Healer-to-the-Stars Dr. Habib Sadeghi on How to Mentally Detox
Penelope Cruz, Gwyneth Paltrow and Jessica Chastain swear by this East-meets-West doc and his new book, 'The Clarity Cleanse,' which can be used, for one, to really enjoy the holiday season.
When Gwyneth Paltrow writes the foreword to your new book and Anne Hathaway, Demi Moore, Jessica Chastain, Tobey Maguire, Penelope Cruz, Jenni Konner and Javier Bardem all share personal testimonials, it's clear you've made some kind of impact on people's wellbeing. In fact, Hathaway says it's just two words, "trust deeper," and the man who taught them to her that changed her life. That man is Dr. Habib Sadeghi (his Be Hive of Healing center is in Agoura Hills).
A doctor who blends Eastern philosophy and Western medicine, he has a new book out Dec. 26 (on the new imprint Goop Press), called The Clarity Cleanse: 12 Steps to Finding Renewed Energy, Spiritual Fulfillment, and Emotional Healing. In her foreword, Paltrow talks about how Dr. Sadeghi became a mentor and taught her how to live in an honest way, which would ultimately make her body healthier, too.
Sadeghi is often sought out by people with chronic disease, and is himself a cancer survivor who more than 20 years ago shunned radiation and chemotherapy in favor of holistic interventions. "[I] apply various interventions for their physical condition while simultaneously guiding patients through a psycho-spiritual exploration of unresolved emotional issues from their past connected to things like trauma, fear, anger, resentment, shame or guilt." These issues, when held for years, he says, "act as strong co-factors in making the body more vulnerable to disease and hamper our ability to heal."
To Dr. Sadeghi, clarity is key to living a life of wellbeing. "The empty cup on the cover of The Clarity Cleanse is symbolic of the need to clear away the mental clutter to create a holding space where this kind of work can be done," he says. After his brother passed away unexpectedly, he decided to write the book and share the exercises he'd developed with his patients. "The great thing is this program can be added as an adjunct to any type of physical treatment one might be receiving."
His "cleanse" is about ridding toxic, accumulated negative emotions, which he likens to any chemical or poison. There are emotional exploration exercises, as well as a short-term diet that includes fish, apples, brown rice and other high-nutrient cleansing foods. "Opening up the body's detoxification pathways while simultaneously performing an emotional cleanse has shown to provide the best results in both mind, body and quality of life for my patients," suggests Dr. Sadeghi, who also runs the organization Love Button Global Movement.
During the holiday season in particular, he hopes to instill in people mindfulness about what they do and consume. "Are you having a drink because you're celebrating a wonderful year with friends and family, or because you're attempting to self-medicate? With clarity comes a more authentic sense of self and honesty with regard to the decisions you choose to make."
Still, he says, while people always want to change their diet first, it's only about 30 percent of the total healing equation. "Healing is a top-down strategy that begins in the mind." So, he prescribes an exercise called Purge Emotional Writing, "to detoxify our emotional body of negative energy." It means taking 12 minutes writing, with a pen and paper, about whatever is disturbing a person's peace, and then immediately setting the pages on fire, which is cleansing, transformative and subconsciously powerful. "The stresses of the holidays have an undeniable effect on our mental and physical wellbeing," he says. "On a day-to-day basis, I've seen that everything in our world is connected. Fear, anger and unhappiness in an individual can spread to a family, which can spread to a community, which can spread to a city, and so on," says Dr. Sadeghi. "Our goal is to cure this ill one person at a time. The seeds of clarity, like a tree, blossom and fertilize the surrounding area."