This uncovered Japanese secret battles stress & anxiety
One of our top editors was great. Until he wasn’t. Dennis, renamed here for privacy reasons, is a great colleague and friend of ours — good-looking, successful in his career, and is a great long-term relationship. Someone who you’d say has it all.
He graduated from Georgetown University with a Master’s in literature and was quick to advance the ranks from writer to editor. Dennis was an inspiration. Except for one terrible problem.
At one period, Dennis started distancing himself from the office and our team. He suffered from severe stress and anxiety, and the signs were showing — he started having grey hairs, developing acne breakouts, and experiencing back pain. He was successful, but the side effects of working long hours were catching up.
Now, Dennis is a close friend of mine, so we kept in touch. He knew the problem was in his lifestyle. He switched careers to a more relaxed position in a local publishing house, started doing yoga, eating healthy. But his problems didn’t stop.
Dennis spent two months trying to get back to his old self, but it was all the same — grey hairs, acne breakouts, and back pain.
But he always had an interest in traditional medicine. And he decided to give it a try by going to Japan and speaking to various doctors.
Some doctors tried doing tests, C-Scans, and biopsies, but no one could pinpoint why Dennis was experiencing his symptoms.
Nothing seemed to work. Until one morning, talking to a farmer in a local market, he expressed his health concerns.
“You must go to this hidden Ryokan (a spiritual retreat) where many famous Japanese go to find cures for their problems.” The farmer said.
And so Dennis did — he went to this hidden spiritual retreat for a week.
For a week, Dennis learned from the local monks — he cleaned the common spaces with the monks, picked natural food, did yoga, and he started feeling a bit better.
Around the 5th day in this retreat, a practitioner noticed Dennis experiencing severe back pain while he was trying to get up from his bed. He looked at Dennis being in pain, observed his body's movements, the graying of his hair, and the acne breakouts on his face.
The practitioner told Dennis that his body looks like it had a toxin overload. It seemed, he said, like Dennis had lived a very stressful lifestyle and had forgotten to take care of his body for too long. There was a natural ailment, he said, that Dennis should try.
“The feet are full of the most sensitive nerve endings and body energy centers. All body systems flow through the feet. But when was the last time you took proper care of your feet?”
The question dazzled Dennis. He knew the practitioner had a point — even if Dennis tried eating right, going to yoga class, or jogging — he never quite thought about taking care of the part of his body that’s amongst the most essential in maintaining a healthy blood flow throughout the body.
The practitioner handed Dennis special feet patches that he said were made from various herbs — a century-old ailment the Japanese had been using to stabilize blood flow in the feet and help reduce the number of toxins accumulated there. After all, he said, the feet are where the first chakra is — it’s your connection with the Earth, and if you do not take good care of it, you’re going to lose this connection.
The patches had a nice, lavender smell and were supposed to be worn at night. The following night, Dennis put the patches on his feet, as instructed by the practitioner. He felt nice warmth and comfort, which helped him fall asleep faster.
The following morning, as Dennis woke and took the patches off, they were dyed in black. Rich, full black. It seemed strange because Dennis had washed his feet the previous night so there was no way for them to be dirty. Dennis went back to the practitioner and asked what the reason may be.
“According to ancient Japanese medical knowledge, our human body has over 360 acupuncture points. More than 60 of the acupuncture points are found on the soles of the foot. Our feet are the reflective zones of our internal organs.” the practitioner began to explain.
He continued, “these patches stimulate the 60 acupuncture points on your feet and help detoxify your body. The herb mix draws out toxins from the feet in a safe and non-invasive way. The toxins leaving your body are what dye the patches to black”
Dennis couldn’t believe it — and he was right in his disbelief. Never in his life had he heard of anything similar. But he decided to give the patches a try and continued using them for another week. Each night he would put clean white patches on his feet, and in the morning, he would wake up to the patches being richly black.
However, with each night, the patches seemed to be less and less black. By day 6, he noticed that his face was turning brighter and regaining a healthy texture. The graying of his hair seemed to have stopped. Further, even getting out of bed was easier — the pains in his back were lessened.
Dennis found a century-old solution that finally solved his problems.
After a week of use, Dennis almost cried. His back pain and acne breakouts had subsided so much that he almost forgot there had been anything wrong. He wanted to purchase more patches to bring back home, but he was told that they were a local ailment that would not be given up to the wider world. But Dennis now knew how to fix his problems, and he vowed to recreate the patches, and even improve on them!
Dennis was introduced to a Japanese farmer that comes from a family of generations of doctors.
Once he left the retreat, Dennis came back to the same town where he had met the farmer in a local market and told him the patches' story and how they helped solve Dennis’s problems. The farmer nodded his head and said that a friend of his had made something similar to what Dennis had described.
He then went on to introduce Dennis to Kai Akira, a childhood friend of his.
Kai Akira was an aging Japanese doctor. He possessed wisdom passed through generations, care, patience and love. He knew that for the body to be healed the mind and soul should be taken care of as well.
Kai spent his time carefully picking herbs in the forest and later mixing them like his grandfather and father did before. As Dennis and the local farmer came to visit Kai Akira, there was a peaceful rustling of the leaves in the forest close to his home, a pond with koi fish near his little house, surrounded in serenity and silence. Here, the old man Kai Akira explained to Dennis the idea of a ‘healing’.
The “healing” is a process, a meditation. The herbs get mixed into a powder, powder is added into a bandage for the feet. That bandage is later perfected into a patch by his own children - the patch he calls Nuubu. A simple, natural solution to reduce the effects of stress and toxicity that are associated with fast-paced modern life.
And so, Dennis tried the Nuubu patch, and he discovered that it worked even better than the one that he had tried at the retreat. Together with Kai’s children, Dennis made dozens of prototypes and tested every version. They gave samples to young and older adults who suffered stress and anxiety, and had visible symptoms of a stressful life on their bodies.