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East/West Medicine
Dr. Stephen Sinatra

Stephen Sinatra, M.D. is a board-certified cardiologist and certified bioenergetic analyst, with more than 10 years of postgraduate training in the crucial role that behavior and emotion play in heart disease. For two decades he has been utilizing nutritional, psychological, and other complementary therapies along with conventional treatments in his practice in Manchester, CT.

"I believe that when we're out of balance with anything in our body, if we have intense anger and it's not released, it can cause high blood pressure. If we have incredible sadness and it's not released, it can cause heartbreak. And if you don't release the sadness, heartbreak can cause heart disease. When I became a trained psychotherapist, I looked at this whole mind/body aspect of medicine and embraced the idea that our emotional life is just as important as our physical life. And then there's a spiritual connection as well. Whenever you confront a person with an illness, you have to involve everything, including the spiritual.

"Bioenergetics is the study of energy in one's body. I believe that it's blocked energy that causes illness. When cells pulsate, they're alive and healthy. When they become frozen and stagnant, when they become very contracted, whether that's due to stress or metabolics or environmental toxins, then we get illness. If I'm not breathing properly, and I have stagnant energy in my chest, I can predispose myself to heart disease. A woman who has terrific anger and resentment in her upper body, who has this 'energy lock,' may predispose herself to breast cancer. So bioenergetics is a type of body oriented therapy which enhances energy.

"Bioenergetics is the best kept secret in psychotherapy, because bioenergetics opens your body up. When you open yourself up, when you open your heart, the healing is incredible.

"Whatever one thinks will affect how one feels. The problem is, many times we shut off our feelings off. Every illness has a psychological and a physical component. But patients need to understand that trying to live in the brain is not healing. The healing comes when we get into the body, when we experience our body, and that's why a good doctor will integrate mind/body research to get the person into the whole aspect of healing.

"Since the discovery of penicillin in the late '30s, early '40s, the whole medical industry has become pharmaceutically induced. That can have its advantages, but unfortunately many, many doctors have become prescription writers, and that's not really where good medicine is at. It's good for certain aspects of medicine, but it's not where the real healing comes in.

"When a doctor or a health professional nurtures a patient's own healing process, that's when miracles happen. People are powerful. The body wants to be taken care of. And, remember, the body tells the truth. When you're having an illness, you've got to look at it and say, 'What did I do to influence that or create that?'

"People are screaming for a health practitioner that will see them. Not just their heart or their cancer or their arthritis, but see them; that's what people really want. The health practitioner of the future will have to sit down with the patient and see the whole patient. See them in their emotional, psychological, even spiritual struggle. And when they do that, that's when the real healing takes place."

Program Description
Dr. Stephen Sinatra
Reiki:The Ancient Art
Harvard Vanguard

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Body & Soul is currently airing Monday-Friday at 7:00pm and 8:30pm on PBS YOU.

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