4. Movement and Form
Engaging the will in a physical manner warms the body (expressing the I organization) and at its best will promote sweating (excretion is the activity of the soul body or astral). Regular exercise and diet modification has been shown to have a stronger therapeutic effect in diabetes than medication (metformin). Working with the holistic picture of diabetes as a disorder of incarnation/early excarnation more can be added than simply a recommendation for a gym membership. Rhythm, form and above all- meaning should be integrated into the physical activity. No better example of this integration exists than in Eurythmy therapy.
This movement therapy is not widely available in the US. Tai Chi can be seen as the Eastern form of Eurythmy. It has been examined in multiple studies and has clear I organization benefits. This study in diabetics shows improvement in blood sugar control- there is a clear link between form and movement with integration of the I organization into the physical body.
Other activities that include rhythm and purpose include gardening and hiking. These allow access to impressions from nature- with gardening a direct impact of our physical activity on nature is paramount. This necessitates rhythmic application of the will forces and is quite therapeutic. It is best to exercise to the point of sweating as this is an outer sign of the higher members taking hold of the physical and life body.
5. Supporting the “I am”
Several remedies are key in Anthroposophic (humanized) treatment of diabetes. Rosemary is a key healing plant that we have discussed in diabetes care before. Rosemary puts its sulphur forces of oil creation into its leaves. This supports the I organization as it takes hold of the physical body. Rosemary given as an herbal supplement will reduce insulin resistance and helps control blood sugar. In homeopathic form it can also be taken internally to support the incarnation of the I and astral.
Quartz (silica) has a relationship with light and structure. The sense organs develop in the company of the amniotic fluid which is high in silica. Diabetes is a disorder that affects sensing- this is not limited to just the well known issues with diabetic retinopathy and neuropathy. Internal sensing is disordered as well. It is well known that diabetics often have masked symptoms of heart attack, sometimes just feeling unwell or nauseated. Diabetics cannot “sense” and respond to boluses of food that then result in elevated blood sugar. With gastroparesis the stomach can have a meal inside and not respond to it. Typically quartz is given in mid-range potency.
Where quartz structures light and holds its form giving properties, phosporus also stands in relation to light as the active, working, willing power of the I organization. Where our will is active we see the active working of phosphorus (ATP converts to ADP to give energy for nearly all biologic processes). Phosphorus and its relation to calcium is an astonishing picture in the human body of a polarity that we will explore another time. Phosphorus in low potency is incarnating and often used in the mornings in diabetes.
6. Inner work
Diabetes points to the need to strengthen the human organism so it can live in the body it gets with our times, with the destiny that occurs through our current world. Nothing can be better than the six basic exercises developed by Rudolf Steiner. Each is done for 4 weeks before moving on to the next one.
- Control of thoughts- each day 5 minutes are dedicated to thinking about a very simple object (pencil or paperclip)
- Control of actions- each day a simple, unnecessary action is performed at the same time (triggered only by us remembering to do it)
- Equanimity- through the day observe your feelings (tame your intense ones, increase your weak ones)
- Positivity- through the day look at situations with a positive stance
- Open-mindedness- through each day practice being open-minded
- Harmonization of the preceding 5 exercises.
Working with these exercises is beneficial for everyone but especially therapeutic for diabetics.