I am a 31-year-old mother of two. For the past two years I have felt unwell. I suffer from severe fatigue, bloating headaches, palpitations, low libido, anxiety and I haven’t had a period for nearly a year. The registrar at the local hospital thinks I may have polycystic ovaries (l am waiting for test results). Could you offer me any advice?
From what you describe, it seems you have what I call ‘Ali syndrome’. This centres on problems with your neck, which is the gateway between your brain and your body. The problems can be triggered by stress, a whiplash injury or fall, working at a computer, driving, insomnia or sleeping with two pillows. As a result, some of the vertebrae in the neck become slightly displaced, compressing the vertebral arteries that carry blood to the brain, so the blood supply to the base of the brain is diminished.
This part of the brain controls heart rate, breathing, the release of hormones via the pituitary gland, balance, sleep, emotions, vision, hearing and other neurological and emotional functions. If this area is malfunctioning it can lead to a host of problems such as you describe.
Regarding the possibility of polycystic ovaries: the pituitary gland controls the reproductive hormones. If it produces an excess of follicle-stimulating hormone, this may result in stimulation of the ovarian follicles. Which lead to cysts. Thus, pituitary malfunction, as in Ali syndrome, can cause polycystic ovaries.
Based on 20 years’ experience, I have found that a holistic approach is effective. This consists of yoga, massage, dietary modifications and meditation. The most useful yoga exercises are salutation to the sun, cobra, turtle, semi-bridge, boat, and plough (these are shown in my video, Dr Ali’s Lifestyle Programme. Do them first thing in the morning.
Massage of the neck and shoulders is essential. Using a massage oil, such as Dr Ali’s Lifestyle Oil , ask your partner to focus on the muscles of the neck behind the ear lobes; do not massage in front of the ear lobes because this may damage important nerves and arteries. With the fingertips, rub deeply down the muscles of the neck, shoulders and upper back, then across in horizontal movements from the side of the neck to the centre of the cervical spine. Do this for ten minutes, three or four times a week, last thing at night. Next, put a hot water bottle wrapped in a towel under your neck, and lie on the floor or your bed for two minutes on each side with your knees together, then four minutes on your back. Make sure that the heat is distributed to all the muscles.
A head and scalp massage twice a week last thing at night using an Ayurvedic hair oil called Bhringraj, will relax you, as well as improve the blood flow to the head. When you have a bath or shower, massage your temples and jaw – if they are tight, it impairs the circulation of brain fluids.
HOW TO COMBAT ‘ALISYNDROME’ WITH DIET AND MEDITATION
Avoid any drinks that contain caffeine, because they make the muscles tense up.
* Don’t consume excess sugar because it tends to make you hyperactive.
* Use as little salt as possible and don’t eat any processed, canned or preserved food, which contains a lot of salt as well as preservatives and additives.
* Drink plenty of still pure room temperature water, between meals.
* Don’t drink alcohol – it dehydrates your body.
* Take a ten-minute break every hour when you are on the computer or driving.
* Do head rolls and shoulder shrugs at work.
* Take a brief siesta in the afternoon: lie on the floor with your head resting on a small pile of books or magazines, or re3t your head on your desk, cushioning it on your folded arms.
* Protect your neck from trauma: wrap it in a scarf and do not lift heavy things.
* Find a few moments every day to meditate: lie flat on the floor or on your bed with a low pillow and relax. Breathe in for a slow count of three and out for a slow count of six. In your mind’s eye, focus on the centre of your forehead just above the bridge of your nose. Imagine you are looking at the orange sphere of the setting sun. As you breathe in and out slowly focusing gently on the orange circle, imagine that the muscles of your neck, shoulders, back, arms, buttocks, thighs and leg are relaxing and expanding so that they are soft and long and the blood is flowing through them. If you feel yourself drifting away, focus on your breathing and bring your mind back to the sun and your body.
* Enhance your awareness and relax your brain by inhaling the fresh tang of a cut whole lime.
* If your neck is painful, apply white tiger balm to the sore areas.