A Eye wonder
You can see it in her eyes; Shanthini Naidoo is somewhat sceptical about iridology
HEAD of an iridologist appointment, you might wonder whether to spruce up your lashes with makeup, or if a rough night’s sleep would make for a bad diagnosis. After all, Monika Stransky is going to look into my eyes, deeeep into my eyes. Or my irises, to be exact.
Stransky is a homeopath who specialises in iridology, “the science of analysing the colour and fibre structure of the iris of the eye”. It is a diagnostic tool, she explains.
She does not examine the sclera, or white of the eye. “That is sclerology, which is a different science,” she says. So the rough night’s dark circles do not matter. She does point out that a hangover shows up as bloody veins emanating from the corner of the eye.
“Makeup is fine, even contact lenses, except coloured ones of course,” she says. Because colour is key in iridology.
Stransky starts the exam from afar. She explains that there are three (very) broad colour ranges — brown, blue and mixed.
“Each has its own set of genetically inherited traits. Your irises are brown, which immediately tells us a few areas where your body will have issues. Blood, the endocrine and hormonal systems, digestion. So illnesses such as diabetes, thyroid issues. You may have all of them in your family history, or some.”
She is on the mark, but you’d have to ask all the brown-eyed people in the world if the results correlate.
The blue-eyed or lymphatic group have glandular issues. Fevers will be worse in blue-eyed boys and girls and they usually have problems with the lymph glands, she says. Those with mixed eye colour or biliary types would be predisposed to liver and bile problems.
It all feels vague. Worse is the confusion when you get to the eye chart, which is so detailed it looks as though it was made to be read by ants.
“The irises are mirrored, so they share a common stomach area but the left eye matches the left part of the body, and vice versa,” she says.
Eye-reading gazes back to the 1600s, but it was the 19th-century Hungarian physician, Ignaz von Peczely, who pin-pointed the areas in the iris connected to the body. Apparently he noticed similarities between the streaks in the eyes of a man he was treating for a broken leg and those in the eyes of an owl that had a similar break. It is said he tracked illnesses and iris markings for years to create the maps.
German physician Pastor Emanuel Felke further developed the charts. Today, the Felke Institute in Germany is the leading centre of iridological research and training in the world, which explains Stransky’s large German client base.
Like many alternative medical treatments, iridology is regarded as pie in your eye by mainstream doctors.
Stransky, who spent two years studying at the SA Iridology Institute in Cape Town, explains about fibre structure.
“We look for a loose weave or a tight weave. People with tight weaves, like you, are neurogenic sensitive. A worry wort. You hold stresses in, and these will show in tight muscles, irritable bowel syndrome, tension. People with loose weave structures I call the Mediterranean types. They are loud, expressive. They let it all out, sharing their stress. They are less likely to have stress-related physical reactions.”
As on the skin, she says “life marks” show up in the eye, too. Leaf-shaped marks, sunflower-shaped marks, honeycombed dots, tulip-shaped marks and white sodium rings all mean something.
“You have a sodium ring, which shows toxicity and acidity. But your organs are all in good nick.” My eyes glisten.
But she also sees three “cramp rings”. “The most you should have of these, which look like crumpled fibres, is six. But more than two means it affects you physically. There is tension in neck and shoulders from where they appear.”
She suggests a diet for the toxicity and acidity, including a homeopathic remedy to help with detoxing. My allergies also show up, and low iron levels. Fairly typical, though, for a woman of my age and life stage.
Do her clients ever receive dramatic diagnoses? “Not usually. People usually come to see me as a last resort, or for preventative medicine. Iridology gives them an answer and explanation for those niggles. It is also about changing little things in their lifestyle which will be conducive to being a happy and healthy person.”
For those of us who put our faith in stethoscopes and doctors peering into our ears with little lights, it seems kooky.
“It is simple,” Stransky says. “Every nerve ending in the body sends messages into the spinal cord, and then to the brain. So if you consider the brain to be the harddrive of a computer, the eyes would be like a screen. They reflect whatever is happening in the body. The optic nerve is the only nerve to go straight out of the brain, into the eye.”
Perhaps the eyes are not only windows to the soul, but the body too? LS
DON’T BLINK: Iridologist Monika Stransky