THE ACCRESCENT™ PODCAST EPISODE 128
Dr. Juli Kramer – The Physiology of Repressed Emotions & Cancer – Why Emotional Work is Vital
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Dr. Juli Kramer is back to discuss a vitally important topic: how repressed emotions and unresolved experiences can contribute to cancer. She explains the physiology of repressed emotions and how they prevent healing cells from attacking the cancer cells and more.
Leigh Ann Lindsey: Julie, thank you so much for coming back. To preface this just for the listeners, I reached out a few weeks ago asking some questions about breast cancer and the traditional Chinese medicine view of breast cancer, and you had such great comments that I was like, okay, I think we need to turn this into an interview because there’s so much to be said there,
but the second part, and the thing that I got so excited about is we’re coming out of October, which is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and there’s so many posts about it, but I feel that there is such a glaring lack of posts around the emotional component to breast cancer. And so that’s something I’m really excited to talk about today.
But we’re also gonna dive into. Chinese medicine’s perspective on physiological imbalances and breast cancer. But with all that said, welcome back. I’m so excited to have you.
Dr. Juli Kramer: Thank you. Thank you so much, Leanne. I was really honored and I’m so excited to talk about this issue with your listeners. As women, we need to be empowered in our health, and I’m excited that you’re bringing people information that helps them take charge to get their emotional and physical health in a strong position.
So this is one more tool in their toolbox to help them just know they’re in control and they can make a difference.
Leigh Ann Lindsey: I love that. It’s so good. So we talked about how, okay, we’re gonna talk a little bit about physiological imbalances and emotional imbalances, but one of the things you said right off the bat is that in traditional Chinese medicine, they’re not separate things, the emotions and the physical. Can you touch on that a little?
Dr. Juli Kramer: Yeah, definitely In Chinese medicine we’re a whole system and in fact, most of the imbalances or problems with the physical aspects of the body are believed to come from emotional imbalance. And there are seven basic emotions and we’ll talk about those. And when those emotions are out of control, our bodies suffer.
So it’s very much a two-way street as well. If we don’t eat well, we don’t rest, we don’t care for our body, then our emotions can get stuck. They can get kind of too fiery or too strong, and we get illness both ways. So the goal is to keep our body healthy, keep our mind calm, and with the combination of the two, both we’ll be in a good state of balance and you’ll be healthy both physically and emotionally.
Leigh Ann Lindsey: Where do we start with starting to look at breast cancer through this lens of Chinese medicine?
Dr. Juli Kramer: Okay. I’m gonna start with some terms for your listeners that will help your listeners have understanding of the landmarks or the words we use to talk about the body in Chinese medicine.
And they’re very important for understanding this emotional component because I’m gonna be using terms like blockages and stuck energy, which are very familiar terms, but we’re gonna understand better how that happens and why that happens through these other benchmarks. Does that sound okay?
Leigh Ann Lindsey: Yes. I love it. I love it. Let’s dive into it.
Dr. Juli Kramer: All right, so the first term that’s super important in Chinese medicine is chi.
Chi is an, a best way I can describe it is energy moving through our body. So if you think about your home, you have light switches all over your home. When you click a light switch, a light will go on, or power will go to the source and you feel assured it’s going to work. And why does it work? Because the electricity is moving fluidly, right?
It’s the same thing in our body. So if I want to raise my hand or I want to sit down, or I want to wake up, that’s our chi. Initiating the action in our bodies. So chi we think of it like energy. It’s very, energy’s a very simple way to kind of narrow it down, but it’s the best way I can help your listeners really think about it.
So chi is energy that’s essential to move in our body so our bodies can function and do what they need to do. Now, just like in your home, if there is a cut wire, right? Something’s blocked. You turn on the light switch, nothing happens. And if that frayed wire continues to be frayed, many people have had house fires, right?
Problems happen when there is something wrong in that flow of energy and in the mechanisms that make that flow possible. The same is true in your body. If chi gets disrupted, if something, in other words, emotions, or poor diet or other things, block this movement of chi, lack of exercises, is another example, then you’re going to have problems.
So that’s the first. The next concept is blood, and everybody knows about blood, but in Chinese medicine it is everything, right? Chi and blood move together. So we have this kind of electrical energy and blood is the fluid energy. So think of the plumbing in your home or a clear river flowing. We want that fluidity. We want things to be able to move. We also, so if you think about in your home, we want that blood to move in the vessels properly. We don’t want the a leak in our pipes, right? If we have a leak in the house, you’re gonna get flooding and all sorts of problems. The same is true of blood in the body.
So if we have a stuck drain where the water can’t go down the drain pipe, that’s a problem that can cause flooding or in the vessels, the pipes. That we use. If there’s a crack or a frozen, you know, pipe burst, that’s gonna cause problems as well. So that’s the fluid, the liquid . And then the other liquid we have is within our lymph system.
So we want the fluids and the electrical energy to move in our body. So those cells can be nourished, the cells can do their job. The white blood cells, the red blood cells, the lymph cells, all of the different cells, the phagocytes. Then all of these different cells can do what they need to do to keep us healthy.
So those are those two things. There are two more concepts. I wanna talk about. One is phlegm. Phlegm is when our bodies, the chi and blood, aren’t moving well. And so gunk can’t be cleared out. So if you’ve ever walked by a really smelly river that all of the gunk has backed up, and you get this very strong odor, there’s tons of gross algae and trashes building up that is phlegm.
When you notice the phlegm in your nose or in your, uh, mouth, if you spit phlegm out, then it’s gone very, you, it means you probably have a lot more phlegm deep inside that you haven’t been noticing. And so it’s, there’s a lot of symptoms of phlegm. But when I mention phlegm, we’re talking about the waste and gunk that has not been cleared because the chi and blood aren’t moving right.
Aren’t strong enough to clear this phlegm out. Now, if the phlegm gets too great, we get a condition called dampness. Our body should always be at a proper fluid level. So if you tend to get really dehydrated or if you get edema where you have swelling in your ankles, your hands, those are symptoms of dampness.
If you’re very tired, you wake up in the morning exhausted, or you have to take a nap in the afternoon cuz you’re going to crash, that means the fluid levels, the chi and blood that make everything run and operate properly within the viscera with right within all of the beautiful parts of our body. When they can’t do their job, will get phlegm and damp. So those are the four concepts that are very important if you understand those. All the other concepts that I’m gonna talk about with the pathology of cancer and in particular, we’ll talk about breast cancer, but this does apply to all cancers.
And so what we’ll talk about is how and why they break down and how this then leads to cancer. So let’s talk, see if there are any questions that come up for you that might clarify these concepts for everybody.
Leigh Ann Lindsey: Yeah, well, what I’m just thinking is this is already such a different approach to a conventional medicine approach to cancer, and that’s something I really wanna highlight because as we talked about before, recording, unfortunately oftentimes someone with cancer who’s going to a conventional practitioner is met with the sentiment of, okay, well this is either genetic, or if it’s not genetic, then it’s just pure bad luck.
But either way, it’s kind of just bad luck if you had the genes, et cetera. And so I love working with and hearing from practitioners who are going, look, everything happens for a reason and when we can start to trace that backwards, we can get down to some of the potential root causes. And that makes me really excited because like you said before, it gives us back that power rather than helpless victims.
We can actually have so many tools to, of course, while we’re working with doctors, while we’re working with other practitioners, but we can take this knowledge, we’re learning to then go ask even more informed questions, to do even better research, all the things.
Dr. Juli Kramer: absolutely. Absolutely. And so again here that is the roadmap and to the empowerment. And so we then break down, there’s four things that contribute to cancer. And so in the first category, there are the things that cause chi stagnation. So when something is stagnant it it’s not moving.
That’s the main thing to think about. When you’re stagnant, the movement that’s supposed to happen isn’t. Think about that a power source in your home isn’t working, and so emotional strains, good or bad, right? You could be getting married and there’s a lot of emotional strains associated with that, or maybe you just had a baby, and so positive and negative.
Whenever there’s an emotional strain, depression of liver chi, what that means is each organ has its own energy system, and in particular the energy of the liver, which is responsible for clearing toxins, cleansing the blood, nourishing the blood. When that energy is really suppressed, it’s not working or external pathogenic factors, like it could be something in your environment is harming the liver, or it could be something in your environment is making you extra tired. Maybe your boss is having you work long hours and maybe it’s an illness that you came down with. All of those things, those three things, emotional strains, your liver chi weakening or some of these external factors can cause your chi to stagnate.
So that’s one thing. And that will cause clots. There’s all sorts of levels of clots, right? Our bodies always are getting clots and they’re clearing. When our bodies are healthy, we’re able to clear. It’s when these can’t clear and they’re in the tissues. Like some happen in the blood vessels, some happen in the capillaries but some can happen in the tissues.
And so when these clots happen, you can develop cysts, tumors, all sorts of problems. So that’s the first. So any questions about that? First chi, stagnation factors, things that make the chi the energy not function. Right.
Leigh Ann Lindsey: So I was just gonna ask any other examples and I’m getting my notepad cuz I wanna take notes during this, but any, so any other examples that the listener can really hone in on of chi stagnation?
Dr. Juli Kramer: So there are many examples of chi stagnation and that can happen way before you develop a clot. If for example, you have any broken blood vessels like varicose veins, that could be one thing that you can look at.
Cuz where if chi doesn’t move, blood can’t move and the spleen in this situation isn’t holding blood in the vessels. So that lets you know something’s stagnated. If you notice dark circles under your eyes, if you notice your hair turning gray very early before the age of 50, for example. Those are examples of chi within specific organs stagnating, something’s not moving, right. If your vision is worsening, uh, any sub health state is a symptom of chi stagnation, and we rank them from outside to inside deep. So for example, if you notice that you kind of have some watery eyes or your skin is itchy, pay attention to that early because that’s an early indicator of something that you can address right away before it goes deep into the core of your internal organs.
So the, you know, just very surface level stuff, if not a runny nose, if you get a runny nose, but you keep working and working, and then it goes into your lungs as an example of beginning chi stagnation, an external pathogen that the body can’t fight, but then you keep pushing and then it goes deeper into the organs of the lungs instead of just being up in the viscera, the external viscera.
When you get to the point of clots it’s been happening for a long time. You’ve been ignoring subtle symptoms and will, emotional symptoms, we’ll talk about those. There’s a lot of emotional symptoms of chi stagnation, getting angry very quickly at the checkout stand or when you’re driving irritation, crying super easily.
You know, for un unwarranted situations, that’s one example. Fear, excessive fear or anxiety. When you get depression, that means it’s been long standing because just short bursts of anger have gone deep, deep into the liver and it’s turned to depression. So there again, surface to deep. And the goal is to catch on the surface before things go deeper.
Leigh Ann Lindsey: Okay. And so we’re working through four key areas of imbalance, and that first one is that chi stagnation.
Dr. Juli Kramer: correct. Now our second is blood stasis or blood stagnation. And so blood and chi flow together and oftentimes when the chi stagnates, that’ll happen first and then the blood. Circulation will be affected. You’re gonna have an inter interference with the blood circulation. This interference gradually leads to blood stasis.
So stasis is the blood, can’t flow, can’t move. You’ll get the obstructions and there you’ll know, you’ll have aches and pains in an area you might have it move, which means that it’s not too deep yet. It’s kind of a more cold oriented externally, but you might have long, deep pain in the shoulder, in the knees, in the muscles, cramping all sorts of things that happen because the blood doesn’t flow.
Your circulation. You might notice a drying of the skin or oily greasiness of the skin, whatever. You can’t have that nice balance of the texture. . So when it gets really bad and you have blood stasis where the blood just is not moving, they call that dead blood. And if you have an accumulation in the body, eventually this develops into an immovable mass or lump.
And so the goal is to clear the chi and blood stagnation that will happen together. We always think of them together. One thing that can also contribute to blood stagnation is weak blood. When people don’t eat a good diet that can really lead to the poor production of blood. You don’t have the right quality viscosity to your blood, so it’s harder for it to move.
And people don’t realize that your diet, you know, saying you don’t eat vegetables or greens is like saying you don’t breathe air. It’s that essential, it’s that important to make good blood to prevent this blood stasis.
Leigh Ann Lindsey: Is that what you, I’ve heard the term blood building, is that in connection with that? This food? This food is blood building.
Dr. Juli Kramer: Yes. Blood building in the west also means the quality of the blood in terms of the nutritional content, right? That very good nutritional content. In Chinese medicine, we also look not just at the nutritional variable, we look at the viscosity and the how rich the blood is. So if you constantly have cold hands and feet, both your chi and blood are probably stagnated and you don’t have enough of the energy to move the blood where it needs to go, and the blood might be too sparse.
You might not have enough of it, and it might not be the right texture or viscosity to move.
Leigh Ann Lindsey: Okay. And so you were saying when we get that dead blood, those are pockets of areas where the, it hasn’t been circulating for long enough that it’s turning into a lump.
Dr. Juli Kramer: Exactly right. That’s exactly right.
All right, so we talked about fluid retention, right? Like we don’t wanna have damp condition in the body. We want our body to be able to process the fluids. And what really affects this is your digestion, your spleen and stomach. If they are weak, you know, for example, if you they can’t digest the food, you might have indigestion.
This can cause retention of fluid in the body, and that’s because the energy in the spleen and stomach are too weak to move the energy and the nutrients that they’ve taken from the food. They don’t have the energy necessary to help the chi moves. So the small intestine and large intestine and kidneys, liver, everybody can’t do their job downstream.
Right? So the spleen and stomach are the first intake organs to make sure that you are doing well. So symptoms of weak digestion are feeling that you’ve got indigestion, burping, a lot of gassiness, on the other end feeling like you need to throw up. Also if you don’t have an appetite, a very low appetite, or even if you’re always hungry, that lets you know that your stomach and spleen are weak and therefore your bodies might hold onto fluids and you’re gonna get that damp condition, which is one of the factors that can lead to cancer, can lead to these growths and weakening of the body.
Leigh Ann Lindsey: And I wanna just check, and maybe we’ll do this once we’ve gone through all four of them, the emotional factors that lead to chief stagnation, that lead to blood stasis. Okay, perfect.
Dr. Juli Kramer: Exactly. Great. So, so that, so digestion and what that means is long-term fluid retention and we will, I’m gonna link all of the emotions back to each of these problems because each of them has specific emotions tied to it.
So, for example, the spleen and stomach are tied to overthinking and worry. So if you overthink and worry too much, then you’re gonna have, weakening of your digestion, which leads to the damp conditions in your body. So, that’s another way lumps develop when we have too much fluid, long-term fluid retention, it produces toxic materials that can accumulate and form lumps.
So we have the blood stasis with the cyst and the, you know, immovable masses or lumps. And then we now have the toxins that aren’t cleared because of the fluid retention and that can contribute to it as well. So then other, the disorders of the lung and spleen can lead to poor digestion as well. And the body fluids, again, not being distributed properly.
this long-term problem then leads to phlegm. So think about it. If you don’t have, the river isn’t flowing fluidly, it’s not beautiful, it’s not clear. You get the gunk builds up and that’s your phlegm. And so the phlegm, if it’s not able to move outward, we want everything to go out to leave our body.
That’s how our bodies, they eliminate not just through the original or orifices. They eliminate through the skin. The skin is our largest detoxifier, the lungs and skin com combined. And so if it can’t be dispersed, it collects and it stagnates. And if you collect in the lungs, you get asthma and can lead to lung cancer.
And stagnation of the phlegm in the stomach leads to gastric disorder, nausea. And then if it goes beneath the skin, right, you can actually get lumps and masses in the skin and. Sometimes those can turn cancerous. The lungs are tied to the emotion of grief and sadness, and we are, oh yeah, I wanna get through this.
I feel like it’s so important to have this foundation though, to understand the body’s role because when we talk about the emotions, you’re gonna understand why, oh my gosh, my mind has so much power. My mind is making my body have these problems. And you’re going to value the role of working your mind to release these problems.
Cuz the mind is the most powerful tool to do that.
Okay, the toxic evils are things from the environment. So asbestos, chemicals, ultraviolet rays, radiation, and these create excess heat in the body cuz the body’s trying to fight them, right?
And so as it does this, excess heat creates abnormal cell fusion and growth. And so this abnormal growth is what causes cancer and it breaks down normal cell growth. And in that situation, you really can only either remove yourself from the situation, try and prevent exposure. And then I recommend professionally if you know you’ve been exposed to one of these very serious toxins, go see an acupuncturist or a Qigong medical doctor.
Or if you have another person who does energetic healing to clear. The toxins from your body is really important. And then the last one is just when you don’t have enough energy and blood. And that ties back to that nutrition, breathing and movement. If you’re not making what your body needs, that leads to the first two chi stagnation and blood stagnation.
So making sure that you do what you need to do with your body in order to produce the chi that you then can move and use to keep your body healthy.
All right, so let’s talk about emotional components. And I’m gonna start with a story from my teacher. He tells a story of when he went to Hawaii and he was meeting with four cancer patients and they some of them had come out of stressful, like abusive relationships.
Some were incredibly successful, high powered business people, and they had all developed cancer and they had all moved to Hawaii just to get away to, and they all had two weeks to live, right? Like you, they were not gonna live, they were not gonna survive. They were coming there to die. And they’re like, at least I’m just going to, you know, enjoy the end of my life and rest.
And he tells of how when they got there, they, were removed from these toxic, stressful, emotional environments. And when he interviewed them, it was years after they had moved to Hawaii.
Leigh Ann Lindsey: Oh wow.
Dr. Juli Kramer: It wasn’t two weeks later, it was years later that all of these four people from changing, from getting away from the toxic stress in which they found themselves, they healed their bodies, and were living these robust, productive lives and we’re positive and hopeful and everything that we wanna see.
And so he tells the story to show the power of our emotions. And western medicine is catching up. We do have a lot of research now showing that removing stress will help. And, you know, again, people often don’t have a choice, which is where the tools of QiGong of meditation come in to help give you these oases, right?
Like an island of calm in the sea of your stress. So it doesn’t carry you away. It’s not a tsunami, a flooding over you. So I’m, I wanna talk about how Chinese medicine looks at the effects of emotions on the body. So when you have an accumulation of negative emotions if it’s anger, that would be in your liver.
If it’s in your breasts, that would be in your kidneys cuz those are tied to the reproductive organs. If it’s in if it’s like overjoy or anxiety that’s tied to your heart, grief in your lungs. So all of these parts of your body, overthinking and worry, pancreatic cancer is very common now, partly because of diet, but also a lot from the emotions.
Your body walls off and creates an energetic cyst and instead of dissipating and moving the toxic chi, it gets stuck. And so as you, it’s, I’m gonna give you two very conflicting concepts and so I’m gonna just k kind of, give you an example to help tell the story from my own kind of experience. So we have emotions that we need to express, but we need to then move on from the story, which is why I love your EVOX. You’re moving people beyond the story to a new telling. So when we have an emotion that we don’t express it, get, this is what gets walled off, it becomes a barrier. And there’s a lot of physiological research that I can talk about the way that happens and why that happens.
But let’s just get the concept. And if that gets walled off, that emotion wasn’t let go, you’re going to get stuck. So for example, I had an estrangement in my life, a person , like I, I love four people, , like beyond all measures of the earth. And this was one of those people. And this person no longer talks to me, has wants nothing to do with me, has said, incredibly hurtful things and that emotion for a long time, I cried. I kind of thought I got it out, was really stuck, and my Chinese medicine doctor was like, you’re it’s affecting your lungs, right? It’s such deep grief and sorrow. He’s like, how it’s been now, it’s been seven years, but at the time he’s like, it was, it’s five years.
This is way too long. You, we’ve got to work on this. We’ve gotta clear this emotional blockage because it’s, you’re gonna get cancer basically. You’re going to, you’re going to get very sick. And so I had done therapy already. And so what I did was added Qigong. I added movement of my energy. I added meditation to really clear that block. Now we want that kind of movement. We want the focus long enough to let go, right? We don’t wanna completely ignore it, isolate it, block it, create a fortress around it, spikes, and you know, keep out. Keep out because then we’ll create a cyst, which leads to a tumor, right? We’ll have that toxin blocked. On the other hand, we don’t wanna relive an emotion, we want to let it go. What often happens in trauma, and I can talk about this experience as well I grew up with a lot of trauma in my life, and oftentimes in a relationship, I would tell the story and get that poor you. And if I didn’t, I would feel like, oh, more traumatized.
And this isn’t a lot of people do this, right? Like we tell our story to get empathy. And if we get the empathy that reinforces for us, oh wow. When I tell my trauma, I’m going to continue to get empathy. So this creates a blockage of never growing past our trauma. And at the same time, if we don’t get that empathy, it also makes it worse cuz we’re compounding the trauma, right?
So while we want to acknowledge our emotion, acknowledge the experience, the goal of that is to let it go. We don’t want the trauma to become another kind of castle. Another fortress blocking off any growth, right? Any growth in the ability of our minds and bodies to let go of emotion. And so as I learned more about Chinese medicine, learned about, you know, your EVOX and other ways of letting the body move past this telling, this retelling and telling of the story into this letting go of the narrative and inviting in the healthy aspects.
I could feel the healing in my body. I could actually feel, and for me it was in my joints, anger. My main source was anger that I wasn’t protected as a child. I you know, set for, you know, just a tremendous amount of abuse in that. Who was there for me? Why was no one there for me? And realizing that and letting go. The liver controls the joints and joint pain. When I meditated on it, moved through it, let the emotion release, I didn’t have this extreme joint pain anymore. And I can always tell when I kind of get some of that trauma cuz it’s never perfect. Right? We’re always needing to cleanse.
We’re imperfect beings. And if we’ve held onto a trauma, for me it was over 50 years, right? , like it’s, we have to let go. So emotions, feel them, live them, know them, release them. Trauma really get down to that emotional what is the benefit of holding onto the trauma for you So you can zone in on that emotion to also let go.
So questions about that? Thoughts about that?
Leigh Ann Lindsey: I love this so much. I think what I wanna ask about is, I’d love to hear a little bit of the TCM approach of what starts to happen. when these emotions are repressed. And then I have some questions around, like you had said, the breast is connected to the kidneys, and when I think of kidneys, I think of fear.
Is that the emotion connected with kidneys? Is that right?
Dr. Juli Kramer: It is. It is. That is correct.
Leigh Ann Lindsey: so I’m just thinking in my head. I also do know that resentment and anger tend to be some of the underlying emotions, often connected with cancer, broadly speaking.
And so I
Dr. Juli Kramer: I can explain that.
Leigh Ann Lindsey: oh yeah, I’d love it. But to give my own example as well,
Dr. Juli Kramer: Oh, I love it.
Leigh Ann Lindsey: in 2020, I had a breast cancer scare.
There was a lump there that was not normal tissue, although at the end of it, once it was removed, they couldn’t find cancerous tissue. But they were like, well, this isn’t normal tissue, so this is pre-cancerous tissue. We need to get it out, even though it wasn’t technically cancer. I do think it was something I caught early enough, and I do believe a hundred percent that if I hadn’t made any changes, it would’ve become cancer. All that said, some of the things learning that anger and resentment are connected to cancer and learning that the kidneys are connected to the breast are connected to fear. I can look back over my life and the early childhood trauma I experienced and see the immense amount of fear that I lived in for most of my life
Dr. Juli Kramer: Oh
Leigh Ann Lindsey: and see, wow, that is how connected that can be to that breast cancer.
And then what I just wanna say about the anger is I know sometimes we use words like negative emotions, and I think what we mean by that is, Not that they’re inherently bad, but when they’re repressed, they have negative effects. And that’s really important for me because again, because of my background, I think also religious influences, anger was just a no-no emotion.
And so I had years and years of anger that I just had never even let myself acknowledge. And if you had asked me if I had anger, I would’ve been like no, I don’t have any. I’m good. And . So I say
Dr. Juli Kramer: This is so, yeah.
Leigh Ann Lindsey: I
Dr. Juli Kramer: go ahead.
Leigh Ann Lindsey: it’s understanding the emotional connections to cancer. And breast cancer is, like you were saying before, it’s a roadmap for us to go okay I don’t consciously think I have anger. I don’t even, maybe, I don’t even consciously think I have fear, but can I pause long enough in hearing this? Maybe if you do have a cancer diagnosis to go, okay, let me take another look at this. Let me take another look at any anger that might be there that’s been repressed for years and years that’s been unacknowledged.
Take a look at fear, et cetera. It’s very humbling and I do think it can feel very scary, especially when you have, you know, for me it was 25 years of repressed fear and anger, and so initially it can feel like this hurricane that you’re about to unlock and that is so intimidating and destabilizing, but. Obviously, you know, look into resources, look into people who can support you through that, because the reality is that’s a storm that’s been raging within you for years and we, it’s time to let that go.
Dr. Juli Kramer: Oh my gosh, that is exactly right. And I love what you said. People do not have to do this alone, right? There are beautiful people that are there to help them and they can do a multi, you know, a multi approach, whether they can do chigong and counseling and, you know, acupuncture and diet. I mean, it’s systemic, right?
It’s, there are so many people in this world, me, you who we do what we do because we want to help you. There are millions of us. And you can find the person who’s right for you to help you clear and cleanse and heal safely. And that you’ll notice. And I wanna talk about this point that cancer cells can grow and accumulate, and this is Chinese medicine perspective.
Wherever emotions are being repressed so a person’s denial. Like you said, your anger maintains the constant unconscious flow of energy to these tissue areas. So the phagocytes and other components of the immune system do not attach to toxic pockets of emotional energy. So we want white blood cells, we want them to go in clear the gunk.
But when you have emotional armoring, right, this blockage energy’s blocking this area, your immune system cannot get there. The physiologically, like literally they, shown through the studies that they, and over case studies for thousands of years, they have believed that the other components of the immune system, along with phagocytes cannot attach to these blocked areas that are blocked by emotion cuz there’s too much energy there.
And so these toxic pockets are maintained because your continuous denial. Of their existence. It is like, this is this, consciousness and awareness exist at the cellular level of your body. Your body knows that this emotion is there. It is stuck. So if you have a cyst that is your evidence, that you have an emotion that you need to attend to, like that is your fibroid any hard tissue.
So if you can have this consistent, if it’s continually bombarding it, and you might not be aware of it, right, because you’re blocking it, it is bombarding the cells in the tissues and it causes them to go in a state of shock, right? This emotional shock, which then creates a second problem. So we have the first problem, the healthy work that needs to be done in these areas can’t happen.
The cells can’t get there, right? The proper phagocytes and other immune entities cannot get there. You produce negative things. You produce endogenous opiates and corticosteroids. They deplete the white blood cells further and prevent the immune system even more from protecting the rest of the body.
So it’s this double problem where the continuous emotional energy creates these other things that are going on, because they’re not functioning right. They create these endogenous opiates and corticosteroids. And so you have this double whammy of creating further and further problems.
And so the, you know, scientific, oh, sorry, go ahead. So see if there’s questions about that, and then I’ll talk about some of the studies that talk
Leigh Ann Lindsey: No, I just, I think that’s perfect and I, this is such a good overview of what cancer is. It’s a physical and emotional downward spiral that we’ve been in, that unfortunately it starts going down quicker and quicker because as you said, not only are is there a lack of the good, but now there’s an abundance of toxins.
And to your point about the emotions, these repressed emotions are blocking the access of the good things that are gonna attack that area and clear it out. But they’re also adding to the toxic burden. So like you said, it’s a double whammy.
Dr. Juli Kramer: Yeah. It’s crazy. And you know, so in a person with emotional blocks, you and me, right? This chronic tension disrupts the flow of chi. Remember, we need chi to flow to be healthy. And so if that emotional block is really deep and long standing, that tension is constant. You know, my doc, Dr. Ho kept saying, you, you have chi stagnation, blood stasis, chi stagnation, blood stasis.
And I was like, I don’t know what to do. And I didn’t know what to do because the capacity to discharge, express, and discharge the trapped emotion was so difficult. I wasn’t really consciously aware of it, right? Like I wasn’t consciously aware of it. And so it really him saying this and me knowing, okay, something’s there.
I have to trust the data he is telling me through. Cuz a doctor, when you go to a Chinese medicine doctor, they’ll look at your tongue, they’ll feel your pulse, they’ll ask you questions, they’ll look at your eyes and they, they can tell you, okay, here’s what it is and here’s where it is.
And I was like, okay, what is the emotion driving it then? And the problem is, as the awareness stems, like initially you really feel it. When we were little, you and I, we felt it like every day you felt it, you knew it. But we can’t survive that way. We, our body naturally defended itself. And we didn’t have the tools where we did Chiang, you know, we didn’t know what to do.
And so the, this natural communication between conscious and subconscious breaks down. the original conscious decision to suppress the emotions. And when you’re a baby or a child, you don’t even do it consciously, or maybe even as an adult. It just does it to survive. It just becomes a habit, and so that becomes a normal, apparent autonomic function.
It just is there. So your conscious and subconscious aren’t in harmony.
You know, the subconscious mind can no longer heal the body, the subconscious is your cells. Your subconscious is every tiny cell in your body doing a job it needs to do. And so if it’s constantly trying to avoid and protect.
It’s protecting one area, avoiding it, and all sorts of actions going on at the cellular level, you can’t do it. So you’ll notice changes in people’s posture, right? Our body sags our, you notice that you notice your skin temperature can even change. Your spiritual growth can become, and I’m not talking religious growth, I’m talking connecting to a bigger purpose, right?
Like just a bigger purpose. You can see your whole vital Life force lessen and people who have really strong chi that you were born with, they can hide it. For a you, as a professional athlete, you probably hid this many years, but your body was probably giving you a lot of information that something was wrong.
Leigh Ann Lindsey: Right, right. It’s so communicative and we say this all the time. It starts off with some gentle nudges, maybe some whispers here and there, and if we don’t listen long enough, those nudges become shouts. And what are, what is the body shouting at us? It’s cancer.
Dr. Juli Kramer: Yeah. And we wanna catch it before that yell. And if any of the listeners are there, it’s still not too late. Your body wants to partner with you. My, my other te teacher and mentor, Dr. Yung Jang, she actually has a beautiful book on Chinese medicine and emotional healing. It’s fantastic. She does, has a lot of prescriptions and really beautiful book.
But you know, she says your body loves you. And oftentimes in cancer, the body is the enemy. We’re told to fight it and combat it. And really our body got the cancer cuz it was protecting us from that emotional thing that we didn’t wanna acknowledge. So it was doing good in the first place. And then unless again we did talk about the other factors, right?
But emotions are the number one cause according to Chinese medicine. And in once it has it, the more you can partner with it to work together to heal, the sooner you can overcome and really work through that. So it’s difficult though, right? So when these sister tumors are internally induced from emotional causes, from these suppressed emotions they’re actually trapped.
These emotions have become trapped in the tissues themselves. It’s a physiological, systemic problem. And usually the emotions are anger, guilt, grief shame’s a big one. Disappointment.
Leigh Ann Lindsey: Oh, shame
Dr. Juli Kramer: Right.
Leigh Ann Lindsey: I know. Shame really well.
Dr. Juli Kramer: Oh
Leigh Ann Lindsey: as I think, as do many of us,
Dr. Juli Kramer: We all do. Yeah.
Leigh Ann Lindsey: us for a variety of reasons. But Yeah.
Dr. Juli Kramer: And so what healing healing can happen in, if you go to like a QiGong Medical QiGong doctor, a Reiki energy therapist, uh, traditional acupuncturist, what happens,
the way the healing happens, there’s four components. So the first is that the mind affects tissue matter through the emotions. So if negative emotions, I don’t wanna say negative, positive, blocked emotions cuz any blockage is the problem, right?
We, no emotion in Chinese medicine is good or bad. All emotion is just an experience. It’s if we get stuck in the emotion that it becomes bad. So anger, it’s what you do with the anger that’s bad, right? If you stick to it, if you yell about it, if you get stuck on it, that’s the problem. But if you’re like, oh, I’m angry, you feel it, you learn from it and you let go, then you’re okay.
Depress… Anything, sadness, all of that. It teaches us, it’s our life’s mission to learn. So the mind affects the tissues through emotions. So the work, the first step is to work on the emotions. Then the emotions cause neuropeptides. Good stuff to be released. So as we have these positive emotions, what the blockage was preventing from being released, then that can happen.
So the emotions now via the neuropeptides .The positive emotions have released these that influences the direction and movement of the immune cells. The mo, an example is monocytes. They can now get to the parts of the body where they were blocked from entering. We had that fortress, they weren’t allowed to enter there.
And once the immune system, the monocytes, the phagocytes can get where they need to go, the body can heal. And so what’s so interesting is these neuro peptide receptors are located on the immune cells, right? That link the body with the mind and emotions and the spirit. Yeah.
Leigh Ann Lindsey: Oh my goodness. Okay, so the four components of healing, did we, did you list those out
Dr. Juli Kramer: Number one is the mind affects the tissue matter through the emotions. Two, the released emotions cause neuropeptides to be released. So that’s the second component. The third component is the emotions that via the neuropeptides can influence the direction of the immune cells.
The monocytes, phagocytes. They can go where they need to go now, and once they’re there, number four, they can heal the body.
Leigh Ann Lindsey: Okay. Got it.
Dr. Juli Kramer: So what’s really crazy and my teacher talks about this fear, the dominant fear and anger, the dominant emotions associated with a cancer diagnosis. Do what? They create new fortress. And so the very thing you need to do with a cancer diagnosis is the very hardest thing to do with a cancer diagnosis. And you know, the only I have not experienced cancer. Also, actually not true. I did have some basal cell carcinoma in my eye. Terrifying. Terrifying. But my father has had horrible cancers throat cancer, almost died from the treatment lung cancer. And it, so I lived with him, watched him, and he got through both and. He did it as the warrior, but that positive emotion worked for him. It helped him really like work through and process through that. And I had another friend who had a incredibly rare of lymphoma that usually only children get in their spinal column.
And she got it. And her thing was, she was just like, yep, not gonna let this stop me. You know, again, this positive thing. And, you know, so it, they did it on their own without help. And I would invite people though, they can do so much more if the body isn’t the enemy in that scenario. Right? If you’re creating a positive emotion, knowing the body is the one that wants to work with you and heal you it wants to partner through this positive.
Leigh Ann Lindsey: I wanna highlight something you said. earlier though, which is fear and anger are the dominant emotions connected with cancer and they create these fortresses. And so we need to learn how to break down these fortresses in an empathetic and gracious and loving way.
But to the point that you made, why are these there in the first place? Because we don’t know how to break down those fortresses. And because we’ve consciously, subconsciously, and probably consciously been building up those fortresses, so it’s kind of like the one thing we absolutely need to do,
Dr. Juli Kramer: Yeah.
Leigh Ann Lindsey: might very well be the hardest thing someone needs to do because it’s what they’ve been doing the opposite their entire lives, building those fortresses.
And so again, there’s so many physiological things. I know cancer patients go through.
but I feel like that emotional component might be one of the hardest ones for a lot of people.
Dr. Juli Kramer: Yes,
Leigh Ann Lindsey: can do the chemo, I can tough through it. I can be the warrior. But can I actually, I don’t wanna say not be the warrior, but can I look at this emotional side and address that too?
And if it’s too scary, find the support I need to be able to do that because it is just so unbelievably important.
Dr. Juli Kramer: Yeah. It’s everything. Yeah.
Leigh Ann Lindsey: I think, and obviously I’m not a doctor, so don’t quote me on this, but my hunch is that this is a big reason why cancer reoccurs because.
Dr. Juli Kramer: In Chinese Medicine . Yes, for sure.
Leigh Ann Lindsey: Because we’ve attacked it from all the physiological angles, but we haven’t addressed any emotional root causes and those are still festering.
So we’ve maybe like attacked and killed what’s currently there, but that root cause is still festering, so it’s just gonna sprout up again.
Dr. Juli Kramer: That’s exactly right. And so the goal is to, you know, really learn to let optimism prevail over pessimism and, cultivate a vital energy through your emotions, right? Build up your health through this promotion of optimism. And that’s where getting a professional can help you. That you, again, you haven’t.
Gotten to this point, intentionally it’s not your fault. It’s nobody’s fault. No one says, I want to do this. No one, right? We just didn’t have the roadmap. We had a different roadmap that we were following. Suppress your emotion, block your emotion. Don’t be angry. Don’t be this, or, you know what I mean?
Like we were told all the time. And so that roadmap is really hard to change and it’s nobody’s fault. . They use that roadmap. It’s okay. That and that’s the first step, I think is for people, like you said, to realize there is a different roadmap out there for you. There is a roadmap that lets you be connected, your subconscious and conscious mind, your spirit and your body to not be disjointed anymore.
That you can be authentic, you can be your true self. You can have a sense of tranquility and optimism because you are authentic. When you’re angry, you express your anger. When you’re loving, you express your love. Believe me, love is one of the most often repressed emotions, right? People are taught, don’t show how happy you’re loving you are.
They’re like, that’s not okay.
Leigh Ann Lindsey: Yeah.
Dr. Juli Kramer: Yeah. And when you do that, your chi moves, your blood moves, all the things we talked about earlier that cancer cells are gonna gradually perish when you create this system in your body of vibrant, vital chi and blood, and a emotional roadmap and ability that lets you break down old fortresses and prevent the construction of new ones.
This is a powerful tool. And again, there are many tools and from, and I’m speaking solely from a Chinese medicine, medical Chiang perspective, the emotions, and you might have all sorts of other health problems that you’re grappling with, and the emotions are right there too. They’re right there as part of it.
Cancer’s just the scariest, most deeply. Long-term situated source of the problem in this case. Yeah.
Leigh Ann Lindsey: I wanna ask really quickly, just to close it out, can you expand a little bit on those modalities you were talking about that you had used to start to process some of this deeper emotion? You mentioned QiGong, and I was thinking in my head, Tai Chi. So these are different and can you explain that a little bit?
Dr. Juli Kramer: Yeah, both of them are great. Tai Chi is, QiGong is the foundation of all martial arts. It started, you know, thousands of years ago and it was using the body, moving the body to mimic nature for longevity. It was all about calming the mind in the body, bringing them in harmony with each other through movement, breath, and meditation.
And in western terms, we would say it is the original stress buster, right? Like it is. It gives you all the tools and skills to use your mind and body and harmony with your breath to be present in the moment, to not worry about the past, think about the future, but just to be connected to your body. And so the movements and the think.
Like there are actual prescriptions, medical qigong, meditations for cancer patients that you can actually do. And I have some on my YouTube channel that one is releasing blockages and bolstering emotional armor of positive armor, right? Like not the negative. I’ll send you the links to them. And there’s another, I have some on insight timer as well of melting stress melting.
One is, Clearing, you know, basically clearing away the emotional gunk. Tai Chi comes from QiGong, and it is a non forceful form of martial arts and it is rooted in very specific patterns, very specific movements that people do over and over that are beautiful. Qigong has some that repeat, some that are creative and new.
Depends which school of Qigong you follow. But for example, we work specifically on the organs. So on my website, in my women’s health, for example, I have breast health perimenopause, menstrual health. All of them are designed specifically for those particular organs. Boost that, that type of health, that really nourish and clear the two things we talked about, or four things we talked about.
Chi stagnation and blood stagnation, phlegm and damp. And we want to get those out of the body, move the body. And so that’s what Chigong does. So that’s the modality there. And meditation moves the mind, our mind can get stuck on like over and over and over and over looping, over and over. And we don’t want that.
We want to have an adult mind, not a toddler, mine, , you know? Or we want, we wanna, we want to guide and control and direct our mind with beautiful skill.
Leigh Ann Lindsey: What I wanna ask quickly about is now there are so many different types of meditation too. There’s transcendental meditation, I mean, I’m sure there’s so many others that I’m completely blanking on right now, but I know there’s just many types.
Dr. Juli Kramer: Yes.
Leigh Ann Lindsey: What’s your 2 cents on that? Is there any type that you’re like, I would start here?
Or is it look, whatever resonates, do it.
Dr. Juli Kramer: Yeah, I, okay great. Great question. For somebody who is an emotional armorer, , like they’re building their fortresses, I would recommend them to go with something that is more. Physical that they can move as they meditate. So Yoga chigong, a moving meditation where you’re not just sitting there feeling like, I can’t do this right?
Like, we’re so hard on ourselves. And as you move and you breathe and you let that, those two come together your mind is focused on that and letting go of perfection. Like, don’t do a yoga or a martial art or a Qigong that has to be perfect. Like really something that takes you where you are. That’s where I would start because people that have these tendencies are going to be really good at finding reasons, something’s not gonna work for them.
And so to make it accessible, which comes to your point, if it feels good and you’re good at it, do it. Yeah. So, you know, but so I do think connecting the mind and body are really important for people with a cancer diagnosis. And I do advise them to talk to a professional to make sure are the Qigong exercises you’re doing right for you, for your cancer?
There are practitioners all over in every state and they can email me. I’m happy to help them find a practitioner as well. And then you know, the mind, I love the Qigong meditations because they’re so vivid, they’re very visual. So if you have a good imagination, I strongly recommend that Qigong meditations, cuz you will literally see and feel the gunk leaving your body, or you’ll see and feel the beautiful colors and, you know, so I think if you have a good imagination, that’s a great place to start.
I think of my husband when I talk, when I think of my husband, when I talk about the movement, he’s like, I have no idea what I’m supposed to feel. I have no idea what I can do and blah, blah, blah. He’s like that very stuck kind of person. But when he just moves, he’s okay.
Leigh Ann Lindsey: Yeah. Yeah. I love that. Well, I wanna check out the Qigong meditations because just hearing you say how visual and visceral they can be, that really resonates with me, cuz I’m very visual. So I will definitely check them out on your YouTube and make sure that they’re linked in the show notes.
Dr. Juli Kramer: Yeah. And insight timer. I’ve got some beautiful ones on there, so I’ll send you both of those as well.
Leigh Ann Lindsey: I love it. Well, Julie, thank
Dr. Juli Kramer: yeah. Thank you so much. And I just wanna give, one little bit of closing that. It comes down to, again, being open to seeing things in a new way. And if you’re not there yet, that’s okay.
I don’t want anyone to listen to the podcast and go, ah I, you know, this just isn’t for me. And to feel bad because of that’s okay. But I invite them at some point when they get a little memory of it and they’re like, oh, what was that again? To come back to listen, to know that you might not be ready today, but maybe you are a year from now or a month from now, and that there’s no right or wrong, but this is an invitation for you to really unlock your body’s amazing potential.
And I hope they feel that invitation is for them.
Leigh Ann Lindsey: . And just that there are so many modalities out there. There are so many things to support and speaking about emotions, specifically emotional wellbeing,
Dr. Juli Kramer: Yes.
Leigh Ann Lindsey: tcm, qigong, acupuncture, therapy, counseling, EVOX therapy. So there’s no excuse, and I don’t say that to be patronizing, but I say that because if you’re feeling like you just can’t find the right thing.
Keep looking because there are so, so many supportive modalities out there and supportive practitioners out there. So maybe you found a modality, but the practitioners Right. Keep looking because this is so, so critically important.
Dr. Juli Kramer: I love that. And they’re worth it. That’s the last thing I would add. You’re worth it,
Leigh Ann Lindsey: Thank you. Thank you. Yes. You are so worth it. We are so worth it.
We deserve it a hundred percent. Thank you so much, Julie.
Dr. Juli Kramer: Thank you.