...practical diagnostics, that's what!
Today I had my Physiology 2 class. While first semester's Physiology was all theoretical, this term it's all 'hands on'. We'll be learning to take vitals (i.e. heart rate, blood pressure, internal temperature, and respiratory rate) in only two weeks. For this class we were required to purchase a stethoscope (to listen to the lungs, heart, etc), a sphygmomanometer (to measure blood pressure), a tuning fork (to measure the ability to hear), a thermometer (to measure internal temperature), and a reflex hammer (to measure neural function (as reflexes are the result of neural synapses)).
Why are practical sessions important? Well, according to the Chinese proverb shown by my Physiology professor:
I hear and I forget.
I see and I remember.
I do and I understand.
As promised, I thought I'd do a little recap of some of the highlights of what I learned last semester. Now, a complete recap would probably take me an entire day to write (I learned so much!), so this one is abbreviated by A LOT. Nevertheless, here are some of my favorites:
- Honey is so good for you due to it's anti-microbial and soothing proprieties. If you crave sweetener, this sweetener is full of healthy phytochemicals that you shouldn't feel guilty drizzling it over toast and whisking it into a hot beverage.
- For good prostate health, men should drink 1/2 cup of tomato juice (low to no sodium is best) with a tablespoon of olive oil and a teaspoon each of black pepper and tumeric whisked in. Serve with a stalk of celery and you've got 100% natural men's medicine... in a glass!
- If you want to spruce up your diet without much work, try incorporating more herbal tea into your diet. The aromatic compounds in mint herbs are released upon heating, so try covering these teas as they steep so you don't lose their ultra healthy components. As my Botanical Medicine professor said, drinking good quality herbal tea is (almost) equivalent eating a fruit or vegetable.
- So much of wellness depends on our emotional state. The mind-body connection is extremely powerful. When feeling sick, it is important to evaluate the mental and emotional aspects of our life, in addition to the physical. Positive thinking is very healing too.
- The signs and symptoms associated with the common cold or flu are not caused by the pathogens, but are caused by the body in order to speed up healing. Coughing, sneezing, and fevers are all done by your immune system and are needed to fight infection.
- Evidence-based research is really overrated. With the majority of research studies being funded by pharmaceutical companies, there seems to be a lot of bias in the research publication world... Also, with Naturopathic Medicine emphasizing the uniqueness of each and every individual, how can the results of mass clinical trials be applied to everyone?
- The human body is oh-so fascinating. The complexity of it all was exposed to me during my fall Anatomy lessons. For instance, I learned how carpal tunnel syndrome can be the result of a posture problem, with the real origin of the problem coming from somewhere in the neck. I also loved learning about the palpable features on the body, although it's kind of weird poking and prodding yourself in order to help memorize the material.
And because I don't want to be blogging all night long, I'm going to end there... for now.