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.

News You Can Use!

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!

November 7, 2022
Joe Brady

How To Make Sense of a Scientific Journal Article

When you want to find out about new findings from medical research, it may help to go to the source—the scientific journal article in which the new research was published. As part of Health Literacy Month, we have launched a new tool to help you navigate and understand scientific journal articles.

The “How To Make Sense of a Scientific Journal Article” tool will help you learn about the information you can find in each section of the article, questions you can ask to help you better understand a study’s results, and more!


Almost every day, new findings from medical research and studies about possible treatments and practices are published in scientific journals. Some may include complementary health approaches.

These articles often become sources for news stories, and they can be important tools in helping you manage your health. To find reliable information, it’s important to go to the source, such as a research study in a scientific journal. But sometimes finding scientific journal articles, understanding the studies, and interpreting the results can be challenging.

Read more for guidelines to consider that can help you make sense of a health research study.

October 23, 2022
Joe Brady

Complementary Health Approaches for Chronic Pain

This article summarizes current scientific evidence about the complementary health approaches most often used by people for chronic pain, including fibromyalgia, headache, irritable bowel syndrome, low-back pain, neck pain, osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, and cancer pain.

The scientific evidence to date suggests that some complementary health approaches may provide modest effects that may help individuals manage the day-to-day variations in their chronic pain symptoms. While some complementary approaches do show modest benefit, the amount and quality of evidence varies depending on the approach and pain condition.

What the Science Says: 

A 2018 review by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) found that acupuncture was associated with slightly greater effects on chronic low-back pain and function at 1 to 6 months when compared with controls (i.e., simulated acupuncture or usual care).
Complementary Health Approaches for Chronic Pain

Pain Conditions and Summary of Current Research

Low-Back Pain

There’s low- or moderate-quality evidence that a variety of mind and body practices, including acupuncture, electromyography biofeedback, low-level laser therapy, mindfulness-based stress reduction, progressive muscle relaxation, spinal manipulation, tai chi, and yoga, may be helpful for chronic low-back pain. There’s low-quality evidence that acupuncture, massage therapy, and spinal manipulation may be helpful for acute low-back pain. Preparations of the herb cayenne, used topically, may help to relieve low-back pain.

Read more about the research on low-back pain

For More Information on research for relief of pain for

  • Fibromyalgia
  • Irritable bowl syndrome
  • Neck Pain
  • Osteoporosis Arthritis
  • Rheumatoid Arthritis
  • Cancer Pain
October 17, 2022
Joe Brady

Music and Health: What You Need To Know

Can music be good for you? Yes, according to a growing body of research. Listening to or making music affects the brain in ways that may help promote health and manage disease symptoms.

Performing or listening to music activates a variety of structures in the brain that are involved in thinking, sensation, movement, and emotion. These brain effects may have physical and psychological benefits. For example, music causes the release of brain chemicals (neurotransmitters and hormones) that can evoke emotional reactions, memories, and feelings and promote social bonds. Music can even affect the structure of the brain. Certain structures in the brain have been found to be larger in musicians than nonmusicians, with particularly noticeable changes in people who started their musical training at an early age.

Increasing evidence suggests that music-based interventions may be helpful for health conditions that occur during childhood, adulthood, or aging. However, because much of the research on music-based interventions is preliminary, few definite conclusions about their effects have been reached. Many reports on the potential benefits of music-based interventions come from observations of individuals or small groups of people. Evidence of this type is valuable for suggesting new ideas, but carefully designed, scientifically rigorous studies of larger numbers of people are needed to provide stronger evidence on whether music-based interventions are effective for specific purposes.

What is music therapy?

Music therapy is a health profession in which music is used within a therapeutic relationship to address physical, emotional, cognitive, and social needs. The term “music therapy” is not a description of a specific type of intervention. Instead, it indicates the education, training, and credentials of the therapist who is delivering the intervention.

Music therapy may involve a variety of different activities, including music improvisation, music listening, song writing, music performance, and learning through music. Music therapists may work in many different settings, such as hospitals, outpatient clinics, nursing homes, senior centers, rehabilitation facilities, or schools.

Some of the music-based interventions described in this fact sheet fit the definition of music therapy, but others do not. For example, music-based interventions that involve listening to recorded music are often delivered by health professionals other than music therapists (such as nurses), and therefore do not fit the definition of music therapy.

You can learn more about music therapy on the website of the American Music Therapy Association.

To learn more about current research on how music-based interventions may help ease pain and anxiety; relieve distress in people with cancer; improve sleep quality in people with insomnia; and improve emotional well-being and quality of life in people with Alzheimer’s disease or other forms of dementia. Read more below.

September 30, 2022
Joe Brady

The Doctor Will Meditate with You Now


Osher Center for Integrative Medicine, Harvard Medical School, Brigham and Women’s Hospital

October 4th, 2022: “The Doctor Will Meditate with You Now – Implementing Mindful Medical Group Visits into Clinical Practice”

Dr. Paula Gardiner, Director of Primary Care Implementation Research at the Center for Mindfulness and Compassion at Cambridge Health Alliance

Description: We have Walk with a Doc, and now there is Meditate with a Doc, This online virtual Grand Rounds from the Osher Center at Harvard Medical School will be a discussion of the facilitators and barriers to implementing integrative medicine and mindfulness into the medical group visit model. We will discuss how group visits are being used as a model for increasing health equity.  

Date/Time: Tuesday, October 4 | 8:00am – 9:00am US EDT

For more upcoming lectures from Harvard Medical School Read More

September 25, 2022
Joe Brady

Biology of aging: why curbing calories counts

For decades, researchers have studied eating patterns—what, when, and how much we eat—to see how they might help us avoid age-related diseases like heart disease, diabetes, and dementia. They are also interested in learning more about how different eating patterns might affect the health of our musculoskeletal system, which comprises the body’s muscles, bones, and connective tissue.

Of particular interest to researchers is calorie restriction, or more properly termed a nutrient-dense diet which involves reducing average daily caloric intake below what is typical or habitual while increasing nutrition to avoid malnutrition or deprivation of essential nutrients. Calorie restriction can be also accomplished by not eating at all for a period of hours or days (known as “intermittent fasting”) or by eating less at some or all meals. Some studies in animals and humans have shown that calorie restriction can lead to improvements in a variety of health conditions. It also extends lifespan for many animal species, though there’s no evidence to confirm lifespan itself increases in people, eating a nutrient-dense diet has been shown to help us avoid many age-related diseases.

What’s the Evidence from Animal Studies?

More animal research has been done on calorie restriction than on fasting. In some experiments, calorie restriction is also a form of fasting because the lab animals consume all their daily allotted food within hours and go many more hours without any food.

In these studies, when rodents and other animals were given 10 percent to 40 percent fewer calories than usual but provided with all necessary nutrients, many showed extension of lifespan and reduced rates of several diseases, especially cancers. But, some studies did not show this benefit, and in some mouse strains, calorie restriction shortened lifespan rather than extending it.