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Speak Well Being

Serving hospitals, healthcare and women's groups

For Your Well Being: Mind Over Medicine

Feb. 21, 2013, Vol. 11, Issue 4

Dear Friends,

Many of our speakers have exciting new books coming out this spring, but I wanted to let you know about one of them months in advance because it comes with a fantastic opportunity to include your community in the book tour.  Instead of a traditional book tour to bookstores around the country, Dr. Lissa Rankin wants to get in front of medical audiences of patients, doctors, nurses, and healthcare providers. So she has offered to present the message in her new book, Mind Over Medicine: Scientific Proof You Can Heal Yourself,  (Hay House, 2013), which debuts May 7, to conferences, hospitals, and cancer centers this summer at a nominal cost.

But let me first tell you a little about the book itself and how it came about, and then more about the opportunity to have Dr. Rankin bring this message to your community.

Lissa Rankin, MD


Mind over medicine. Hmmm, you may say you’ve heard that before. You’re right. Mind-body medicine pioneers and leaders in the New Age movement speaker on mind body healing, women's health speaker, Mind Over Medicine speaker, Lissa Rankin, M.D.have been claiming for decades that the mind can heal the body.

As a skeptical, science-minded physician, Dr. Lissa Rankin had her doubts. But she was intrigued too, She decided to dive into the medical literature to see if she could settle the issue and to be satisfied only if she could prove, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that the mind can heal the body. Seeking to move the notion of self-healing from the realm of the magical or even metaphysical, she searched for evidence of clear physiological mechanisms that explain if and how positive thoughts and emotions might translate into a cure for the physical body.

“What I discovered,” she reported, “blew my mind, shifted my paradigm about modern health care, and became the groundwork for my book, Mind Over Medicine: Scientific Proof You Can Heal Yourself.”.

“Loads of data proves that the mind can believe itself well. In clinical trials, we call it ‘the placebo effect.’ Patients treated with placebos don’t just feel better. It’s not just ‘in their heads.’ They’ve actually had warts disappear, bronchi dilate, colons become less inflamed, hair growth on the heads of bald men, ulcers heal, and other measurable physiological phenomena.  We also know that the opposite is true, and the mind can think itself sick, which researchers call ‘the nocebo effect.’ When patients are given injections with saline and told it is chemotherapy, they vomit and lose their hair.” 

You can hear Lissa talk about the nocebo in her 2nd TEDx video, which is available on her profile page on our website. How do such things happen physiologically? In the book and her appearances, she describes discovering the science behind it: how a thought or emotion in the mind, translates into spontaneous repair in the body.

“As it turns out, the body has built in self-repair mechanisms that fix damaged proteins, repair DNA, correct hormonal imbalances, and gobble up cancer cells, infectious agents, and foreign bodies that our bodies are exposed to everyday,” she continues.

“These mechanisms explain the spontaneous remissions that are reported in the medical literature from seemingly ‘incurable’ diseases like Stage 4 cancer, HIV, hypothyroidism, diabetes, and even an untreated gunshot wound to the head. Yet patients often feel powerless to harness these natural self-repair mechanisms.

“Not anymore. In this book, I teach a scientifically-founded six step process you can follow to optimize the body’s capacity to flip on its natural self-repair mechanisms when the body becomes ill. I’ll also be teaching tools for using the power of the mind as preventative medicine, to increase the chance that you will one day die of ‘old age,’ rather than dying too young as the result of disabling of the body’s ability to repair itself.”

What disables the body’s natural self-repair mechanisms? We all know that stress is bad for the body. But do you understand how this works? Loads of data prove that stress comes in different forms – the stress of feeling lonely, work stress, financial stress, marital stress, family stress, the stress of feeling creatively blocked or spiritually disconnected.  Regardless of what triggers it, stress flips on a series of physiological cascades associated with the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis and the “fight or flight” response of the sympathetic nervous system. In other words, whether you’re stressed about money, your marriage, or your job, your body can’t tell the difference between a perceived threat, such as impending bankruptcy, and a real threat, such as getting chased by a lion.

“But here’s the kicker,” Lissa says: 

“The body can only repair itself when the body is in a state of physiological rest. Whenever the body thinks it’s time to run away from the lion (or whatever chronic, repetitive perceived threat it believes itself to be under), it shuts down self-repair. After all, who cares about long term maintenance like killing unwanted cancer cells if you’re about to be eaten by a lion? In this book, I share not just the scientific proof that you can heal yourself, but also tips for using the power of the mind to optimize the body’s natural self-repair mechanisms, so disease prevention and spontaneous remissions aren’t just something that happens randomly, but something you might be able to experience for yourself.”

Now this topic is bound to stir up a buzz — and lots of questions.  In fact, some disturbing questions come up right away, and Lissa has answered them in a four-part blog series, “Is it your fault you can’t heal yourself?”

Part 1: Is it your fault if you get sick and can’t heal yourself? Is it unfair to even suggest that you can heal yourself?

Part 2: If the mind has the power to heal the body – at least sometimes – what does it mean if you’re trying to make your mind healthy – but you’re still sick?

Part 3: What if you’ve done everything and you’re still sick? What does that mean? Have you done something wrong? Is it your fault that you haven’t healed yourself? 

Part 4: One final key point – what’s the difference between healing and curing?

Her message resonates with patients  — they want to be partners in their healing, they want validation of their inner wisdom, they’re looking for the medical establishment to validate what they believe

Her work earned her an invitation recently to present at a Hay House “I Can Do It!” Ignite conference in New York City. Afterward Lissa said,“The best part of sharing my message about mind-body healing at the conference this weekend was that almost everyone who came up afterward to thank me was a doctor, nurse, or other conventional or alternative healthcare provider. That bodes well for healing healthcare.” 

Physicians, nurses, and other healthcare providers will benefit from hearing this message by deepening their relationships with patients, by reaffirming their sense of meaning and purpose in medicine, by reclaiming their roles not just as body technicians, but as true healers, and even by expanding their definition of health to include not just diet, exercise, and regular checkups, but also healthy relationships, a healthy professional life, a healthy spiritual life, and more. Those profound shifts in role and self-definition offer hospitals and their staffs improved outcomes as well as savings in time and money and even potential reductions in procedures and associated risks.

Organizations that sponsor Dr. Rankin’s message will benefit by offering community service, improving community relations, attracting new patients and keeping existing ones loyal. They will also benefit from the free marketing Dr. Rankin’s event will bring them through the extensive online and multi-media promotion that will accompany her book tour One example: she’s being interviewed for the June issues of “O” and SHAPE magazines, and plans are in the works for major media exposure.

Program includes lecture and Q & A. Arrangements will be made for books to be for sale, and Lissa’s publicity arm will provide local tie-in publicity opportunities.

Cost is $1,500 INCLUDING travel (Lissa lives in northern California). If you can provide one or two nights hotel accommodations, that would be appreciated.

First come, first served on event dates. This special fee is only available for dates in June and July, 2013.

Dr. Rankin is committed to bringing this message of hope and healing to patients and healthcare providers as widely as she can. Contact me at 503-699-5031 if you’d like to get on board. Please forward this information to any organization you know of that might benefit.



I got my day at the beach last weekend. In fact, it was an extra day.

The sun was shining brightly when I returned from yoga Friday morning, and we knew that rain was forecast for Saturday. My husband and I looked at each other, checked our schedules and email, and without a second glance, hopped in the car and headed for the Coast.

We went to one of our favorite places, a tiny town called Oceanside, nestled in a cove, with kind of a small town New England vibe to it — at least in my mind.  Beyond the beach in front of town, there’s a narrow, rocky tunnel through the basalt headland to the north, and at low tide you can walk through to a hidden beach studded with rocky outcroppings, where very few people (or dogs) go. I like to go to this semi-private place and let Bella off leash for a run.

The temperature reached 61 degrees Friday, and it was sunny all day long.  I even bared my legs to get some Vitamin D!  On the way home, we bought fresh oysters from a seafood stand in Netarts Bay, and back in Portland we barbecued them on the grill (in the shell) for dinner. Heavenly!  It must have been because they were so fresh. All in all, a wonderful mental health day. I highly recommend it, especially in the middle of winter!

Take care of yourself with a day off for your mind, body and spirit — for your well being and those you love.

Yours truly,


For Your Well Being is published bi-weekly. We bring you insider speaker reports, exclusive stories about special events around the country, meeting planner tips, and fun stuff from the worlds of health and well being. Be well and be in the know!

The Speak Well Being Group is a specialized speakers bureau, focusing on speakers for hospital-sponsored community events, healthcare organizations, conferences and women’s groups. Our speakers are hand-selected. They are not only experts in their fields, they know how to connect with women and give them life-changing information served on a silver platter of joy, camaraderie, with a side of sauce (spicy, of course).

Finding the perfect keynote speaker for your special event or conference is my personal passion, not just once, but year after year. It brings me endless joy to know that your audience was delighted and moved by the speaker we selected together. I’m committed to making the process easy, pleasant and fun.

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