Osteopath and holistic therapist Vicky Vlachonis stays true to her roots, dynamically advocating holistic practices ancient and new.
“Everybody has pain. We’ve all felt pain in our heart, stomach, shoulder, head” says Vicky Vlachonis, author of the book ‘The Body Doesn’t Lie’ and osteopath to the sparkliest stars in the Hollywood sky. “Pain is the most powerful tool we have, if only we listen to the signals our body gives us. That’s why I wrote the book and have offered a three step, pain-free program based on Reflect, Release and Radiate.” When we meet, Vicky is tanned after her Greek island family holiday, and positively radiant – clearly she practices what she preaches. It’s been over 20 years since I last saw her at our school, where I remember her as a very sporty, vibrant and charming teenager. I am excited that she has forged such an energetic path in my favorite area of all – holistic wellness, helping thousands of people awaken to the true origin of their pain, and inciting them to recover and heal in natural ways rather than being part of the millions who pop handfuls of pills in order to get by.
Vlachonis was one of only two first Greeks to get a Masters Degree from the European School of Osteopathy in the ’90s and, working at London at the Hale clinic and the Integrated Medical Center, treating dancers from the Royal Ballet, Prince William and Prince Harry when they were grieving the loss of their mother, setting up her own practice in 2001 and later being flown to film sets, homes and music tours to treat some of the world’s biggest celebrities, such as Cameron Diaz, Sir Elton John, Katy Perry. Through her successful book, website and the motivational talks she gives for Young Living essential oils, for which she is a brand ambassador, she effectively raises awareness of holistic concepts such as, among other things, how emotional and physical pain are registered by the body in exactly the same way, and that one’s emotional / mental state should never be overlooked when facing physical pain, because feelings are stored in our cells as physical matter. Another major focus for her is to delineate how our diet plays a direct and commanding role on our physical, mental and emotional state. As an osteopath and muscoskleletal specialist who also uses complimentary therapies such as acupressure, acupuncture and cupping, she always questions her clients on their emotional balance, present and past traumas and daily habits that are so often overlooked as key factors for disequilibrium and disease.
Although living in Beverly Hills, Vlachonis says she dreams in Greek, eats Greek and speaks Greek every day, even going as far as always proudly carrying 100% barley paximadia rusks and extra virgin olive oil from Greece in her bag wherever she goes. Described as “a blonde, modern-day version of Hera” by her most beloved and loyal client, Gwyneth Paltrow (who wrote the foreword to her book, and also calls her “the pain gangster” and “clicky Vicky”), Vlachonis has made it her mission to introduce Greek holistic concepts combined with up to date medical facts and scientific research related to the importance of diet, body care and mindfulness. She also works closely with the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA).
Vlachonis credits Campion, the international school she attended in Athens, where she says “I was encouraged to see myself as a leader in sports and other activities, as well as to seek out my hidden talent of caring for others”, for her current success.
In ‘The Body Doesn’t Lie’ she describes at length the positive and powerful influence that her family had on who she is today, saying that they offered her all the inspiration, drive and focus she needed – her tennis coach father, and a mother who was among the very few yoga teachers and Reiki therapists in Athens at the time, taught her sports discipline and mindfulness / holistic wellness techniques respectively throughout her childhood, while every summer she travelled to her grandmother’s home in Pelion, which only served to deepen her love for Greece. “When we spent our summer holidays with my grandma in Pelion it was like being at a spa!” she gushes. “There my mum and I practiced mindfulness, meditation, learning to respect and care for my body, while my grandmother who was a cook, had her own vegetable and fruit garden, and through her I learned about the importance of fresh, seasonal, organic food. Then there was the sea and enjoying the therapeutic effects of the water, long walks in beautiful nature, fresh air.”
“My clients love that I come from Greece,” says Vlachonis. “They see it as a magical place, where everything started. What I love about my American clients is that they honor their bodies, are disciplined, they eat healthy, they meditate, they exercise, yet we Greeks have it in our DNA to wake up near the sea, to have lemon and olive trees and medicinal, fragrant herbs right outside our doorstep. Meanwhile more and more scientific research globally is focusing on the powerful medicinal properties of things traditionally used in Greece, like antibacterial and antibiotic oregano and lemon, or of course olive oil – for example recent research has proven the latter is a natural painkiller. And that’s only the beginning.”
VICKY VLACHONIS’ TOP TIPS FROM ‘YOUR BODY DOESN’T LIE’
• Start your day drinking warm water with fresh lemon juice to flushes out the liver.
• Use a natural bristle brush to dry-brush your skin, starting from the soles of your feet and brushing upwards towards your heart, for lymphatic drainage and skin detoxification.
• Do the Tibetan Rites – a series of five yoga exercises that offer inner and outer strength and longevity.
• Remember that physical and emotional pain is registered by your body in exactly the same way – thus, when experiencing pain, ask yourself where it’s really coming from.
• Dietary non-negotiables – sugar, wheat, cow’s milk.
LIVER FLUSH SMOOTHIE
Mix in a blender:
• Juice of 1 grapefruit
• Juice of 1 lemon
• ½ cup olive oil
• 1-2 cloves garlic
• 2-3 slices ginger.
Every ingredient of this smoothie has its own anti-inflammatory power. Drink this first thing in the morning, ideally after a cup of warm water with lemon, and follow with a glass of water.
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