It is good to remember that Reiki can help us before we get sick, as I have written about before. Reiki does reduce stress and pain, but it also enhances the immune system. This is a very useful thing to remember in the cold and flu season that stretches for most of the winter for the northern hemisphere.
We know that the immune system functions much more effectively when pain and stress are reduced. Many studies have shown that Reiki effectively reduces the body’s response to stress and pain. It is not clear if the stress reduction and pain control aspects of Reiki are what trigger the immune boost we get from a treatment.
When I had my first Reiki session, I was amazed by the immune kick my body got, even more than anything else—except perhaps for the feeling of bliss! On the day of my appointment I felt drained when I got up. As the day went on, I developed several cold symptoms. They were fairly mild, but I could tell I had a cold or virus starting.
My appointment was in the evening and when the Reiki practitioner asked me if I had any issues I was dealing with, I told her I felt like I was getting a cold and that my chest felt tight because of it. She did the treatment and I felt euphoric afterwards. By the time I went to bed, I felt much better. When I got up the next morning, I had no trace of a cold. Not one symptom.
My own experience and those of others has led me to believe that Reiki must stimulate the immune system to come into balance. Research seems to support this. The International Center for Reiki Training posts the results of many peer reviewed Reiki studies on their website (http://www.Reiki.org), where I discovered studies on the effectiveness of Reiki in supporting immune function.
In one study, blood samples were taken from three groups of volunteers. One group then received a Reiki treatment and relaxation; another group received a sham “Reiki” treatment from someone who was not a healer. The third group received nothing other than rest. Their blood was taken again immediately after their treatment or rest, and then again after 4 weeks. The blood tests showed an increase in the white blood cells among the participants who received Reiki and none in those who did not. The white blood cells are indicative of immune function response as these are sent out by our bodies to protect and defend us from invasion.
Another study involved taking blood samples from two groups prior to the study. One group received first degree Reiki training and the other received nothing. The blood was retested after the training and the hemoglobin and hematocrit levels were compared. Among those who took the Reiki training, 28 % experienced an increase in these blood values while the rest experienced a decrease. There was no change among those who did not receive the training.
These studies, combined with the known reduction of blood pressure and heart rate, would seem to indicate that Reiki has an effect on our immune system, balancing things out in whatever direction the individual needs at that time. Because of this, we may want to consider offering a Reiki treatment to help boost the immune system during times of increased stress, such as the Holidays, and to provide support during the flu season. A Reiki treatment during the Holidays sounds blissful—and it’s good for you, too!
Article by Angie Webster
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Angie Webster is a Reiki Master, Teacher, and Author. Angie’s primary focus is animal Reiki, which she adores. She teaches online classes on energy healing, flower essences, herbalism, and personal growth. Angie often works with nature healing and Earth healing, hoping to better understand our connection with Mother Earth. Angie is the author of Animal Reiki: How it Heals, Teaches & Reconnects Us with Nature and Reiki from A to Z. You can follow her at: angie-webster-healing.teachable.com and on Facebook (facebook.com/angiewebsterhealing).