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Journey Down the River…..cerebrospinal fluid, olfactory bulb and neural stem cells

I have always believed that the shape, design, and structures of the human ventricular system, and brain, are “so specific” for a reason.  Despite what we currently know about the brain, we still know so little.   And time and time again, I am drawn back to the CranioSacral System, the cerebrospinal fluid and the innate intelligence of our bodies to heal.

In Candace Pert’s book “Molecules of Emotion” she writes:

“Pain researchers all agree the area called the periaqueductal gray, located around the aqueduct between the third and fourth ventricles ( Aqueduct of Sylvius) of the midbrain, is filled with opiate receptors, making it a control area for pain.  ( It is also loaded with receptors for virtually all the neuropeptides that have been studied).”

It is proven that people who practice conscious breathing techniques aimed at altering rate and depth of breathing,…. like women in labor (think Lamaze) or Yogis,….. that they produce changes in the quantity and kind of peptides released from the brain stem, and vice versa. These peptides, through conscious breathing ( and for example things like holding your breath or breathing more quickly) are diffused rapidly throughout the cerebrospinal fluid, in a attempt to restore homeostasis. Many of these peptides are endorphins, the body’s natural opiates, as well as other kinds of pain relieving substances, and so the achievement of decreased  pain is arrived at.

Let us now also consider this study:  (http://www.nature.com/cr/journal/v21/n11/full/cr2011101a.html) which seems to lean strongly toward the acceptance of the idea that neurogenesis (the birth of new neurons) does indeed occur in two distinct areas in the brain: the subventricular zone – located adjacent to the lateral ventricles and the subgranular zone in the hippocampus. (My suggestion: scroll down the article and read the last two paragraphs especially and look at the diagrams).

In rodents and primates, these neuroblasts migrate in chains into the olfactory bulb, where they differentiate into interneurons. This migratory path is called the rostral migratory stream (RMS).

The existence of the RMS  in the adult human brain is still being debated, however think of its implications for human beings.  If the brain can create new neurons from the neural stem cells in the subventricular zone,  and these can then migrate, and potentially differentiate and integrate into a neuronal network; and if, these neural stem cells can then be accessed and manipulated via intracerebroventricular  delivery of growth factors, this opens up new ways to stimulate growth of new neural cells to replace and repair damaged ones.

Lastly, there is new research that is showing the existence of “olfactory bulb ventricles”…..meaning that cerebrospinal fluid is being found in the olfactory bulbs. This means there is a route of direct “communication” not only between how we breath BUT what we breath.

See article :   http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21044659

The “scientific” community is finally confirming what I as a  CranioSacral Therapist and Clinical Aromatherapist have always known to be true: there is a direct communication between cerebrospinal fluid, breath and the uptake/circulation of molecules (which can cross the blood brain barrier and circulate via CS fluid), including aromatic molecules.  To me, this is where we, as certified practitioners, can affect the most positive changes in health and wellness so our patients/clients can be more proactive in their own healing processes.  It is time for humans to embrace the paradigm of our innate intelligence and wisdom for healing,  that seems to be “designed” into our very structure and” being-ness”.

To paraphrase Candace Pert, we can enter the matrix of healing in the human body via any “nodal point”  because all the cells of the body communicate and healing is not in the business of being hierarchical.

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