakes at the surface of the skin.

Pumpkin, pineapple and pawpaw provide natural, gentle enzyme proteases that loosen the glue between dead skin cells, slough away impurities, dead skin cells and unplug the pores while delivering nutrition to the skin. This leaves the skin cleansed and silky smooth and reduces the likelihood of blackheads. Fruit enzyme 'peels' only need to be used once or twice a week for good effect.

4. Light Moisturisers - moisturisers that use waxes, butters and petrochemical oils will be more likely to contribute to congestion in skin that is prone to blackheads. Please note that waxes and butters are perfectly suitable and definitely beneficial for those with dry or dehydrated skin but for those with congested skin, choose lotions rather than rich creams. If you have combination skin and suffer from congestion as well as dry skin, use oil based serums or hyaluronic acid to increase moisture content in the skin without contributing to further blockage.

5. Salicylic acid and glycolic acid in high concentrations are common recommendations for skin congestion and while they might be effective in the short term they can cause significant problems and can be counter-productive to softening and dissolving blackheads as they can dehydrate dry, normal and combination skin. In addition, those with a history of use of high concentration glycolic acid can suffer redness and irritation at a later date when exposed to even mildly acidic ingredients such as ascorbic acid. If you choose to use such products, firstly use them in consultation with a skin specialist, use low concentrations, use them short term only and watch for signs of skin dehydration.

6. Make Up - Mineral make up is an ideal alternative for those with congested skin. Rather than sinking into or filling pores, the particles of pigment sit on the surface of the skin allowing the skin to breathe properly. This helps minimise congestion and eventually, allows the pores to shrink.

7. Dietary & Lifestyle tips:

Plenty of water will help flush toxins out of your system and regular and regular exercise will keep your lymphatic system flowing. Together both these factors will help reduce the level of toxins being eliminated via the skin.

Research conducted at RMIT University, Melbourne, has shown that a low glycemic index (GI), moderate protein diet improved symptoms of acne including the number of facial lesions. The diet consisted of 25% of energy from protein and 45% of energy from low GI carbohydrates such as fruit and vegetables, grains and pulses. While this research was conducted on patients with acne, there are strong correlations between high GI diets and skin congestion as well. Generally a high GI diet is associated with a greater degree of systemic body toxicity and inflammation and those prone to skin conditions are likely to eliminate toxins through the skin more readily.

A diet high in vegetables, fruit, good fats, lean protein, nuts & seeds is ideal for the skin as it contains lots of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants that support skin health.

Following the steps above will not only help you minimise congestion but will also encourage clear, vibrant skin in general.

Author: Ananda Mahony ND. Ananda is a naturopath and skin specialist. She owns Vitale Natural, an organic skin care store and beauty salon in Paddington, Brisbane.

83 Latrobe Terrace (at Sowelu) Paddington

(07) 3367 3233





Traditional Chinese Medicine through Foot Patches: by Barbara Elkins!

People who have been exposed to chemicals or taken a lot of drugs seem to benefit greatly from using foot patches, according to Wisdom for Living director Barbara Elkins.

The Wise Feet ® foot patches are Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), part of a very ancient healing tradition, probably the most ancient conventional medicine in the world. Wise Feet™ foot patches contain a synergistic mix of Chinese herbs and minerals.

They resemble big teabags. They are applied to the feet at night, when the body naturally detoxes itself. The body naturally goes into a "rest and repair" cycle at night, so you are assisting that natural process.

One of the reasons detox diets are sometimes so hard and uncomfortable is that you are detoxing out of that natural cycle.

Wise Feet™ foot patches act like an old fashioned poultice = They warm up and stimulate the acupuncture points on the feet. Wastes can be drawn out through the skin but more importantly the foot patches increase circulation thereby assisting the body to excrete wastes naturally via the increased osmotic pressure.

Overnight the foot patches change from a sandy coloured powder to a dark, wet sticky "goo". This is an indication that the patches are working and that you are adequately hydrated. The true test is how you feel after using them, ignore the colour and the smell, which may or may not change over time.

They are particularly effective on insect or spider bites. You can use them at your own pace in the privacy of your own home. "Many people have had wonderful, if not spectacular results," Miss Elkins said. "Typically people who have a lot of body pain (from arthritis, fibromyalgia, old injuries, swollen legs, hot or cold feet, to gout and chronic fatigue) find the patches relieve their discomfort quite dramatically."

The patches are easy to use and non-invasive. "Many people are finding they can decrease or even stop some of the medications they are taking (this seems to be particularly true of arthritis sufferers)," Miss Elkins said. "People who have been exposed to a lot of chemicals or have taken a lot of drugs in their lives seem to benefit greatly from using these foot patches. They are even being used by naturopaths to help children with autism and ADHD.

Our world is now full of chemicals that were not around when we first evolved and they are affecting our health."

"Typically my customers ring up to ask me about them and they just try one pair to start. After using them for one night they are usually on the phone the next day to order a box." They also ask "How long do you use them?"

Miss Elkins uses this analogy that "it's like cleaning out a shed in the backyard" - It all depends on how messy it is as to how long it takes to really tidy up. Once it's tidy it only needs a bit of maintenance to keep it that way. Therefore you are not going to be using foot patches continuously for the rest of your life…just until you feel better.

" For more information contact Wisdom for Living, phone 02 4334 6868 fax 02 4334 6818 or visit

Hypnotherapy: Make Your Subconscious Your Best Friend!

Somebody very wise once said: "Hypnotherapy is like the unseen friend" … It is true.. and can release you from negative habits of smoking and overeating. Stress, anxieties and fears will be easily manageable. Self-sabotage and procrastination will become completely alien notions and you will be leaping out of bed every morning with joy of having an opportunity to live yet another splendid day.

It sounds as if it's from the realm of magic. However, extensive research has proven that the thoughts you hold in your mind the most… create the physical reality you are experiencing. Working with the hypnotherapist, you can condition your mind to shape your world according to your desires.

Here is how you can start today. Upon awakening, before even opening your eyes, become aware of the stillness of your mind. Bring back from your memory the Perfect Moment in your life when you were very happy… bushwalking, having fun with your family and friends … or simply just looking good! Hold that image of the happy you, feel the blissful sensation penetrate your entire body and mind. Now magnify that feeling, and re-live it again...and again until you burst with joy. Feel the happy hormones rejuvenating your body and your mind. Rejoice! You have charged yourself positively for the entire day - repeat this exercise at any time you wish.

Call now 1300 13 14 92 for an appointment at Health and Harmony Clinic, Brisbane. 25% Discount

5 Day Hypnotherapy Training, visit $250 Discount

Perfect opportunity for the existing practitioner to add value to their practice. " Choose from 150 Easy Home Study courses $50 Discount

My Health Specials: Personal Training, Weight Management!

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Short and Sweet:Cabbage Salad!


Shred finely and place in a large bowl: 1 green cabbage 1 large carrot 1/2 large onion 1 jalapeno, finely diced

Dressing 2 Tbs. toasted sesame oil 2 Tbs. rice wine vinegar (or apple cider vinegar) 2 Tbs. Shoyu 2 Tbs. fresh lime juice 1 inch fresh ginger root, grated 3-4 large garlic cloves, minced or grated Cayenne (to taste)

Pour over vegetables and toss until well combined. It is best if you refrigerate in a covered container for a few hours for flavours to blend. Toss again before serving.


Laughter is the best medicine!
















.Quote of the week!

"Self-disciplined begins with the mastery of your thoughts. If you don't control what you think, you can't control what you do." Napoleon Hill 1883-1970, Author of Think and Grow Rich

For a Good Cause: Why Support Open Minds?

Open Minds is a not for profit and charitable organisation providing community based support services to persons with mental illness, intellectual disability or acquired brain injury



In the next issue of "Naturally Happy"


  • Pinpoint Health Centre!
  • Carindale Hills Natural Health!
  • Belgravia Aquatic Centres
  • Vitale
  • Health and Harmony College!
  • Short and sweet!
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My Health Specials provides this information for your personal education and enrichment. Information provided should not be used for diagnosing or treating a health problem or disease. Nor should the information replace the advice of your health care practitioner. Always seek professional advice if suffering an illness. My Health Specials Pty Ltd and all parties involved in the conception, production, ongoing maintenance and operation of Naturally Happy accept no liability and no responsibility for any damage whatsoever arising from or in connection to your use or operation of the website or information contained in this e-magazine.