Beliefs, Payoffs, and Effects

As a society, we reward illness. Think back to when you were a child. When you were sick, you undoubtedly received special treatment from Mom and Dad. You got to lay in a warm bed while you should have been standing outside waiting for the bus on a cold morning. You were entitled to lie around in your pajamas, watch TV, and eat popsicles for lunch.

As children, we are also taught that if we feel ill, there is a pill to combat every one of those bad feelings. Then, as we grow older and become parents ourselves, we pass these same myths on to our own children. Suddenly, we are baffled as to why some perfectly good kids turn to drugs to remedy the emotional turmoil of adolescent metamorphosis. The answer to the mystery is the programmed solution to counteract any and all bad feelings with a pill. We are taught to seek pleasure or relief and avoid pain. Thus we are in part responsible for producing that behavior in our children. We must realize that if we are ever to win the war on drugs, it starts with us and our belief systems, not the streets or even our own medicine cabinets. Our belief systems dictate our actions and thus results throughout our lives.

From a very early age, we have been conditioned to equate feeling bad with illness. B. J. Palmer, the developer of chiropractic, once stated, “When man violates man’s laws, we send him to jail. But, when man violates nature’s laws, we send him flowers.” His words are simple, yet paradoxically and powerfully true. If your belief system dictates that if you feel bad, then you will receive attention, we are psychosomatically (mind-body) creating a sick society. Sick people comprising a sick society contribute to or make a sick world. In a sick world, sick people make sick decisions. This is evidenced in every major newspaper today. The encouraging part is that your belief systems, and thus your results, are not fixed. They can change through conscious effort.

Recognize that if you have a headache, your body is not suffering from a lack of aspirin. I know that sounds ridiculous, but think about that for a moment. Our beliefs determine our responses. In this example, the typical response to a headache is to take an aspirin. But why? Once again, the purpose is to counteract the sign or symptom. But did you know that that your body naturally produces every drug artificially produced? Furthermore, it does so in the proper quantities, at the right time, and in the right place.

Feeling and Healing

How you feel is often indicative of a healing process. Your body exhibits many different healing cycles to completely heal. One such cycle is known as the cardinal signs of healing. One of the signs in this cycle is inflammation or swelling. The caveat is if one were to continually interrupt this cycle with, for example, an anti-inflammatory, it will reset. The end result is that the body is never fully allowed to heal.

Because our bodies engage in cyclic healing, health, just like life, is a journey, not a destination. Remember, both health and illness are a result. They are an accumulation of all the decisions you’ve made to this point in your life. Consider an onion. Imagine, if you will, that the core of the onion represents your health potential. As you go through life, using and abusing your body, you build up layers of damage. To get back to your inborn health potential, you must first travel through those outside layers. In other words, on the road back to health, you may reexperience those same things you encountered or felt on your journey away from health. In chiropractic, we call this retracing. This sometimes is a part of the healing process and should not be confused with illness.

A New Paradigm

Therefore the question is not how we stop or counteract the sign or symptom from the outside-in, but why it is present in the first place. Earlier, we discussed how feeling can be related to healing; however, it is not necessarily a reliable gauge of your overall health. For example, what is the number one sign or symptom of a heart attack? Chest pain, jaw pain, shortness of breath? The answer is none of the above. Statistically, the number one sign is death because in just over half of all first-time heart attack cases, the person does not survive. The damage to the heart was already beyond the point of no return. This same concept also explains why many forms of cancer are so lethal. Most people with cancer feel fine for months, even years, before it is detectable. As you can see, if we strictly use how we feel as a gauge of our health, it is not always accurate, and in some cases, it can have devastating consequences. Therefore we should not confine our view of health to how we feel, but moreover to how we are functioning or working from the inside-out because health is actually defined as function.


It is a scientific fact that every function in your body is under the control and influence of your nerve system. In fact, the central part of your nerve system is so important and delicate that it is completely encased in hard bone. Small bones that comprise your spine or backbone are known as vertebrae. Their job is to protect your nerve system. Shifts in these vertebrae can produce endangering pressure and stress on both the spinal cord housed inside the spine as well as on the nerves that come out both the right and left side of the vertebrae at every spinal level. This is known as subluxation. The result of this pressure is a lowered level of function and thus a lowered state of health.

Your body is not a static machine that is prone to breakdown. Your body is self-healing and self-regulating. In chiropractic, we recognize that health itself is a product of life. We call this your innate intelligence. Innate intelligence’s job is to continually adapt, heal, and grow your body. Chiropractors seek to free your nerve system of interference as it is the primary wiring system in your body and communication route for the innate intelligence that coordinates all the functions of your body. This is called the adjustment.

Replacing Feeling with Healing

The first step in any change is recognition. Recall, monitoring your beliefs about health and healing, is imperative because this is the foundation for your actions. Many times, when we feel bad, our bodies are actually exhibiting intelligent healing signs such as sneezing, coughing, and vomiting. Therefore we need to expand our view of health to encompass more than just feeling. Rather than using feeling as the sole indicator of health, we need to focus on function or how our bodies are working from the inside-out. Your nerve system is the master system of your body and is responsible for controlling function. Therefore, to achieve true health, it is essential that you have a clear and healthy nerve system. This ensures that your innate intelligence is fully expressed to coordinate, adapt, and heal your body. This is why chiropractic adjustments are a necessary component to everyone’s health regiment. Instead of being reactive or even preventative with our health, we must be proactive and actively seek to maximize our natural inborn health potential.

Of course, no one likes to feel bad, and the great thing is that the healthier your body grows, the less adaptative healing signs it will exhibit and for a lesser duration. In other words, the healthier you are, typically, the better you will feel overall.

Following are four important action steps you can take right now:

1. Reevaluate your belief systems about feeling in relation to healing and health.
2. Continually monitor, recognize, and, if necessary, change the way you look at illness and health.
3. Ensure that your nerve system is clear of interference through chiropractic adjustments. This will allow your innate intelligence to be fully expressed and will improve function and overall health.
4. Consciously make healthier decisions every day.

By engaging in the actions listed above, you can continually create health and allow your body to function fully, as it was intended to—not just for now, but for a better tomorrow as well. I wish you a healthier, more fulfilling future.

** This article is one of 101 great articles that were published in 101 Great Ways to Improve Your Health. To get complete details on “101 Great Ways to Improve Your Health”, visit

Author's Bio: 

Dr. Andy Kuecher, DC, is a family chiropractor who practices in Brainerd, Minnesota. He is a fellow of the International Chiropractic Pediatrics Association and a member of many other chiropractic organizations. Dr. Kuecher is an author and speaker in the realm of health, philosophy, and human potentiality. His purpose is to empower others with the principles of life and assist them in achieving their maximum inborn potential. He has a vision that one day, empowerment coupled with conscious action will collectively move humanity toward an elevated and enlightened state of being. To schedule a private appointment with Dr. Kuecher, call (218) 828-4166. If you are interested in his workshop series offered to the public as well as to private groups and organizations, visit Be sure to watch for his upcoming books.