What’s bad for the heart is bad for the head….

This article in the BBC news health website reports on research published in Stroke by Joosten et al, looking at whether cardiovascular risk factors are associated with cognitive decline in young and middle aged people. They found that those with a worse cardiovascular risk profile were already showing signs of cognitive impairment in young people aged 35 – 44. The main risk factors were diabetes and smoking. They concluded that what is ‘bad for the heart, is also bad for the brain”. 

This is not surprising of course as our bodies and our organs are not compartmentalised, acting independently of each other, but are very much linked and interconnected. Ideally they work in a highly co-ordinated and interconnected harmonious symphony – fine tuning according to what is needed. Something that is toxic to one part is quite likely going to be detrimental to another part, either directly or as a consequence of causing one system to be out of sync, that then affects other systems. In essence, what is toxic to a part, is toxic to the whole, for the whole cannot be well if the part is not well. 

This makes the idea that alcohol can be good for one part of us (the heart for example) yet detrimental to so many other organs and systems just ludicrous. It is clear that alcohol is a poison to human cells, toxic to many organs and systems, yet we still want to persist in believing that somehow, somewhere it is doing us some good, such is our need for it. If a new soft drink was brought onto the market with the proven harms that alcohol has – well it wouldn’t actually make it onto the market, and if by some mistake it did, it would promptly be withdrawn. Of course as I say that, I am aware that there are soft drinks that are also harming that have made it onto the market – so perhaps my faith in the system ‘to do the right thing’ is unjustified!! But you get my point – the proven harms of alcohol show without doubt that it is toxic to humans – yet, we love to find research that says otherwise just so we can justify our ongoing use of it. 

I have been there too and no amount of research would have stopped me from drinking alcohol as my need for it to keep me numb far outweighed any desire to be healthy or self-caring. It was only when I started to address the underlying reasons for numbing myself and began to expose and heal the buried hurts and wounds that I was able to stop drinking alcohol and never resume. I once would have been an advocate for drinking alcohol, rhyming off every reason in the book to continue with it, even though I knew and saw first hand the harms it did to the human body and the liver in particular. Even that was not enough to turn me away! 

However, there was a huge part missing in my understanding of the human person and why we do the things we do, even when we know they are harming to us. The esoteric and energetic understandings of the human person have expanded my awareness of the human condition, to see why it is we get so lost and behave in ways that are far from caring or loving towards ourselves. The emotional hurts and wounds that we all carry for one reason or another, as they are part and parcel of the human condition, lie at the root of our dis-ease with ourselves and our lives. 

The good news is – that healing is possible, transformation is possible, becoming self-caring instead of self-abusive is possible. Not only does it transform ones relationship with one’s self but also with everyone else. For what we do to ourselves, we do to another and what we do to another, we do to ourselves – this we cannot escape. And what is the start of this healing process? The choice to truly love and accept one’s self in the knowledge that who we are is Love. 

As you ought not to attempt to cure the eyes without the head,

or the head without the body, 

so neither ought you to attempt to cure the body without the soul…

for the part can never be well unless the whole is well. 

Plato (Charmides)


Feel free to add your comments on anything that this post has arisen for you. 



  • Reply
    Bernadette Glass
    4th May 2013 at 10:18 pm

    Thank you Eunice, what really strikes me these days is how little we appreciate just how magnificent the human body truly is. As you say our organs work in ” a highly co-ordinated and interconnected harmonious symphony”. We walk around in the most intricate and delicately balanced organism that science is a long way from truly understanding… this in itself is reason to STOP, honour and care deeply for our bodies, knowing we are part of a bigger system that is truly wonderful.

    It seems that the emotions ‘infect’ our awareness and numb our appreciation of of our true nature. I don’t know of a butterfly or a kangaroo that eats too much or looks for putrid beverages to drink because they have allowed what one of their kind said or did to overwhelm them and shut down their ability to carry on being all that they are as a kangaroo or butterfly…

    Let’s keep appreciating that our body reflects our connectedness to our NATURE, and if we take our eyes off this truth we can be ‘taken out’ and subsumed into beliefs and cultures that create individualistic ideals and beliefs that we become obsessed by. When we forget our true nature we can experience deep pain, loss and worthlessness and reach out for medication in all forms to ease our agony. We look outside of ourselves to find what is already fully present inside!

    Take time to appreciate the magnificence of our human vehicle that reflects a love that is limitless…

    • Reply
      Anne Malatt
      4th May 2013 at 11:07 pm

      I love the image of a drunk butterfly and a kangaroo with it’s belly stuffed full (or vice versa!) It is so true that we NATURALLY know what to do, how to care for ourselves, how to live, and we over-ride this knowing because we don’t want to feel that we have been hurt in the past. The irony is that if we simply care for ourselves in a loving way, we can heal these hurts and we feel great, we feel connected to everyone and everything, and we feel we are a great part of the whole.

    Leave a Reply