Dr. Reich created several terms to help clarify his understanding of ionic calcium deficiency and the complex role it plays in attaining and maintaining one’s health. Two of them in particular are “adaptive functions” and “mal-adaptive” diseases. As the body becomes increasingly more ionic calcium deficient, as indicated by pH levels, in an effort to protect it from self-destruction, it may modify or adapt the functions of certain tissues and organs.

In other words, if insufficient ionic calcium is available to produce symptom-free or pain-free operation of all tissues and organs, in its wisdom the body rations the available supply on a priority basis. When ionic calcium deficiencies are detected by their destructive impact upon the body, certain tissues – nerve, secretory, skeletal and smooth muscle tissues – may cause several symptoms and/or physical changes – to occur, which should be recognized and serve as red flags. Dr. Reich labeled these adaptive functions.

  • poor fingernails
  • coated tongue
  • tenderness of trapezius (shoulder) muscles under moderate pressure
  • increased tendon (patella) reflexes
  • acid saliva, and or other physical changes
  • chronic headache
  • biochemical anxiety-tension
  • dizziness
  • muscle aches and pains
  • abdominal pains and constipation
  • enuresis (nocturnal bed-wetting)
  • lowered resistance to infection
  • tendency toward obesity

According to Dr. Reich the above named physical changes and symptoms describe the ionic calcium deficiency syndrome. A syndrome is a symptom complex arising from a common cause; in this case, a lack of ionized calcium.

Adaptive functions, which are excited by autonomic or automatic nerve stimulation and by adrenal adaptive hormone secretion, may be gradually broken down through exhaustion created by persisting deficiency and direct effect of the same, will give rise to mal-adaptive disease.

Dr Bob Owen