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The Doctor of the Future is the Patient – Dr. Sachin Patel. [Podcast]

podcast vagus nerve Dec 09, 2020

Sachin Patel is a father, husband, philanthropist, speaker, author, and plant medicine advocate. He is the founder of The Living Proof Institute through which he pioneered a revolutionary approach to patient-centered healthcare.

Dr. Patel asserts that “the doctor of the future is the patient” and he has committed himself to helping others raise their consciousness, activate their “inner doctor,” and initiate their deepest healing through a combination of unique methodologies.

He also coaches hundreds of practitioners around the world so that they are empowered to deliver affordable and inspired care to their communities through his Perfect Practice Mentorship Program.  

This enlightening episode includes discussions on such topics as the emerging world of functional medicine, how to “reboot” unhelpful mental patterns, and some little-known therapies for strengthening the vagus nerve and the parasympathetic nervous system.

To learn more about Sachin Patel and his forward-thinking work, visit www.30in30.org or www.thelivingproofinstitute.com


Transcript

Jim Donovan:

Hey there. This is Jim Donovan. Welcome to the show. I am so glad you’re here. Today, we have a very special guest, Dr. Sachin Patel.

Jim Donovan:

Sachin is most notably a father, a husband, philanthropist, functional medicine practice success coach, international speaker, and author. His philosophy is that the doctor of the future is the patient. And he is actively doing whatever it takes to keep people out of the medical system and empower them through education, self-care, and remapping their mindset. This episode is packed with some wonderful information, I cannot wait for you to hear it. And let’s get started. Dr. Patel. Welcome to the show. I am so glad to have you here. How are you today?

Dr. Sachin Patel:

Jim, I’m doing amazing. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you for having me. I’m excited for our dialogue and conversation today.

Jim Donovan:

Oh, thank you. Same here. I was looking through your materials and got very excited when I started to read all about the Living Proof Institute. I really think my listeners are going to enjoy hearing all about what you have to offer. Where are you today?

Dr. Sachin Patel:

I’m in Mississauga, Ontario, which is about half an hour West of Toronto, Ontario in Canada.

Jim Donovan:

That’s great. I love the Toronto area. I’ve been there many times. Hey, I was wondering, I saw that you have a very beautiful family and I’m wondering just, how are you guys doing through this crazy year?

Dr. Sachin Patel:

This has been a very interesting, fascinating, telling year for us in terms of our family unit. And we’ve bonded, we’ve gotten closer and closer and closer. My son actually had his first official day at schools since April, or March rather, just on Monday. And he went back to school. He had an exemption to wear a mask, and he was the only kid in his class not wearing a mask, and it was just totally odd. And he was ostracized and it was just really, really strange. So we’re actually going to be sending him to a Waldorf school starting next week. Secretly, it’s where we wanted him to go, and we sent him back to his typical Montessori school or his previous Montessori school because of his friends and he realized what was more important to him.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

So I was so proud of him when he came home and said, “Dad, I really want to go to the Waldorf school,” because it’s going to help him express his highest gifts. And he’s very right-brain dominant, and I feel like most academic settings, especially at that age, he’s 10, so he’s in grade five, they tend to be very left-brain dominant. I feel that there’s technology that can handle a lot of our left brain thinking for us nowadays, and what’s missing in the world is the right brain activity. He loves music, he loves art, he loves creating things out of wood and being in the forest, and that’s his jam. So we definitely are pretty proud of making that decision and moving him in the direction of him becoming his highest self.

Jim Donovan:

That’s a beautiful thing. And all that right brain creativity, I mean, that’s where the problem solving is, making things out of nothing. Waldorf is such a great school. I’ve taught at many of them, I’ve done trainings for their teachers, and their system is… I wish I had that system when I was a kid, they do so many good things for that part of a person.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

Yeah. You know what? We took him over to drop off the application, and they introduced him to his future classmates and he walks in and they had a big mushroom drawn on the board because they were going to go mushroom foraging that day and collect fruiting bodies and create spore prints, which is something that we do at home. So it’s kind of an extension of our home and surrounding yourself with other families who have like-minded values, who are learning about nature and the ecosystem and music and all kinds of other ways to celebrate our beautiful existence, which I find more and more doesn’t happen these days in school.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

I know that’s a whole different conversation and something that I’m working on helping address, and I know you’re helping on working address that. Yeah, so that’s where we’re at with this whole shutdown and pandemic. Our business has always been online, or at least for the last few years it’s been online, so for us, it was not a huge shift there, but the big shift for us was Devin being at home, and it just allowed us to bond a lot more.

Jim Donovan:

It’s true. I’ve got three kids, one is in college now and two are at home, but just the walks, like going out for the walk together and the chill time, just that face time where we weren’t really, at least for many of the months, not running anywhere, which is so unusual for our entire life. It’s always been, get in the car, practice this and that. And everything just, it slowed down. I don’t want to say that I’m glad that there’s a pandemic because it’s absolutely awful, but there are parts of it that I am so grateful that I get to have, which really is that time.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

Yeah. I agree. I wrote a post and this was right when everything was starting at the beginning of April, and I said, “You wanted more time with your family? You got it. You want it to read that book you’ve got and didn’t have the time, now you have it. You wanted to write that book, and now you’ve got the time to do it.” So for people who, and I understand this affects people differently, so I want to be sensitive to that, I’m not ignorant to that, but I feel like this was almost the year the world stood still and it brought us all to our knees to recognize and realize what’s important to us and what world we want to step back into or what world we’re willing to create for ourselves and for our families.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

So I feel like this is a great rebirth for a lot of people, and we can fight for the old, or we can create something beautiful moving forward. And I know you and I are both trying to create an even more beautiful world than the one we already live in.

Jim Donovan:

Well, this is the thing, I can tell from your work that you’re interested in helping people realize their totality, the best we can in this human existence. We can help people and help ourselves access the deepest parts of us that tend to get covered up by busy and they get covered up by noise and drama and the past. So I think it’s interesting that we get a year that we’ve never experienced before, where we at least have an opportunity to stop. I don’t know that I’ve done a great job of it all the time, but it stays. It’s not like a day of stopping, it’s a lot of days and weeks.

Jim Donovan:

I’m finding either I can roll with it or I can block it, and when I block it, I tend to suffer more.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

Yeah. The thing is, I use nature as my guide. Mother nature is the most successful thing that we’re aware of, it’s withstood everything that this planet has been through and there it is every single day. And the principle that I like to use is that the trees don’t plan their quarter, they don’t plan how much they’re going to grow that quarter. They grow every single day given whatever circumstances are given to them, and that’s one of the rules of nature, is like, “Hey, let’s make the absolute most of whatever circumstance and situation we’re in.” Now, I will be totally honest that this is getting a little bit old because I do miss traveling, I do that quite a bit. I do miss seeing my friends in person and spending a weekend with them, but all we can do is make the most of what we have right now.

Jim Donovan:

Yeah. I think there’s something about wanting, longing, in that state of longing that I don’t know, it makes me grateful. It makes me grateful for what I do get to do. I’m a musician, I’m in a band. We hadn’t played since early February, and we finally got to do a show outside where people were in a big field all in these little pods together. Everybody was cool about what they were doing with their personal space, no problems there. I remember just being on stage with my guys and just looking at them going, “Oh, I’m just so glad I get to do this at least one time this year.”

Jim Donovan:

So yeah, I’m definitely hearing you on that part. I guess we’ll all get to find out together how things progress. You’ve got so many cool things going on, you’re a philanthropist, you are a functional medicine practice success coach, an international speaker, bestselling author. Tell me a little bit about, how did you land on this path?

Dr. Sachin Patel:

Well, I think it’s my Dharma, I’ll chalk it up to that, which is living in my highest truth and doing the best that I can every single day and every single moment. I started off as a chiropractor, and I’m still a chiropractor. And that was based on the philosophy that the body heals itself and really all we have to do is get out of the way of that. I started off working with athletes in a sports-based clinic, so that was my first real job, if you will. And we were working with athletes who had soft tissue injuries, repetitive strain, injuries, things of that nature. And that landed me on the news in a good way. And as a result of that news piece, we ended up having a whole bunch of people call our office.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

Normally, we’d get referrals and things like that, but we had a whole bunch of new people call our office after watching this news report. And the news report was about elbow pain, specifically tennis elbow and golfer’s elbow. And every single person that called in, when they finally came in, I came to the realization that none of them, except one person actually, had elbow pain, and none of them had sports injuries. They were some of the most disabled and dysfunctional people in our community. So we went overnight from seeing some of the healthiest people in town to some of the sickest people in town.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

I didn’t have any tools or resources to help them, but I knew they could be helped. I couldn’t refer them anywhere because they’d been to everybody, but I knew something could be done. And that’s when I serendipitously started getting emails from Dr. Ron Grisanti, who would later become my mentor about functional medicine. And he was sharing case studies of people that he was helping, and these people sounded very similar to the people that were coming in to see us at this point. And so I took the training for my own interest and I said, “Hey, I don’t know when I’m going to need this or who I’m going to need this for, but let me take this training that he’s offering.” And I became part of his first graduating class of students.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

And since then, once my mind was expanded, I’ve incorporated functional medicine into everything that I do. And for those of you that don’t know what functional medicine is, it’s the medicine that it seems so obvious when I share this, it’s the medicine we’ve always longed for, always wanted, and it’s the way medicine should be. And it’s essentially root cause and personalized medicine. So we look for the root cause mechanisms that are contributing to disease. And these can be boiled down to two really things, either toxicity or deficiencies. So you’re either toxic with something that your body doesn’t know what to do with, so it could be heavy metals, it could be chemicals. In our environment, it could be stress that you’re toxic with.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

Or it could be something that you’re deficient, in and that could be sleep, that could be sunshine, it could be a connection with Gaia and mother nature, it could be a deficiency of vitamins and minerals. And so we always find the root cause first. I also want to say that there’s almost always an emotional component tied to somebody’s chronic health challenges. So we look at that, and then we also create a personalized, individualized solution for the patient. So if patient Dave comes in and patient Sally comes in, they might have the same diagnosis of diabetes, and in a traditional medical model, they’re going to get essentially an algorithm of care based on their diagnosis.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

In functional medicine, we look at the individual and look at all the facets that makes up that person’s life, because we are the embodiment of all these different facets, like a diamond. A diamond has multiple facets to it. And so we look at all these different facets, how are they sleeping? What are their relationships like? What trauma have they experienced? What do their labs tell us? What are the deficiencies they have? What are the toxicities they have? What is their self-care like? What is their self-worth and self-perception like? Because all of these things are deterministic in the actions and the behaviors that somebody takes, and they’re going to be deterministic and how healthy this person’s going to get.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

The other big thing about functional medicine that makes it different is that it’s patient centered. And so the goal is to put the patient at the center of the protocol instead of a pill bottle at the center of a protocol. And we also have this deep understanding of the body’s innate wisdom, which comes from my chiropractic training and philosophy, but now we have modern day tools to address these things. Chiropractic was created literally thousands of years ago, but it was named just 125 years ago. It’s withstood the test of time, but times have changed. And so I view functional medicine as an evolution of chiropractic where we’re incorporating lab testing, we’re incorporating genetic testing where appropriate, we’re incorporating lifestyle assessment and evaluation.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

So the treatment doesn’t just start in our office, it actually carries on when the patient leaves the office because we’re helping them in so many different ways. And so functional medicine really, in my opinion, is the future of healthcare. And when we started our functional medicine clinic, about 10 years ago now, over the years, I started realizing how powerful this intervention was, and we had great success with it. And then a few years into that, many practitioners reached out to me, my chiropractic colleagues and said, “Hey, what is it that you’re doing here? You’re getting such great results.”

Dr. Sachin Patel:

And I started sharing that. And then they started hiring me to help them incorporate functional medicine into their practices. So now what I teach is how to apply marketing, how to apply sales, how to apply client’s education, how people can set up their businesses so that they have success and they can do it in a very, very efficient and affordable way. That’s the other thing that’s beautiful about functional medicine, is that it’s so much more affordable than traditional health care and so much more empowering than traditional health care. And that isn’t to put traditional health care down, there’s a time and place, but see, times have changed so the way we approach the problem also needs to change.

Jim Donovan:

That’s such a good explanation. Thank you for that. I’m wondering, you were talking about some of your earliest patients coming in with specific conditions. What do you find are some of the top things that you see in people that come to you for functional medicine?

Dr. Sachin Patel:

One of the biggest hidden mechanisms of chronic illness is inflammation, and that can be categorized as a form of stress. So the inflammation is a biological stressor on the body and then emotional stress is an emotional stressor on the body, and that changes our biology. So I would say that the most common cause of chronic illness that we find is stress and inflammation. And most people don’t realize this, but inflammation isn’t always painful. Your arteries can be inflamed and there may be no pain associated with that, there might be dysfunction. Your brain can be inflamed and there may be no pain with that. It’s more associated with dysfunction, maybe poor memory, maybe cognitive decline, not being able to connect the dots. These are types of things that can happen.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

So inflammation doesn’t always show up as pain and not all of our organs have pain receptors. So we don’t feel food going through our digestive system, that’d be annoying. We don’t feel our liver making bile and detoxing, that would be super annoying too. If we could feel everything, that would be super frustrating, we would just be lost. So just remember, we only feel and see and hear a narrow bandwidth of everything that’s happening. And about 90% of the pain signal from our body actually gets blocked in the brain, in the brainstem. So we don’t feel all the signals that are being sent to our brain.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

And so we’ve used medications. In some cases, some people use herbs or other interventions to dull that pain, and it actually can be a huge disservice because we need that pain signal to elicit behavior change in individuals. And so the physical inflammation or the biological inflammation is a big low grade chronic contributor. And then the stress can be a chronic contributor as well because stress throws everything off, and it’s a very intelligent response for a short duration, but when it’s a prolonged response, then that’s when things start falling apart. And we can never heal when our body’s in a stressful state, no matter what pills you take, no matter what supplements you take, your body only heals when you’re in a parasympathetic state.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

So a simple example, I’ll give you, Jim, is that we’re in a state of rest. So right now, or when we’re sleeping or relaxing, meditating perhaps, 50% of our blood flow goes to our liver and kidneys, 50%, half. When we’re in fight or flight, only 5% of our blood flow goes to our liver and kidneys. So if I give a super stressed out person herbs and nutrients and support for their liver and kidneys, but they stay stressed out all the time, I’m not even sending blood to those organs for a sufficient amount of time to create a physiological shift. Yeah, they’re going to feel better, but are they actually getting better?

Dr. Sachin Patel:

It’s almost like watering your front yard expecting the backyard lawn to grow. It’s well-intentioned, and it’s a great protocol, but it’s only going to work if we send blood to those organs and if we send function to those organs. I remind people of a really simple fact where you send flow is where you send function. So when we’re in fight or flight, we have to send blood flow to our arms and legs so we can run or fight. When we’re in a state of rest and digest or in a parasympathetic state, that’s when we’re sending blood to our trunk organs. So this makes sense why all disease basically starts in the trunk.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

So our kidneys don’t work as well, our liver doesn’t work as well, our digestive organs don’t work as well, our reproductive organs don’t work as well. All of these systems are the common issues that people come in with, and it can all be tied back to a chronic persistent stress response.

Jim Donovan:

So by not addressing stress, in other words, you’re not addressing the actual root problem. This is what you’re saying about some of the Western approaches, is that we tend to treat the symptom and not the root. It’s my big complaint about all the different things that I’ve had done with Western medicine, which by the way, have really helped me in many ways. But what you’re talking about is a little bit different.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

Yeah. So here’s the thing, like with stress, it usually is brought up in conversation, but here’s the thing, your doctor is stressed out. They’re stressed, so it’s hard for them to empathize with you because they’re like, “Oh, your life isn’t stressful, mine is way more stressful than yours.” So really it’s hard for them to even give that advice or to preach that advice or to give clients the tools and resources that they need to handle that stress better because they haven’t found those tools. It’s not something you learn in medical school. It’s not something you learn in chiropractic school, even.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

So I have to learn all this on my own time and my own dime, which I’m so grateful for because it opened up the new set of doors that I could walk through and really make a huge impact for people. And once I learned about getting people to shift into a parasympathetic state and how that turns on basically all the healing mechanisms in our body, then my single focus became, okay, how do I get people more parasympathetic? What are the things that people need to do to get more parasympathetic? That could include music, music helps us relax. It includes breath work. So we use something called a heart math device that allows us to track with your breath also something called HRV, which is your heart rate variability. We can dive deeper into that too.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

We also know that touch, human touch and affection also creates a parasympathetic tone in the body. So what are the things that we can do to get people more parasympathetic? So now we start sending blood to the organs that they’re complaining about having problems with. And not only do you heal one system when you do that, you heal them all. That’s the thing. When stress destroys every system in your body, rest, relaxation, being parasympathetic restores function in every single system in your body. And this is the cosmic joke when it comes to health and this is the jokes on the healthcare system, because we will never… You can’t create any disease in isolation.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

So you can’t have diabetes, or you can’t have kidney disease and expect everything else in your body to be perfect. You can’t have Alzheimer’s and assume that everything else is perfect. The same blood goes everywhere. It’s the same blood is destroying all the organs and all the tissues and all the cells or the same blood is healing and repairing and regenerating all the organs cells and tissues in your body. So that’s the beauty of it, it is black and white. And that switch, that master switch is getting people to activate their parasympathetic tone.

Jim Donovan:

So could you unpack the stress risk response for me? What exactly is happening in the body when I am in that sympathetic state, where I’m just constantly stressed out? Why does that hurt the body?

Dr. Sachin Patel:

Okay. Great question. I’m glad you asked. So here’s what happens. And I’m going to unpack this in a way that everyone can understand it, because then you’re going to get the most value out of this. So stress is actually first and foremost about our perception of situation. So all of our five senses, I would say six senses, come into the brain into the brainstem, and so we have nerves that tell us what is going on in our environment. So I have eyes to tell me visually, what’s going on in my environment. I have a nose and olfactory nerves that tell me from olfactory perspective, is there a fire? What’s that smell? I have ears that pick up sound. Obviously, I’ve skin and nociceptors of pickup touch and perception of my physical environment. And I have taste.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

All that information goes into a part of our brain called the amygdala. And the amygdala then has to decide based on my values, my past experiences and my beliefs what type of response I’m going to have. So before that information goes to the prefrontal cortex, it goes to our reptilian brain. And the reptilian brain is programmed for survival. So based on our past and our beliefs and our experiences, the midbrain or the brainstem makes a decision for us. Midbrain, I’m sorry. It makes a decision for us and decides, “Is this going to be a stress response or not?”

Dr. Sachin Patel:

So before we can decide consciously, our body is already being flooded with the chemicals to respond to the stressor. And that makes total sense because if a lion walked into my room or your room right now, the information that comes to the brain would say, “Okay, danger.” And immediately, my body would be primed to run away.

Jim Donovan:

This is fast. This happens-

Dr. Sachin Patel:

Instantly. Exactly. Instantaneously. And then it takes about a second or two for the conscious brain to realize what’s going on. So our body’s ready, the car is already on. We don’t want to wait to then process the situation, we’d be dead by then. So it’s a very quick, very intelligent response, but it’s subconscious to us. And this is why our subconscious beliefs are so valuable and so important, and this is where a lot of people need to do the work, the deep work is really doing this subconscious work, not getting good at yoga and meditation and breath work because that’s putting out the fire.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

So some people will not do the subconscious work with the hypnotherapy or the psyche or the plant medicines, whatever they need to do to delete that value system or upgrade the value system and process and cognize the past experiences that they’ve had. So if they use yoga and meditation, Tai Chi, Qigong as a way of dealing with stress, they’re actually lighting their house on fire every morning and then using these things as fire extinguishers, so they never see any progress. And the moment they stopped doing it, and the house is still on fire. So what we need to do is we need to reprogram the way people think, and that’s a whole different conversation. But that’s one thing that is very important and it’s often overlooked.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

So once that signal goes down what we call the sympathetic chain ganglia, every organ in our body gets that signal, every cell in our body gets that signal that we need to shut off all mechanisms of healing, repair, regeneration, and reproduction and we need to turn on all the mechanisms of survival. So what are the things that would be imperative for survival and what are the things that are non essential for survival? So something that’s relevant right now is our immune system. Your white blood cell is not going to save you from a lion, so your body shuts down what we call our cell-mediated immune system.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

This is why when people are stressed, they’re more likely to get an illness related to immune dysfunction because their immune system is being signaled by their own body to shut down because they’re undergoing a stress response. We can’t make more blood to send to our arms and legs, so we have to shunt it. We have to take the blood that normally would be going to our digestive organs, our liver, our kidneys, our reproductive organs, and now we take that blood and we shut off the blood supply about 80% to those organs and we send that same blood to our arms and legs. So now all the processes that are taking place here come to a screeching halt.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

So digestion isn’t as good, detox isn’t as good, reproduction isn’t as good, bladder health, all those things are not going to be that good. We also increase cortisol. So cortisol, we associate with the stress response. Cortisol’s main function in our body is to raise blood sugar. So blood sugar now goes up, cortisol also shuts off insulin receptor sensitivity, or decreases insulin receptors sensitivity. So our blood sugar stays higher longer. And that helps because we want to get the sugar into the cell, for example. And over time, those receptors become desensitized, so now our blood sugar stays high. So now we create the environment for diabetes and other metabolic issues.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

The other thing that happens is we shunt blood away from the parts that we want healing to occur and we send it everywhere else. So it can create fluid retention, it’s going to create disrupted sleep patterns, because sleeping is not important if you’re being chased by a lion. So we’re not even making the right hormones and melatonin and cortisol are antagonists to each other. So when cortisol is high, melatonin goes down. Melatonin is one of our most important immune-modulating hormones that our body makes. So again, further suppression of our immune system. So all of these things happen, but they should only be happening momentarily. So either I am killed by the lion, which hopefully is in the case, or I escape the lion.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

And now when I escape the lion, I climb up the tree, let’s say, I’m going to have profound gratitude. I’m going to be like, “Oh my God, I survived.” So that’s going to shift me back into a parasympathetic state because that’s what gratitude does. But if the lion just keeps chasing you, then you’re in trouble. And that’s where most people are stuck, is the lion’s chasing them, and so now they have this chronic stress response taking place from the moment they wake up to the moment they go to bed and crash at night. And of course, their body’s going to seem like it’s failing them.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

But when people come in to see me, or when they come into our practice and they say, “Listen, doc, my blood pressure is high, my digestion sucks,” they can’t sleep at night. “My detox markers are off. We’re trying to have kids, we can’t get pregnant.” First thing I ask them is, “How is your stress?” They’re like “Oh, it’s high.” Or it’s normal. Normal is high, just in case you’re wondering. Normal levels of stress these days are high. And so I congratulate them. I’m like, “Congratulations, your body’s doing exactly what you’re telling it to do. There’s nothing wrong with you. In fact, there would be something wrong with you if these things weren’t happening.”

Dr. Sachin Patel:

Because most people think their body’s broken. It’s like a car, I don’t blame the car when somebody gets into a car accident, I look at the driver and be like, “Dude, what happened here?” We don’t give the car the ticket, we give the ticket to the driver. So really there’s two components to our healing, one is our physical body, which is built in the image of perfection. And it’s the thing that’s working for you 24/7, you’re literally a hologram. So right now inside, both of our cells are dying and being silently replaced. So we’re dying and being reborn in every single moment. In fact, billions of cells will do that today.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

And so, we have this amazing vehicle and amazing tool, but nobody’s taught us how to drive it. And it’s not until somebody develops some chronic illness like cancer or heart disease or diabetes that now they’re given instructions on what they should have been eating the whole time, or how they should have been thinking the whole time, or how they should have been exercising the whole time. And so our mission is to be that leading example for people, and that’s why it’s called Living Proof because I want to be able to tell people, “Hey, you need to do these things because I did them.”

Dr. Sachin Patel:

I can firmly speak into the things I want them to do. And I have a very low stress lifestyle, and I’ve purposely created that so that I can tell people that it’s possible, and show people that it’s possible, but then I can also understand when somebody has a stressful lifestyle, what that actually looks like, and I can empathize for them and I can relate to them because I used to have a high stress lifestyle and I know what that does to the nervous system. So being in that sympathetic dominant state, that’s a downward spiral and people are stuck there, unfortunately.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

And with everything that’s going on right now, it’s been a chance for some of us to pause and reflect and ask ourselves, “Hey, is this the path that I want to continue down or do I want to do something different?” And one really simple example, Jim, I can give everyone who’s listening today, just to prove to them that it’s not their body that’s the problem is that when people go on vacation, they almost always feel better. So when I do a live workshop, I have people raise their hands and I say, “How many days does it take for you to feel better on vacation and who feels better on vacation?” Everyone raises their hands.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

I’m like, “Well, I didn’t change your genetics, you’re probably not eating any healthier. You’re probably not exercising any more or less than you used to, but I changed your function. I changed why you wake up that day, I changed why you’re eating what you’re eating that day. I changed who you’re hanging out with that day, and within two or three days, you start feeling amazing. And then you go back to the environment that you were in that got you into this mess, and guess what, you start feeling the way you used to feel.” And so that gives people the empowerment to know that they can feel better very, very quickly.

Jim Donovan:

It seems like it takes us back to what you talked about earlier which is that underlying unconscious belief system, is it almost like a hard drive and some of these beliefs are maybe a corruption in the hard drive that either need to be jettisoned or smoothed out somehow? Am I thinking about it right there or?

Dr. Sachin Patel:

Yeah. There’s two parts to us, there’s hardware and there’s software. And so, I love this topic. Our Western medical system is really focused on the hardware, so labs, scans, probes, we have to see it to be able to do something about it. And that’s true for computers. A computer has a keyboard and there’s actual hardware to it like a monitor and all that stuff to make it work, but what tells the hardware what to do is the software. And so if we get a corrupt file in our software or we get a corrupt file in our operating system, then no matter how good the hardware is, it stops working the way it was designed to. And the expectations that we have causes a frustration.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

So the software that we have that all of us have was initially programmed into our minds between the age of zero and eight. And so if you haven’t read the book for those listeners that are listening in, it’s called The Biology of Belief by Bruce Lipton, excellent book. And so when my son turned eight, I jokingly turned to my family and said, “Okay, my job here is done. I’ve raised him, and I’ve taught him all the values that he needs and now he’s on his own.” And so that age is very influential, our money mindset, how we show up when it comes to health, whether we exercise or not, our value system, how we talk about people when they’re not there.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

All of that stuff is being programmed into our children because their brain at that age is basically a sponge. And so many of us, as much as we try not to become our parents, it’s essentially who we become because they’re the ones that wrote that software code. A few years ago, I watched an interview with Steve Jobs and he’s being interviewed by this young lady. And he said, “I’ve had the fortune of working in the software industry. And in the software industry, I can actually create software that’s 30, 100, 1,000 times better than the next person. Whereas if I’m in the hardware industry, I can only create a computer that’s so much faster, but the operating system and the software is what determines how much I’m going to get out of that hardware and what I’m going to be able to do with that hardware.”

Dr. Sachin Patel:

And so, this is where the next renaissance in human evolution is going to take place is when we can start looking at the software. And just to be totally transparent, I don’t think we have even a clue, we have an understanding, but I don’t think we have a clue in our current medical model of what that’s going to look like. So it’s a new way of looking at the body, it’s a new understanding, and it drives the current establishment a little bit nuts because we can’t see it, we can’t scan it, I can’t touch it. So it doesn’t work well in this hardware era of medicine, but there’s this evolution or revolution and renaissance taking place and we’re starting to understand how powerful the human mind is.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

My suspicion is that we’ve known this for a few decades now and it’s one of the reasons that certain compounds like psilocybin and LSD have been suppressed because they’re mind expansive tools, and they can really help us get a much better understanding of actually what software we come with. We’re hardwired with some pretty cool software and when we can reprogram it and approach our childhood traumas from an adult’s cognitive capability, then amazing things start happening. So we do see some amazing transformations taking place for people who’ve had trauma and things like that with certain plant medicines, we’ve seen amazing transformations.

Jim Donovan:

That is so helpful, and something you said about these things being invisible yet powerful reminds me of the work that I do with sound, which is invisible to the naked eye. I can show you a graphic representation of it, and yet, it’s a building block of the universe. Powerful like the wind, we can’t see the wind, but we know what it does when it blows in the trees and we know how powerful that can get too. So I think it’s important for our listeners just to get that idea that though we can’t visibly see things, definitely it doesn’t mean that they’re not there doing important things. Thank you for that, I appreciate that.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

Yeah, absolutely. The most powerful forces are invisible.

Jim Donovan:

Yeah. Well put, well put. Something that isn’t invisible, something that we know from biology is this nerve, you and I were talking before we hit record today called the vagus nerve. And it’s one of the things I talk about quite a bit with how sound can help to stimulate it, and you were talking a little bit about some vagus therapies, and I’m just interested if you could connect some of the things we’ve talked about today to the vagus nerve?

Dr. Sachin Patel:

Yeah, absolutely. We talked about the stress response, we spent quite some time there and the question always is, “Okay, how do I undo that?” And DaVinci said this and Steve Jobs echo this, that the greatest sign of sophistication is actually simplicity. And so there’s nothing more sophisticated than our human body. We’ve spent trillions of dollars trying to figure it out and we still are almost completely clueless about it. And so, if it’s the most sophisticated instrument that we’re aware of, then it should also be pretty simple, just like a computer.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

What makes a computer sophisticated is that it’s easy to use, I don’t have to understand all of the nuances of how a car works or how a computer works in order to get it to do what I want it to do. So to get people to switch over from a stress-dominant response, to get them to switch over into a parasympathetic response, the bridge between the systems is actually the breath. So breathing is such an integral part of shifting people’s physiology into a parasympathetic state. And one of the things that breathing does is it stimulates, especially deep breathing our vagus nerve because our diaphragm has a lot of innovation from the vagus nerve.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

So we can literally use our breath consciously to control the stress response in our body. When we stimulate the vagus nerve, it’s going to shift us into that parasympathetic state. And there’s ways that you can activate the vagus nerve so that you’re actually working it out. So instead of just being passive about it, you can, and I don’t want to say aggressive, that’s not the right word, but you can be a little bit more determined in exercising it, so to speak.

Jim Donovan:

Deliberate.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

Yeah, deliberate, that’s the right word. A few exercises that we give our clients, one is chanting. So mechanical vibration of the vagus nerve helps, even talking helps. When you think about it, people don’t talk as much as they used to, they’re texting on their phones and they’re typing emails. It might be somebody right down the hall from them instead of talking to them and vibrating their vagus nerve and their vocal chords, they’re actually simply sending them an email. So the more we talk, the more we sing, the more we chant, the more we hum, we actually activate our vagus nerve mechanically.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

One of the things that also activates the vagus nerve is tongue scraping. So it’s an old Indian tradition, we’ve been doing this our entire lives, scraping our tongues with a copper or stainless steel tongue scraper. And I used to think that it was for cleaning my tongue, which it does quite well, but it’s actually to stimulate the vagus nerve.

Jim Donovan:

I never knew that.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

So when you gag yourself, you actually stimulate the vagus nerve. Another way to stimulate the vagus nerve is by gargling. There’s a simple exercise you could do, put safe amount of water in your mouth and you tilt your head back and you start gargling the alphabet. And you want to gargle the alphabet twice, that gives it enough stimulation. And the more water you add, it’s like adding more weight on your bench press. So the more water you add, the more stimulation you’re going to get. And the part of our brain, our brainstem where the vagus nerve attaches is right next to the part of our brain that produces tears.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

So you’ll know that you’re doing it effectively enough if you start tearing. So that’s totally normal. If you don’t start tearing up, then you’re probably not stimulating that nerve enough, just like when we gag, we start tearing. So the same thing will happen when we gargle, we’re going to start tearing up. Another thing that we recommend to people is essential oils can also detoxify the vagus nerve. So many people’s vagus nerves can be toxic, so there’s an oil that I use is called Parasympathetic made by a company called Vibrant Blue Oils. And I put a drop on the back of my mastoid process on either side and that’s going to help stimulate the vagus nerve.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

And then another thing that can stimulate the vagus nerve is lion’s mane mushroom. So lion’s mane mushroom heals the vagus nerve. And it’s quite the delicacy, but you can also buy it in a capsule form or a powder form added to your coffee or your favorite soup or beverage. So that’s another way to heal the vagus nerve. And interesting fun fact is that the vagus nerve has one of the highest receptor densities for CBD. So for some people, CBD can also be helpful in helping their vagus nerve work a little bit better.

Jim Donovan:

That’s super helpful. You said an essential oil that’s called Parasympathetic, and what was the company?

Dr. Sachin Patel:

It’s called Vibrant Blue Oils.

Jim Donovan:

What is it about the stimulating the vagus nerve? What actually happens in the body when we do that? I understand that it’s a good thing to do, but how does it work?

Dr. Sachin Patel:

Well, one of the things that it does is it basically shuts off the stress response. It’s like a gear in your car, you can’t be in drive and reverse at the same time. So it’s like taking us from drive and then neutral is probably a better example, it’s putting us into park, so to speak. And so what it does is it shifts blood flow, it shifts the chemicals that are being produced by our body. It starts sending blood back to the trunk organs so that we can restore vitality and nutrient exchange in those organ systems. It’s like literally a switch.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

And that’s the thing, like all ancient forms of intervention for this like Tai Chi, Chi Qigong, yoga, meditation, they’re all based on breath. Most people think the most important part of yoga is the movement, it’s actually the breathing. If you get the breathing wrong, then you don’t get the same effect as you would with inappropriate breathing. So breathing is so vital, it’s the first thing we look for when a child is born, and it’s the last thing we look for when somebody passes away, and it’s something that we do 23,000 times a day, whether we pay attention to it or not.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

And because of our anatomical setups with our desks, we’re sitting a lot more than we used to, many of us are taking short, shallow breaths instead of those deep breaths. And so just the way we breathe sitting at our desk also affects our sympathetic versus parasympathetic tone. And so in the body, we were sending our body this message that, “Hey, I want to shut off this response and activate this response.” And then the body without getting too complicated with all the physiology, it starts creating a corresponding response. And here’s the cool thing about it is that you don’t just heal one organ when you do that, you heal them all because you’re activating blood flow to those systems again.

Jim Donovan:

And they’re all connected, like a Daisy chain on a stage. If you have a lot of microphones plugged into different outlets to get to the board, and if one of the cables is bad, you get no sound out of a microphone because there’s a kink in the chain that makes. That makes sense to me that we heal one and then it affects the other, and that affects the other, and that affects the other.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

Yeah. What’s really interesting about the vagus nerve is that there’s two branches of it that come off the brainstem. So it comes off, the brainstem is cranial nerve number 10, and then that one nerve goes everywhere. So the word vagus means wanderer. So it finds its way and wraps itself and envelopes itself around our heart, around our lungs, around our digestive organs or liver, kidneys, reproductive organs. So it literally heals all of those organs, and it’s one nerve. The stress response on the other hand has different levels of innovation. You have a chain, it’s called the sympathetic chain ganglion.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

And then at every level of the spine, there is a little nerve that comes off to innovate the stress response, or basically tell those organs to shut off at each and every single level. So you have multiple… So the stress response is far more complicated, whereas the anti-stress response or the parasympathetic response is far more elegant in terms of how the solution is created by the body. Here’s a good takeaway for a lot of people, is that if your solution is complicated, you’re probably violating one of the laws of nature, some way shape or form.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

If your solution is simple, then you’re probably leaning into the sophistication of the body. And that’s the thing, medicine has really overcomplicated healing and health, and it’s conditioned people to think that, “Hey, if I want to feel better, it’s going to be complicated and expensive.” But it really doesn’t have to be. And that’s what we love about what we do is we keep it very affordable, very effective because we use this billion dollar body to create the results instead of a $5 pill that they have to take for the rest of their life.

Jim Donovan:

Right. And what I’m hearing you say to see if I’m getting this is that part of functional medicine is being deliberate about being active in your healing process, it’s not as much of a passive, “I’m going to wait for you doctor to fix me.” Is that accurate?

Dr. Sachin Patel:

Yeah. It’s the 80/20 predator principle. So in our traditional model of healthcare, people expect the doctor do 80% of the work, and they’re going to do 20% of it. In a functional medicine patient-centered model, it’s the opposite where the patient’s going to do 80% of the work, if not more than that, and the practitioner is going to provide guidance and coaching and education and give the practitioner or the patient an understanding. And this is why one of our mantras is that the doctor of the future is the patient. And that’s where we believe that health starts in your home, health starts in your own body. It’s not something that we can delegate.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

We’ve tried that approach for how many dozens of years now? How much money have we spent using this approach? And it’s not working, and it’s very reactive. How about we teach people from a very young age how their body works and how to make it work for them instead of waiting for it to fall apart and then blaming it and then trying to fix it. It’s such a PSYOP when you really think about it. It’s a huge psychological operation against the public because the best place to hide health is inside of you. And what I see happening more and more, even in the alternative world is people are convinced that their best health lies with them taking something outside of them instead of them owning what they already have.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

And so we want to use this billion dollar body to do its own… It’s already doing it, it’s been doing it your entire life, so why not lean into that and ask it what it needs and give it what it needs and see what it can do for you, because we know it’s capable.

Jim Donovan:

And I think about what you’re saying, and I think about what I know about music, like the history of music and indigenous cultures in the old, old cultures. And one of the things I see worldwide is some really specific commonalities in all of these cultures, we see dance, we see people gathering together to do things in community together. We see opportunities for people to be heard and also to be witnessed, stand to witness. We see drums, my big thing is drumming. So we see people gathering together doing some rhythmic music. And the healers of old and still today too, but really throughout history with the medicine, men and women, they use their voices, they used movement, they used ceremony.

Jim Donovan:

All of these things to help people stay in balance. And it’s interesting, even the word healing, it basically means to bring back to balance, maybe less of a cure than it is, let’s put the body back into its center point so it can do its job. So I’m just seeing the parallels here and I’m appreciating them.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

Yeah. Our body’s always fighting for homeostasis, that’s what it knows how to do best. There’s no programming for disease. This is something, if you study Bruce Lipton’s work, he was the first person to study stem cells. And what he realized is that he would basically replicate the same cells and put them in different petri dishes. And when he changed the conditions of the petri dishes, the cells behavior would change or their reproductive capacity would change. So the germ line was the same, the genetics was the same, but it’s the environment that was creating the problems.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

If we all lived in pristine conditions and pristine environments under the perfect conditions, none of us would have any health issues. So some of us may have certain predispositions and sometimes our predispositions are up here. And our mind is extremely powerful. When you study cymatics, you start realizing how powerful our mind is. Our mind is basically a frequency generator and it can literally bring into existence whatever you want it to bring into existence. And when people start tapping into this, they start realizing, “Wow, my thoughts are powerful. I better be sure I’m paying attention to what I’m thinking about.” They’ve always said, “Be careful what you wish for.”

Dr. Sachin Patel:

And so, there are certain frequencies, and now that we’re talking about frequencies, certain frequencies you can hear, and between 20 and 20,000 Hertz is the width, the spectrum that we can hear, but everything that’s vibrating above 20,000 Hertz, we can’t hear. And everything that has material form is usually vibrating at a much higher frequency, just because we can’t hear it, it doesn’t mean that it isn’t vibrating. And so when you study cymatics, cymatics, I’m sure you know what it is, Jim, but is basically the study of how sound effects shape and how it alters shape.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

And as we increase frequency, we increase complexity. So then you ask yourself, “Hey, if I vibrate a plate at a certain frequency and it’s predictable that 100 times out of 100, I’m going to create the same shape, as I increased frequency it increase complexity, so then it begs the question, what’s the most complicated structure that we’re aware of because it must be vibrating at the highest frequency, and that’s the human mind. And we know that the human mind is not just receiving information from its environment, but it’s also propagating information. And so we can measure that too.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

We could put electrodes on people’s heads and we can measure the vibrations or the frequencies that are being generated. And if we know that frequency organizes matter, then the frequencies that are coming out of our head can actually organize the world around us, and we can bring into existence, whatever it is that we want. And because we’re quantum really entangled with everything in this entire cosmos, because we all come from the same source, we can move molecules anywhere in the universe instantaneously.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

Now, the reason people might be wondering, “Okay, well, this guy’s full of it. How’s that possible?” Well, it is possible, and you’re already doing this. Think about the times where you’ve picked up your phone to call somebody and they’re calling you. You’re going to type somebody in email, and they’ve already emailed you. You think of your friend who you haven’t thought of in five years and the phone rings, or they show up at your door. This is happening to us all the time. And when it happens, most people will be like, “Oh, that’s crazy. I was just thinking about you.”

Dr. Sachin Patel:

When it happens to me, I realize it’s a capability that I have. Now, the reason most people don’t accomplish what they put their mind to is because their mind is constantly changing. It’s like watching a movie, but somebody else is controlling the remote and they keep changing the channel, it’s hard to make sense of what’s going on. And so one of the best ways for us to create our reality, whatever reality it is that we want, where we’re healthy, where we’re wealthy, where we’re vibrant, we’re contributing, is to stay on that channel.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

And as you’re staying on that channel, as you’re staying in that resonant frequency, everything around you will start organizing itself because it’s one of the key laws of the universe that everything has a resonant frequency. So my life right now has a resonant frequency to it that’s corresponding with the frequency that my mind is generating as well.

Jim Donovan:

Yeah. What I’m hearing you say is that there’s an alignment between your thoughts and your words and your actions. And I’m understanding that you are broadcasting that out into the world through those mechanisms, actions, words, and thoughts. And then also knowing that it’s even when we’re in that silent place and more thinking about those things in alignment, again, that we are bringing that experience to us over and over, and over again.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

Exactly. You got it.

Jim Donovan:

Yeah. I love that stuff. That’s good. I think at least I could talk with you for another three hours, I know you’ve got things that you got to do and so do I here, but I want to get people connected with you. So I know that you have this new book, it’s called Perfect Practice. Can you tell us a little bit about that?

Dr. Sachin Patel:

Sure. I’ll tell you about that, but then I’ll direct some people somewhere else. So as a practice success coach, the book that I wrote is called Perfect Practice. So if you are a practitioner, then by all means, go ahead and grab that book because it’s these principles through which I built my business. And I don’t necessarily say this in the book, but all of the principles through which we built our business are based on the Bhagavad Gita. So Bhagavad Gita is the Song of God, and it’s one of the ancient scriptures in the Hindu religion, and it’s very similar to the Dao De Jing.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

So we use ancient principles, timeless principles to build our business, and then that’s what we teach to our clients. So if you go to getperfectpractice.com, happy to send you a free copy of the book, you can take a look at that and build your perfect business that way, or specifically functional medicine clinic. But where I want to direct people is if those of you that are looking for health and optimization, if you like what you heard today, and I created a 30-day program called 30 Ways in 30 Days. And ultimately, Jim, we recognize how big the problem is, we’re not trying to get everyone to come and see us in our office because that’s not realistic.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

What we do want to do is teach people how to become their own best doctor. And so, I shared 30 of my best tips in this program, and it’s absolutely free. So if you go to 30in30.org, 3-0-I-N-3-0.org, then I’ll send you the 30 best tips that I would give you if you were coming into my office and paying me. If you paid me $100,000, this is the same advice that I would give you. So I’ve put that all into one neat little package for people, every day I’ll send you a short little video, simple things that you can do. And most of them are absolutely free. So you can incorporate them one by one or week by week, whatever you choose to do.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

And our goal with that program is to keep people out of our practice. Now, if somebody needs help and needs assistance, then let’s get you through that program first. And then you’re at least better qualified to work with us because if you’re not doing those things, the first thing that I’m going to tell you is to do those things, and it helps us get better results with our clients too.

Jim Donovan:

And that’s a beautiful service, what a generous thing to do.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

Thank you.

Jim Donovan:

Yeah. Could you tell me… So that is the website, one more time, what is the website again?

Dr. Sachin Patel:

Www.30in30.org, so 30in30.org.

Jim Donovan:

Got it. I’ll make sure that I put that in our show notes at donovanhealth.com/podcast. And when we put this out on our socials, we’ll make sure that we include it there too. We want to connect you with people. I think that the work that you folks do up there is phenomenal. I love getting to talk to you, maybe we can do this again sometime.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

Absolutely. Anytime, man.

Jim Donovan:

Yeah. I love it. Sachin, thank you for what you do in the world, thank you for bringing your whole self, to your family and to everybody that you’re working with, that is a beautiful model. And I’ve learned a lot today. So thank you very much.

Dr. Sachin Patel:

It’s my absolute pleasure, Jim. And thank you for all the work that you’re doing, getting this message out there and using music as a tool to heal. We need that now more than ever.

Jim Donovan:

Absolutely. Hang on the line here for a second, I’m just going to sign off. And all my listeners out there, thank you so much for checking in today. I hope you’ve enjoyed this and much love and I will see you soon.

Jim Donovan:

Well, that’s it for today. I appreciate you tuning in. Remember to come see us on our social media channels, on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube. Just search Jim Donovan Sound Health.

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