Chromotherapy: Healing Hues

Colors corresponding with your chakras can help heal and balance your body and mind.



Florida Hospital patient room enhanced with the Philips Ambient Experience lighting system.

Courtesy of Florida Hospital

Color therapy, also known as chromotherapy, is an alternative remedy that uses color and light to treat physical or mental health by balancing the body’s energy centers, also known chakras. This concept dates back to ancient Egyptians who used sun-activated solarium rooms constructed with colored glass for therapeutic purposes. Today, both conventional and holistic practitioners acknowledge the healing potential of art therapy, and even though color therapy remains a gray area in Western medicine, enthusiasts are embracing its influence. 

“I have seen color therapy applied to the décor of Florida Hospital for Children,” says board-certified pediatrician Stacy McConkey. To help ease stress, the healthcare system installed a Philips Ambient Experience lighting system in both the emergency department and patient rooms to achieve customizable illumination and imaging. In her private practice, McConkey created a sense of tranquility using ocean, jungle and other nature paintings in calming blue and green hues. 

Freelance artists Chantel Rodriguez and Augusto Herrera took their vision of color therapy literally, creating a line of eyeglasses. “Our glasses are like portable solariums that allow you to choose how you want to feel, because colors influence us,” says Rodriguez, who co-founded ZEN30, an eyewear line of seven UV lenses that correspond to the body’s seven chakras. Herrera explains that each color emits its own frequency—color enters through the eye and reaches the brain, which redirects the signal throughout the body. Take an online test (itszen30.com) to identify which of your chakras are overactive, underactive or balanced to select the optimal shade—for recommended wear of 30 minutes each day. 

Rodriguez and Herrera also opened a permanent space for YogART (yogartinc.com), a series of seven classes blending color and chakra-opening poses. Participants wear ZEN30 glasses in a color-lit studio and follow a sequence of poses led by a certified yogi. The classes, which cost $7 per person, per class, are held at Studio One on the second Sunday of each month from 11 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. 

The Bcenter (bcenter.org), an Orlando-based nonprofit serving stroke survivors, cites chromotherapy as a recommended rehabilitation therapy. “Research suggests that stroke survivors with an appreciation for the arts recover better,” says CEO Valerie Greene who, influenced by her own success with color therapy, held two art/color therapy sessions for stroke patients. Vanness Johnson, art director for Heroes of Freedom, a local nonprofit serving disabled veterans, agrees: “Art gives [veterans] an avenue to dig deeper within themselves and express,” with a goal to combat post-traumatic stress. 

Colorpuncture, developed by Peter Mandel, a German naturopath and acupuncturist, is another alternative healing technique that involves the application of colored light frequencies to “acu-points” on the skin. Each color consists of different wavelengths and stimulates intra-cellular communication, according to The Body Therapy Center in Palm Coast, an area colorpuncture site. Author and teacher Manohar Croke, Director of the U.S. Esogetic Colorpuncture Institute, presented at the International Light Association’s annual conference recently on the possibilities, proclaiming: “I believe colorpuncture is a remarkable adjunct tool to help psychotherapists deepen and enhance their work with their clients” to surface and release the imprints of psychological stress and trauma.” 

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