The Stickiness Factor
PART 2 of 4 articles
According to Wikipedia, the Stickiness Factor is: “The specific content of a message that renders its impact memorable. Popular children’s television programs such as Sesame Street and Blue’s Clues pioneered the properties of the stickiness factor, thus enhancing effective retention of educational content as well as entertainment value.” This article will explore some of the factors that we believe are “sticky” (as per Malcolm Gladwell’s “Tipping Point” book). There are critical factors which are helping America alter the course of its present medical system.
What is “Sticky” in the realm of Medicine? What factors are moving the idea and use of various forms of natural medicine from the “fringe” to the “mainstream”?
Sticky Factor #1: WHEN YOU “SEE” IT
Images that Change Everything
If you’ve seen pictures of thousands of chickens with their beaks removed, stuffed in tiny cages in a warehouse, aka a commercial “Confined Animal Feeding Operation”, you’ll never get that picture out of your head. And for those of you who haven’t already seen this photo, this is a rat from Serelini’s 2-year study. These horrific tumor masses occurred 22% more frequently in the GMO-corn-fed rats. That was much longer than the few weeks the industry study did it so before calling it “good”. This image is indelibly imprinted in my memory…and now in yours. Pictures are powerful.
An Italian researcher, Mr. Serelini’s, study results, linking GMO corn containing Roundup’s main toxic chemical Glyphosate to cancer, were published in an esteemed medical journal, and a year later it was retracted and he was fired from his job at the university research lab. There was thought to be serious pressure from people in the biotech industry primarily, Monsanto, the source of Roundup and many GMO seeds. However, last year, after an extended court battle in Italy, Mr. Seralini regained status and his landmark study was republished. See http://www.gmoseralini.org/en/
Dr. David practices functional medicine at the clinic via his LIVE BLOOD EDUCATION SESSIONS. We have empirically found that about 70% of people who see and learn about the health of their own blood make lifestyle changes to improve it. It’s impactful and irrefutable evidence that what they are doing is causing either good or bad results at a cellular level. And if they continue for 21+ days, they have likely formed new habits that STICK.
Sticky Factor #2: WELLNESS – PREVENTION MEDICINE
I frequently hear Dr. David saying “The best way to treat “X” disease is DON’T GET IT IN THE FIRST PLACE!” Practicing Wellness is a Body/Mind/Spirit focus. It starts with body and mind awareness. It requires active Learning, Selection and Consistency. Practicing health habits such as exercise, feeding your body the nutrition it needs, and meditation, petting your dog or kitty, hugging someone, prayer and walks in nature all count. I’m hearing you say it in your mind right now “Ah….time for a walk on the beach!”
There are Corporate Wellness initiatives which design programs to encourage their employees to exercise and quit smoking. Silver Sneakers, an activity-based program which pays for services such as gym privileges, is covered by most Medicare plans. So, on this level, the Government is truly supportive of Wellness.
And we have more and more people come to our “Food as Medicine” classes at the clinic who state their reason for coming is “Aging Well” or “Radiant Health”. These people want to know what and how to eat to support their bodies to stay healthy.. They are committed to living well into their later decades, not simply living a long time in ill health. Folks like this will be out their golfing in their 90’s as I expect to be dancing!
Sticky Factor #3 MORE M.D.’s “SWITCHING”
Just the other day one of my friends mentioned that her M.D. recommended an herbal product called butterbur. This was after the prescription the doctor had given her for migraines didn’t work and caused side effects. Her condition improved immediately with the butterbur. And it was probably cheaper than the prescription.
Another person (the same day) mentioned that her M.D. had just left a group practice and had opened her own office as an Integrated Specialist. This doctor is now practicing BOTH natural and allopathic (Western) medicines. This is happening more rapidly in some areas of the country than others, but count on it….the trend is growing! And as they practice BOTH medicines, they are finding many positive “side effects”. For example, treating someone for Alzheimers’ using coconut oil may also help the patient lose weight and have healthier gums! This is certain: As the practitioners of the “old medical model” switch or become more inclusive of natural medicine, they bring huge credibility and outreach impact with them, e.g. “Stickiness” and People Power.
One large healthcare provider, Kaiser Permanente, with a clinic facility on Del Prado in Cape Coral and various doctors around the area, is leading the pack on a national level. In the last five years Kaiser began to cover acupuncture and chiropractic. They are very supportive of Preventive Care in those realms and more. For example, pap smears used to require a co-pay. Now they are fully covered. Kaiser also actively educates about Wellness for seniors and promotes the Silver Sneakers programs available in many states.
Sticky Factor #4: IT WORKS!
It’s a normal day at Lotus Blossom Clinic when several patients are trying acupuncture for the first time. Many of them were told by a friend or relative that acupuncture (or Food, or Massage, or Energy Healing) works. According to GreenMed Info’s research, “Acupuncture happens to be one of the most extensively supported alternative modalities, with clinical trial data supporting its value in over 100 different conditions.”
Yes, if you have pain, stress, something common, unusual or odd, acupuncture nearly always helps. And Chinese Medicine involves more than acupuncture. Food-as-Medicine is one of our focuses too. Dr. David is also trained in Chinese Medical Massage called “Tui Na”.
Chinese Medicine is used by 25% of the world’s population for Primary Care situations. It is centuries old. And it’s more than anecdotal evidence. Modern science is validating it all the time. One very recent, double-blind, placebo study (the gold standard approach to scientifically verify something) found Acupuncture to be much more effective—and 43% quicker acting–than Injected Morphine! http://www.greenmedinfo.com/blog/acupuncture-beats-injected-morphine-pain-groundbreaking-study?page=1
JOIN US FOR NEXT MONTH’S ARTICLE ON THE TREND AND MOVEMENT TOWARD MORE NATURAL MEDICINE. We’ll cover the CONTEXTS –the structures, containers, and other motivating circumstances supporting Natural Medicine.
All Articles in this series:
- #1 The People: Knowledge, connection, and salesmanship behind the New Thing.
- #2 The Stickiness Factor: What makes the New Thing memorable and desirable?
- #3 The Context: Infrastructure and circumstances of the time that support the New Thing.
- #4 New Medicine: Guiding Lights of the Future
By Lotus Blossom clinic, serving Fort Myers, Cape Coral, Lehigh Acers, with acupuncture, massage, reiki, food healing, medicinal food, Chinese medicine, and energy healing.