In 1970, I was serving as Bishop of the Boulder II Ward in the Denver West Stake in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The Elder’s President, Bud Harrison, and I (just the two of us) were moving a piano for a member of our ward, and I crunched my back. I chose not to go to the doctor and lived with it even though it got worse over time.
By 1999, I could lift almost nothing, and at times my back would go into spasms so bad that sometimes I had to crawl to the bathroom. Some dear friends had recommended a book, “Your Body’s Many Cries for Water,” authored by Dr. Fereydoon Batemanghelidj. While reading the book, Dr. B mentioned another book he had written on how to deal with back pain. “How to Deal With Back Pain and Rheumatoid Joint Pain.“
Natural Solutions for Back Pain
After purchasing the book, I followed Dr. Batemanghelidj’s suggestions relevant to exercises, diet, and drinking the suggested amount of water. It not only brought relief from the pain, but allowed me to rebuild and strengthen my back. When you live on a farm, lifting is a part of life; now, in my 81st year, I can lift 90 pound bales of hay.
At the time I read his first book, I was so impressed that I wrote a book report. Somehow, Dr. B. found it, liked it, and called me. We became friends, and I told him about my success with healing my back. He asked me to write a letter, and he would publish it in his next book. The following is an extract from a letter to Dr. B with some editorial variations.
“Dear Dr. Batmanghelidj, 26 February 2003
Your book, How to Deal With Back Pain and Rheumatoid Joint Pain, is the only book I know of that teaches how to heal the back naturally, and I know it works for it worked for me. Lower back pain and injuries are so common, yet few know of your great pioneering work: “
David W. Allan
Even though he passed away over a decade ago, I still hold him as the world’s expert on the importance of body hydration.
My Added Insight
I would like to share some information from his book as well as add my own insights. His diet lines up perfectly with a health-code revelation given the Prophet Joseph Smith in 1833. This revelation also validates Joseph as a prophet, because at that time alcohol, tobacco, and caffeinated beverages were thought to be medicinal or healthful, which Joseph and his prophet brother, Hyrum, said should not be ingested. The plant based diet in proper balance with meat, given in that revelation, have been validated by science since and line up with Dr. B’s diet recommendations.
In that revelation, the Lord promised both physical and spiritual blessings to those who would follow it. A UCLA study of 10,000 Mormon High Priests and their spouses showed them to be the healthiest sub-group they had ever studied.
As Dr. B explains the physiology of the spine, which has no blood circulation and is nurtured by osmotic pumping, he shows that if we have proper body hydration, proper diet, and do his recommended exercises for the back then comes natural repairing and rebuilding through this amazing osmotic-pumping, nurturing system. He points out that caffeine, tobacco, and alcohol are also counterproductive to back healing – further validating the above revelation.
Since soft drinks are diuretic, they work in the opposite way and deplete the body of the needed water. Many soft drinks are caffeinated. The ingesting of caffeine is not only counterproductive to healing, but inhibits neuron growth, and adversely affects the adrenal gland. Interestingly, Dr. B’s diet and the above referenced revelation line up with Dr. Brant Cortright’s book, The Neurogenesis Diet, and lead to building the brain.
It Feels So Good to Feel Good
The Lord has been so good to me, and good health allows me to better serve and do those things that I feel are most important for Him and for Heavenly Father’s children. I love to express my gratitude by serving, and you can’t do that very well laying on your back in pain.
It is 47 years since I had my back accident, and I am still doing Dr. B’s exercises with triple benefit, as I nurture body, mind, and spirit by listening to the Book of Mormon in French while I do them. It is a great way to start the day.
Doctors can do a lot, but God is the perfect doctor and designed our bodies to heal if we do the right things. I believe He guided me to Dr. B’s work so that the natural way of healing back pain could work in my body and I could share it with others. Drinking enough good water is very important, and is also essential for a healthy immunity system.
David W. Allan