If any South Waltoners tuned in to the Dr. Oz Show on July 17 they would have seen a familiar face.
South Walton's Laurie Beck was featured in an episode rerun about spontaneous healing.
On the show, which originally aired in February, Beck talked about her battle with the rare non-Hodgkin lymphoma/marginal leukemia.
When Beck was diagnosed in 2006 with the disease she was advised to take two weeks to get her affairs in order, then start chemotherapy treatments.
"The prognosis was not good," she says today.
Instead, she sought a second opinion and opted to return home do "watchful waiting," and started her own healing regimen.
"People thought I was crazy," Beck says now.
One date she will never forget, though, is May 18, 2006, when she walked into the Tortoise Clinic in Santa Rosa Beach.
On the advice of her mother, Beck had gone to the clinic to try acupuncture.
During the procedure, 50 needles were stuck in her body.
When she started to leave, she was given a bag of herbs to brew and told to drink 30 ounces a day for three months.
"I knew nothing about Chinese medicine, and the mixture was horrible, but I did it," she recalls.
When she returned to Boston three months later for a re-check of her blood, doctors were astonished to find her white blood count was down from 70,000 to 13,000.
"My doctor asked me what I was doing, and I told him I had removed all stressors from my life and had started the Chinese herbs," she said. "They sent me home and told me to come back in three more months."
Beck never took the chemotherapy treatments.
"I walked, did Pilates, Reiki; I removed all negatives, looked at the foods I was eating, I changed my way of thinking and shifted my whole life," she says of her method of healing.
"I did not know how stressed I was until I started paying attention. I have always had anxiety. I needed to learn when I felt myself getting into a bad place to examine what I would allow and not allow. I had to let everyone in my family know that for the first time I had to put me first," she said.
Her family, friends, and clients at her Pilates studio lent their support, and for that, she is grateful.
As for her diet, Beck said she always knew the value of eating fresh foods, but became more aware of what she was putting into her body. She eliminated dairy and processed foods completely, as well as any chicken that has been infused with hormones or chemicals.
"Nothing out of a box," she said.
These days she mostly eats fish, organic chicken, lots of vegetables, and red meat once a month.
And as for her health, Beck says "I am super clean. Doctors can't find a trace of cancer in her body. I am a one-percenter."
Her doctors have told her they have never seen her type of cancer (which is incurable) go into remission without chemotherapy.
Prior to doing the Dr. Oz show, Beck faxed all her medical records to the producers, who then flew her to New York. Three of the show's medical doctors came to her hotel suite and questioned her for four hours prior to Beck going on the show.
"Dr. Oz was lovely; very nice, caring and sweet. I think he was blown away by my story," said Beck.
She watched the original airing in February and was surprised to hear that it aired again last week.
On the show, Beck can be seen telling Dr. Oz of the tumors she had all over her body, and the life stressors she felt that were a contributing factor.
The point was made that people who get better end toxic relationships, change jobs, and change their lives to promote healing and keep the wound clean.
Beck talked of wanting to heal her life and began using anti-inflammatory garden herbs such as rosemary and basil, which she still uses.
Dr. Oz described Beck as having been to the other side and made it back, using what he calls spontaneous healing.
"Harness the power to heal your own life without medical treatment by getting in a healing mode, getting in sync, and all in alignment," he said.
"I liked most of it (the way her story was handled and edited)," said Beck. "I was taken aback watching what they put up on the big screen and to look down into the audience and see my son and brother crying ... I almost lost it."