Barefoot Doctor's Journal

Take control of your health with this guide to natural health and healing. Get expert advice to help you alleviate pain and live healthy naturally. Access to tools, information and opportunities.

Take control of your health

For 5000 years Traditional Chinese Medicine has help people to relieve pain and achieve a healthy longevity naturally.

A comprehensive guide to natural health and healing, the Barefoot Doctor’s Journal seeks to empower it's readers to take control of their own health, find their own inspiration, help create healthier communities and share the adventure with whoever is interested. Internationally recognized experts in the fields of healthy aging and Traditional Chinese Medicine, the Living Younger Longer Institute has helped hundreds of people each year to live healthy naturally.

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Providing members with the latest scientific research on the ancient healing secrets of Traditional Chinese Medicine. Get information, access to tools, and enjoyable opportunities for a lifetime of active adventure!

January 17, 2022
Joe Brady

Help us understand how to keep the mind and body healthy

The World Health Organization defines health as “Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.”

With all the advances in modern medical science, we still struggle to understand how to keep the mind and body healthy. Life expectancy is going down not increasing. The individual’s responsibility for their own health and social well-being is still not well understood. Over the past two years, we have been conducting just such complex research at the University of Denver. With advances in information science, Artificial Intelligence, and Machine learning, the scientific study of complex “healthy lifestyle factors” are able to be studied in a rigorous way. The need for individuals and communities to participate in public health efforts has never been more obvious than since the COVID pandemic.

If you have filled out previous surveys, thank you and we need your help once more!

It is important to our research to get multiple measures over a period of time. Please help us out and once more fill out another survey. You will be getting a new email link from the University of Denver in the next week.

If you have not yet participated we are hoping that you will help us out. if you are 30 or older and participate in lifelong learning and/or integrative medicine, you may be eligible to participate in a research study.

For more information about the study or if you have any questions read on

January 4, 2022
Joe Brady

Staying Healthy this Winter Is It Flu, COVID-19, Allergies, or a Cold?

Feeling sick can be especially concerning these days. Could your sniffles be caused by COVID-19? Or the flu? A cold? Or maybe allergies? Determining the cause of an illness can be tricky because many share some symptoms. They can leave you sniffling, coughing, and feeling tired. But there are important differences. Figuring out what’s making you sick can help you recover and prevent spreading sickness to others.

Flu vs COVID-19

“Distinguishing COVID from flu can be difficult because the symptoms overlap so much,” explains Dr. Brooke Bozick, an NIH expert on respiratory diseases that affect the lungs. Flu and COVID-19 are caused by different viruses that can be spread among people. Flu is caused by the influenza virus. COVID-19 is caused by SARS-CoV-2. Both can give you a fever, cough, headaches, and body aches. Flu and COVID-19 also spread similarly. They’re transmitted by small particles that come from your nose and mouth when you sneeze, cough, sing, or talk, raising the possibility of infecting people who are nearby. Infected people may not have symptoms, but can still pass along either virus.

“Both influenza and COVID can be spread to other people before individuals develop symptoms,” notes Dr. Aubree Gordon, an infectious disease expert at the University of Michigan. COVID-19 symptoms can take longer than flu symptoms to develop, she explains. Someone with flu usually has symptoms 1 to 4 days after being infected. A person with COVID-19 typically shows symptoms about 5 days after infection, although this can range from 2 to 14 days. One telling sign of COVID-19 in some cases is loss of smell or taste. But because of other similar symptoms, there’s really only one way to be certain if you have COVID-19 or flu: Get tested. “You can go and get a COVID test at many pharmacies, and your doctor can administer tests for flu,” Bozick says. COVID-19 tests are also available at many health centers. And you can buy testing kits approved for use at home.

Could It Be a Cold? Or Allergies?

Like flu and COVID-19, colds are also caused by viruses and can be passed to others. Symptoms of a cold tend to be mild. You may have a runny nose, cough, congestion, and sore throat. But you won’t usually have the aches and fever that are common with COVID-19 and flu. Often, you’ll feel better in a couple of days. There’s no cure for the common cold. Typical treatments include rest, fluids, and over-the-counter medicines. Some complementary treatments may help with cold symptoms, too. Taking honey may help with nighttime cough for children over 1 year old. Rinsing your nose and sinuses can help with congestion. You can use a neti pot or other nasal rinsing device. Be sure to only use water that’s been properly processed, such as distilled or boiled water, not tap water. Nasal rinses can bring relief for both cold and allergies.

Allergies can cause a runny nose and sneezing. But they’re not contagious. If your eyes, nose, or ears itch, that also could be an allergy. Exposure to things like dust, pets, and tree or grass pollen can trigger allergies, which are caused by the immune system overreacting. Allergy symptoms tend to stop when you’re no longer exposed to the cause. Unless you have asthma, allergies typically do not cause breathing problems. Allergies can be treated with drugs like antihistamines, decongestants, and nasal steroids.

Wintery Mix of Viruses

Winter is the prime cold and flu season. You’re more likely to be indoors and closer to others when it’s colder outside. Weather also plays a role in the spread of viruses. “Cold and flu viruses survive better and are more transmissible if it’s cooler and if there’s lower humidity,” Gordon explains. Experts are concerned that flu and COVID-19 cases may increase and overlap in the winter. Flu cases usually start to increase around October and peak between December and February. Being infected with flu and SARS-CoV-2 at the same time is possible, as is showing symptoms of both.

If you’re sick with the flu, your doctor may prescribe antiviral drugs. Such drugs can make your flu milder and shorten the time you are sick. They work best if they’re used early in your illness. The FDA has also approved one antiviral drug, called remdesivir, to treat COVID-19. Other treatments are in development and under review. No complementary approaches have been shown to be helpful for fighting off flu or COVID-19. Fortunately, strategies to prevent the spread of COVID-19 also prevent the spread of flu and cold. “Measures like masking and social distancing work for other respiratory viruses, as well as COVID-19,” says Dr. Chip Walter, who studies vaccine development at Duke University.

Staying Well

There’s another really important way to fight viruses. “Get your flu shot and COVID-19 vaccine,” Walter advises. They are safe and effective ways to protect yourself and those around you. Don’t forget to vaccinate your children, too. That is the best way to protect their health. COVID-19 vaccines are now recommended for everyone age 5 years and older.

Flu vaccines are recommended for everyone 6 months and older. Flu vaccines are designed to protect against the four types of flu viruses that scientists expect to circulate that year. Researchers like Walter and others are working to develop flu vaccines that last longer and offer broader protection against many flu strains. Masks continue to be an important tool for stopping the spread of respiratory viruses, such as COVID-19. “With the pandemic still ongoing, it’s going to be really important that people wear masks,” Gordon says. Try to avoid crowded indoor situations when possible, too. For more tips on guarding against getting sick this winter, see

January 3, 2022
Joe Brady

Wellness and Well-Being in the New Year

After the last couple of years, we all need to recharge our batteries. Some people use complementary health approaches in an effort to recharge and promote general well-being or wellness, rather than to help manage symptoms of a health problem. Self-cultivation activities like yoga, tai chi, qigong, meditation, reading, exercise, and a host of other flow-inducing activities can be used to strengthen immune function, relieve stress, and create a sense of strength, wellness, and well-being. Wellness has several dimensions, including emotional well-being (coping effectively with life and creating satisfying relationships) and physical well-being (recognizing the need for physical activity, healthy foods, and sleep).

Self-cultivation works better to prevent health problems than to treat them after they have already occurred. Research sponsored by NCCIH suggests that people who use complementary approaches for wellness tend to have better overall health, higher rates of physical activity, and lower rates of obesity than those who use complementary approaches to help manage a health problem.

Read more and watch our Emotional Well-Being video series:

December 19, 2021
Joe Brady

International Taiji Science Online Forum

The videos in this Barefoot Doctor’s Journal post come from an online Taiji (Tai Chi) scientific and cultural conference of scientists and Tai Chi masters from around the world. This online forum was hosted by the Taiji Science Federation and the “University of Illinois-Champagne, Hangzhou Normal University, and the World Taijiquan Website. Distinguished guests such as members of the International Olympic Committee, scientists from the University of Illinois, Stanford University, and other renowned colleges and universities, five Chinese 9th Duan martial arts grandmasters, inheritors of Taiji from various genres, and Taiji world champions were presented together.

Lecturers and performance guests came from 32 well-known universities in 20 countries and regions that include China, the United States, Canada, Mexico, Brazil, Argentina, the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Belgium, Bulgaria, Japan, Australia, New Zealand, Chile, Singapore, Malaysia, Hong Kong, Macau, Taiwan, etc. With nearly a hundred experts, scholars, and Taiji intangible cultural heritage inheritors’ participation, it is a major event in the field of International Taiji science.

Watch the videos of lectures from scientists and Tai Chi Masters from around the world brought to you by

December 12, 2021
Joe Brady

Stress Hardiness for Stressful Times

Stress is change, whenever we experience a change in our lives whether good or bad change creates stress. These days it seems the world changes on a daily basis. Public health recommendations keep changing, every day brings changes in the economy, politics, climate, even family relationships keep changing. Like an episode of “Lost in Space,” it seems that it is just “one damn thing after another”. Stress is a normal feeling. However, unrelenting, long-term stress may contribute to, or worsen a range of health problems including digestive disorders, headaches, sleep disorders, and other symptoms. Stress may worsen asthma and has been linked to depression, anxiety, and other mental illnesses. Building stress hardiness and avoiding the long-term consequences of stress response means engaging in some form of relaxation, meditation, exercise, or any one of many methods for developing stress hardiness. Regular practice strengthens the mind to be prepared for and to reboot itself from the stresses of day-to-day life, especially during a pandemic. Meditation, relaxation techniques, tai chi, and yoga have been shown to be effective in reducing the effects of stress. Here is a list of some of the best evidence-based stress management techniques to help get you through the holiday season.