The Life Guiding Principle Of Above-Down, Inside-Out
Living by a set of principles, builds one’s philosophy. Now why is philosophy important? It is the foundation from which your actions come, or the “Why” behind what we do. So in these terms, discussing philosophy is a very valuable and practical endeavor.
Many chiropractors hold dear the principle of Above-Down, Inside-Out (or ADIO). What is it? Simply put, it is how the body functions. We have an Innate (inborn) Intelligence that controls all our body functions without having to consciously think about it. This control starts in the brain (Above) and sends energy and information down the spinal cord (Down). From the spinal cord and its nerve roots (Inside), this energy flows out to all parts of the body and expresses itself to the outside world (Out). ADIO refers to the functioning of the nervous system and all its manifestations. ADIO reminds us that the human body is an infinitely complex entity that self-adjusts, self-manages and ultimately heals self. It is a principle of life itself.
One way to demonstrate how closely one adheres to the ADIO principle is by using the example of the common cold. When someone has a cold, what symptoms are being expressed? Runny nose, cough, sneezing, sore throat, tired, decreased appetite, etc.. Now what many people do is to take medications to suppress these symptoms, so they can continue their day, business as usual. We’ve seen the commercials that show as long as mom takes this medication, she can continue to be the “supermom” that she’s accustomed to being. Sounds great right?!
It has been my experience, through observing thousands of patients, that when people approach a cold this way either they complain that this bad cold is hanging on forever or they get colds multiple times throughout the year. Why? Because they are not adhering to ADIO. Cold symptoms are one way the body heals itself from the Inside-Out. Your runny nose, coughing and sneezing remove unwanted pathogens from the body. Being tired means your body wants to recharge with sleep. 40% of daily energy expenditure is digesting food, so lack of appetite means your body wants to spend its energy getting rid of stuff and fighting this cold. You only have to look at your pet “Spot.” When he is not feeling well, he lies around like he is dead and doesn’t want to eat anything. He instinctively knows how to heal. In ADIO philosophy, having a cold is simply bodily processes at work to heal yourself from the inside out. That is why when we take medications for symptom suppression and continue our normal eating, sleeping and daily habits, colds drag on or we get them multiple times. ADIO says, “The body knows best how to heal. Let the cold take it’s course, let the body express itself. Get plenty of rest. Eat minimally. Drink lots of water.” When people follow ADIO, I find their colds last perhaps 2-3 days and they get very few of them.
As a chiropractor, it is an honor to work with this ADIO process. We are often promoted as back and neck pain doctors. But, our primary and unique job is to improve spine and nerve function. Why? Achieving and maintaining a healthy spine and nervous system allows the principle of ADIO to work in our bodies, without interference. Live ADIO, it could improve your life.