Principally, there is a big difference between being ill and lacking health.

When we lose control or if we are poorly educated about how to maintain our health, then unhealthy living will lead to a lack of health, which is quite distinct from illness. A lack of health can be corrected merely by re-education and rearrangement of our lifestyles, whereas illness generally requires intervention or treatment. A broad example would be that of a smoker. Inhaling 20 cigarettes a day will initially lead to an increase in the likelihood of coughs, colds, sinusitis, sore throats, which may indicate a lack of health and can be corrected by not smoking. If these early warning signs are ignored then the destruction of lung tissue is inevitable and conditions such as chronic bronchitis, emphysema and cancer may, and usually do, set in. This is illness and requires intervention rather than simply refraining from smoking.

Being well and staying well is a matter of correct education. If we know what we are doing and how to encourage those around us to do the same, then staying well is not that difficult. Persuading those close to us may be relatively easy but, when dealing with large corporations, government and industries, keeping ourselves from pollutants and toxins is, unfortunately, much harder to do. The human being responds to ill-health in three ways.

Elimination: a process that throws things out of the body. Mucus production during a cold, vomiting or diarrhoea, sweating and persistent urination are all elimination reactions.

Reaction: when the body produces symptoms that do not seem to be throwing anything out. Skin rashes such as eczema, asthma, abdominal colic or cramps are a few examples.

Retention: when the body holds on to problems by forming lumps and bumps or stones in the gall bladder or kidney.

Good health is about a balance of all three, although individuals tend towards one type more than another.

It is not more healthy or better to exhibit any one of these three response types because different conditions will be more dangerous in different response groups. A retentive type of person is more likely to be able to deal with problems that stay in the body and will handle cancer cells more effectively than, say, an eliminator who is more geared to throwing things out. Furthermore, food poisoning or a condition such as cholera, which encourages fluid loss through vomiting and diarrhoea, may be far more devastating to a body that habitually throws things out than to one that is geared to holding things in. In contrast, an infection in a retentive type is liable to stay in the system for longer than that of an eliminator.

Reactions are usually warnings and the initiation of a repair process either depends on an elimination or the body being able to deal with the problem internally.

Individuals should establish their type and tendency and use this knowledge to enhance any treatment choices. Establishing your body type will also relieve anxiety. If you are a retentive sort then most lumps and bumps are not likely to be cancerous. If you are an eliminative type a stomach upset should not last very long because the ‘bug’ will be thrown out rapidly.