Qigong and Magnetics -

Energy Therapies

Energy therapies are healing techniques that use various forms of energy, such as sound or light energy, to treat symptoms and disease. The theory is that when energy blockages or imbalances are present, illness and disease can develop. Electromagnetic Field Therapy Energy therapies are alternative therapies that aim to create a state of balance, health and peace in a person. Most alternative and complementary energy therapies are based on the concept that a subtle, life-force energy pervades all living things. The most popular forms of energy therapy are music therapy, Therapeutic Touch and Reiki. When people talk about energy medicine, they are usually referring to an energy field that hasn’t been proven to exist. The National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM) distinguishes proven energy fields from the unproven. NCCAM uses two classifications: veritable energy, which is measurable and scientifically proven, and putative energy, which is not measurable with current technology The word putative means generally believed to be something; something that is commonly accepted or supposed. All energy therapies are considered complements not replacements to traditional cancer treatment. Energy therapies cannot cure or directly treat cancer. These therapies can help people relax and may improve quality of life among people with mesothelioma and other cancers. Examples of veritable energy include sound energy vibration, electromagnetic energy such as light, magnetism and monochromatic radiation lasers. Doctors regularly use veritable energy to diagnose and treat cancer. Examples include magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), lasers used during surgery, radiation therapy and photodynamic therapy. Less-researched therapies in this category include magnetic therapy and sound energy therapy. Therapies based on putative energy, such as Reiki and Therapeutic Touch, reflect the belief that people possess a subtle form of life-force energy that isn’t measurable by modern science. This subtle, putative energy is often called qi in traditional Chinese medicine, prana in ayurvedic medicine and spirit in Judeo-Christian traditions. Some people refer to it as vital life-force energy or the bioenergetic field which often gets confused with bioenergetic exchanges, the transfer of energy among organisms and their environment. Balancing this proposed life-force energy is the goal of energy therapies. The same goal is shared by more popular mind-body therapies yoga, qigong and tai chi and certain healing systems, such as ayurveda and traditional Chinese medicine. Acupuncture is also based on the belief of life-force energy. However, current research is finding plausible biological explanations for the health effects of acupuncture. Some scientists propose that veritable energy may be the only energy at play when therapeutic benefit is experienced through energy therapy. Physicist, astronomer and philosopher Victor Stenger, Ph.D., has said, “The idea that matter alone can do the job has never proved popular.” Whether a subtle, separate energy exists does not change the fact that many people feel therapeutic benefits from energy therapies. The placebo effect may be at play. Since a placebo has a measurable effect in many scientific studies, many people believe that energy therapies can help people with cancer regardless of lacking evidence for life-force energy. Various physiological actions might underlie the physical benefits of energy therapies. For example, acupuncture and acupressure points are often located at sites with a high density of nerve and blood vessels, commonly between or at the edges of muscle groups. Stimulation of these areas has physiological effects on the nervous system, musculoskeletal system and endocrine system. The effects of touch, which stimulate the release of feel-good chemicals like oxytocin in the brain, might also play a role.