alchemy by amy uk mind over medicine placebo effect book review

The Science of the placebo effect, Mind Over Medicine book review, healing with the power of the mind.

alchemy by amy uk mind over medicine placebo effect book review

How many times, have you eye rolled so hard at that quote you’ve given yourself a headache. Me, about thrice daily for two years, until recently.

The author of this book, Lissa Rankin M.D, summarised so well in this book exactly what I had been feeling, seeing the sentence describe my thoughts in black and white in a book brought tears to my eyes. “When the fear of staying put, exceeds the fear of the unknown, you leap”. Thats exactly what I did, if you want to know more about that see here.

alchemy by amy uk mind over medicine placebo effect book review

I grasped on to hope that the power of positive thinking (and other things) could be a cure for my illness, so I’ve needed support along the way to put myself in the right mind frame, I first heard of this book, after finding a TED talk by Rankin, on the placebo effect.

So, the placebo effect is when, a dud medicine or product elicits a response from the recipient, that brings about the the anticipated effects from a given  product. For example, giving someone salt water and saying it is pain relief, the person then experiences pain relief, even though no pain medicine had been administered.

Haven’t you ever thought about the placebo effect and questioned why it occurs? If you haven’t, do it now and I bet you can only come up with one answer, it’s all in your head. So quite literally, people everywhere are imagining themselves well all of the time, in real life and scientific studies. I want me a piece of that!

How many times, have you been to the Doctors or the hospital, and left feeling worse than when you arrived I don’t mean following surgery, just a verbal consultation. You tell the Doctor your symptoms and fears, for them to mutter a half hearted, “we could try“, or  “maybe XYZ could work”, or the worst “we just don’t know.…”. Those words can put the fear of god in to the steeliest of hearts. The terror of putting your trust in to others to be told that the experts of health and medicine, don’t know how to help you, is a fear you’d not wish on your worst enemy.

This book, addresses the science behind the placebo effect. It presents cold, hard scientific facts that even the worlds leading scientists cannot attribute an explanation to, beyond that it is the power of our own mind that has caused positive health changes to previously unhealthy bodies. The biggest sceptic of the power of positive thinking couldn’t read this book without being swayed closer to the belief that it really is mind over matter at times. I really appreciated the way the science was presented without bias, for example contradicting studies, or flaws in the logic/theory were addressed too.

I have recently read both The Secret and The Power, which addresses energy as love. There is only one energy and that is love, or that our beliefs, words and ways can literally affect the cells in our body. I found this book to be almost a crossover to those, which at times left me mouth agape. Rankin doesn’t reference either of these books, or (from what I can remember!), doesn’t address the law of attraction either, I was awestruck to realise, two very different paradigms of beliefs, crossed over so much, there MUST be some truth in the two..

Rankin doesn’t make out in any way shape or form that positive thinking is a tiny thing to do, or that it is a miracle cure, she explains why it is so much more than just choosing to be happy. It is a very real scientific approach to the power of the mind, which will have your eyes wide open or pouring with tears rather than eye rolling at my first picture!

My only criticism, is that there are some big science words in there that had me ?? but if you persevere a few sentences down, it becomes clear what has been written about. I was surprised to find the second half of the book to be about helping you put the power of the mind to practice. Rankin explains towards the end she is not offering a cure to a disease, but assures the reader if you follow her technique, you’ll at the very least heal.

If self help techniques are not your thing, but illness plagues you, I urge you to read this book.  I can 110% assure you, that reading it absolutely gives hope in curing disease, and when the last of your hope has been taken away, this will more than restore it.

Amy x

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