Alternative approaches to wellness and healing abound in coastal Delaware

By Pam George  |  Photograph by Carolyn Watson
From the April 2018 issue

Feature-HEAL Natural Resources - Delaware Beach LifeWhen doctors at Johns Hopkins Hospital diagnosed Rachel Grier-Reynolds with stage 4 lung cancer, they gave her eight months to live. “They told me, do all the things I wanted to do: basically enjoy the time I had left here,” recalls the Lewes resident. So that’s exactly what she’s done — for the past 10 years.

Many physicians would agree that Grier-Reynolds, who was diagnosed in 2008, has defied the odds. But few ask her why. “I was shocked at how little interest there is from the medical profession about why I haven’t died,” she says.

While she’s undergone several rounds of chemo­therapy and radiation, she’s also used nutritional supplements, self-reiki, acupuncture and heart-focused meditation. She’s learned the mood-boosting power of a smile and the calmness that comes from picturing a passel of soft puppies.

Western medicine might not be knocking on Grier-Reynolds’ door for an explanation, but there are plenty of coastal residents who’d be interested in her story. For proof, witness the turnout to see the documentary “Heal” this past November. Screened at Lefty’s Alleys & Eats, “Heal” (now available on iTunes), examines how thoughts, beliefs and emotions affect health and the ability to overcome illness.

In all, more than 500 people attended the three showings, which benefited Minds Over Matter, a Rehoboth Beach-area organization that promotes the benefits of mindfulness to improve concentration, reduce stress, increase self-awareness and strengthen impulse control.

Dr. Krista Griffin, a chiropractor and co-founder of Minds Over Matter, called the local response to the film “amazing.” Not only are people more open to the power of the mind to help themselves heal, but they want to know how to do it, she says.

Dr. Uday Jani, a panelist at the event, isn’t surprised. “Everyone is getting tired of taking a pill for every problem that they have,” says the Milton-area internist. “They want other ways and means that are less toxic to the body without long-lasting side effects.”

And, increasingly, many of these ways and means are available in coastal Delaware.

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