“Can the mind really heal the body?”
This is the question Dr. Lissa Rankin first asks during her TEDx Talk. And this question takes us into the under-explored research behind the effectiveness of mind-body connection to heal.
Normally we only post videos and articles from our own authors, but this TEDx talk is just so incredible, we had to share it with you.
Dr. Lissa Rankin explores the awesome potential of your body’s self-healing ability and shares some astounding studies that will blow your mind.
The Placebo Effect — And The Nocebo Effect
Most of us have probably heard of the Placebo Effect. The dictionary defines the Placebo Effect as:
a beneficial effect produced by a placebo drug or treatment, which cannot be attributed to the properties of the placebo itself, and must therefore be due to the patient’s belief in that treatment.
But according to Dr. Rankin, most doctors and experts in the scientific community are looking at the Placebo Effect in the wrong way. They’re looking at it as a simple obstacle to overcome in their research, to prove that whatever treatment they have is actually more effective.
Yet, Dr. Rankin argues, the Placebo Effect is a powerful indicator of the body’s ability to heal itself through self-belief. We have a huge amount of evidence that the Placebo Effect is real since the 1950s — from anecdotes of spontaneous remission to people getting better after swallowing sugar pills in clinical trials.
We also have quite a bit of evidence to show that it’s opposite is real, too: the Nocebo Effect.
Dr. Rankin says of the Nocebo Effect:
When the mind believes that something bad is going to happen to the body, then it comes to manifest.
She shares two incredible, powerful stories of both the Placebo Effect and the Nocebo Effect in this video — and reveals why they’re both so effective (Hint: we don’t need to lie to people in order for the mind-body connection to heal our bodies).
The Relaxation Response
Self-belief really does go a long way.
Dr. Rankin doesn’t argue against seeking treatment from the mainstream medical system — in fact, she’s a physician herself. She walked away from a very successful career because she couldn’t understand why some of her patients who lived in one of the healthiest towns in the US weren’t healing.
She shares that healing doesn’t just come from pills or surgeries but that the process, the healing process, can turn on when we believe that we can get better. Our mind and body are able to relax enough to enable recovery when we feel cared and nurtured for.
She calls this the Relaxation Response, and she describes the process looks like.
If you (or anyone you’ve ever known) has ever had any doubt at all about your mind’s power to heal your body, then this fascinating TEDx Talk will make you think twice.
What do you think about the power of the mind-body connection?
Share your thoughts with us in the comments below.