Year of the Sheep – Gently embracing service.

By |2015-01-09T05:56:26+00:00January 9th, 2015|Qigong, Meditation, Tai Chi, Traditional Chinese Medicine|

photo cred: http://www.shetlandwoolbrokers.co.uk/Shetland-Wool-and-Sheep Last year, did you gallop away with the Yang Wood Horse and ride into the potential of accomplishing big goals and expansive ideas? Or did you get trampled by the adolescent hooves of impatience, fall off the saddle and get dragged along with it’s never-stopping, forward momentum? This January, you may feel one last big push as the horse darts into it’s sunset. Soon we shift focus and greet the Yin Wood Sheep. The sheep symbolizes good fortune, peace and abundance. Think of the lamb kneeling before it’s mother to nurse. With the sheep comes nurturing, gentleness, peace, calm, contentment. Life’s hectic pace is slowed and people connect with their more caring, sensitive and emotional sides. A theme with the sheep is the herd (our families and close friends). This year is an auspicious year for rooting deeper into [...]

Year of the Horse – Galloping into NEW horizons.

By |2014-01-07T23:39:16+00:00January 7th, 2014|Qigong, Meditation, Tai Chi, Traditional Chinese Medicine|

In a few weeks, we leave behind the Yin Water Snake and jump boldly onto the saddle of the Yang Wood Horse. 2014 promises big potential *IF* you’ve embraced the 2013 snake appropriately. Did you shed your skin and slither through the dirt last year? The snake always brings up deeper core questions of morality and wisdom. For many, 2013 was about their core. Did you face it with suspicion or curiosity? Were you triggered and shut down or did you dig deep and study your patterns? The Chinese base a lot of things on cycles. The passage of time is no different. Each year is assigned an animal of the Chinese Zodiac. There are 12 zodiac animals (Rabbit, Tiger, Dragon, Snake, Horse, Ram, etc.) and each of these animals have their own personality. But just like there are many different types of tigers [...]

Acupuncture and Emotional Wellbeing

By |2013-10-03T21:16:22+00:00October 3rd, 2013|Modern Imbalances, Traditional Chinese Medicine|

As an Acupuncturist, I often run into clients suffering from physical pain. They schedule an appointment with one goal in mind, "I hurt, fix me.". It's phenomenal that one would reach out for assistance with physical issues that affect their lives. I am happy to help. Whether they come to see me for right-sided, lateral Knee pain, a splitting migraine, weight loss or even digestive complaints, clients are often shocked when I ask them about their emotions. "What does my stress, or my anxiety have to do with my back pain?", a client has asked me. This is where education comes in to play. I explain to them the holistic approach to Chinese Medicine and Acupuncture. That by looking at every angle of a person's life — whether it's physical activities, emotional habits, dietary choices or even thought patterns — an Acupuncturist can uncover [...]

How does Acupuncture work?

By |2013-05-07T12:00:30+00:00May 7th, 2013|Traditional Chinese Medicine|

Almost daily, I am asked how Acupuncture works.  I've come up with a few explanations, some certainly easier to understand than others.  I thought I'd attempt once again, here in blog form.  I am hopeful that this explanation will be my best yet! Much like our country with it's infrastructure of roadways connecting important cities, landmarks and people, our bodies have an infrastructure in which electrical impulses, chemical signals, blood and other vital substances travel.  There are large interstates in which many materials travel at great speeds, there are smaller highways that go to specific places.  Smaller still, there are neighborhood streets and alleyways that connect organs, tissues and cells.  We call these roadways Meridians, Channels or Networks. Sometimes, like with roadways, there are traffic jams which clog up the movement of vital substances, bringing healthy flow to a standstill.  Acupuncturists are trained to [...]

Anxiety

By |2013-04-30T12:00:13+00:00April 30th, 2013|Modern Imbalances, Traditional Chinese Medicine|

In Traditional Chinese Medicine, the Heart is considered the Emperor of emotions.  A fair and balanced ruler will preside over a fair and balanced country.  If you are experiencing anxiety, chances are your emperor is unbalanced. Day-to-day, healthy individuals experience anxiety and stress.  In those times, recovery is smooth and easy.  Our normal lives resume with not much effort.  If the Heart is unbalanced, though, anxiety can stay in the system and uncomfortable symptoms will manifest — persistent worry, insomnia, shortness of breath, restlessness, poor concentration, irritability, muscle tension, overreacting or being easily startled and even the feeling of a repetitive, intense perceptible heartbeat (also called "heart palpitations").  These symptoms can often creep up on us — feeling as if they come out of nowhere.  Other's report that they can associate their symptoms with certain triggers. What causes the Heart to become unbalanced?  To [...]

Allergies

By |2013-04-24T12:00:06+00:00April 24th, 2013|Modern Imbalances, Traditional Chinese Medicine|

If you are like 10-25% of the world, Spring-time brings on sneezing, runny nose, itchy eyes and congestion.  Whether you are dealing with acute or chronic allergies, these symptoms are no doubt uncomfortable.  Conventional medicine used nasal decongestants, pain relievers, antihistamines, drugs that thin mucus and even antibiotics.  Sometimes these drugs are ineffective and some can even cause dependency. Traditional Chinese Medicine sees an underlying constitutional deficiency in people who suffer from allergies.  There is a defense system (called Wei Qi) that circulates around our body, protecting us from exterior invasion.  Allergic symptoms point to this defensive Qi being weakened.  Though it is best to address this weakened state before allergy season begins, there are still somethings that can be done today that can ease suffering. 1. Stinging Nettle is a natural alternative to antihistamines and doesn't have the uncomfortable side effects of drowsiness [...]

Basics of Nutrition

By |2013-04-16T12:00:08+00:00April 16th, 2013|Modern Imbalances, Traditional Chinese Medicine|

More and more, I am finding myself discussing nutrition with my patients.  I find it foundational to health and unavoidable.  We are, indeed, what we eat.  Luckily, nutrition is all about choices.  Below, I've written a list of ten choices I recommend to those who ask: 1. Chew.  If we chew our food more, it keeps us from shoveling too much into our mouths.  It also stimulates digestive enzymes released in our mouth, starting the digestive process immediately.  If we don't chew, our body has to work harder to digest our food.  Wouldn't you rather that energy be used elsewhere? 2. Read labels.  It shouldn't be difficult to read the list of ingredients on the label of your groceries.  If you can't pronounce it, or don't know what it is (preservatives, sweeteners, food colorings, etc.), chances are, it is not healthy for you to [...]

Sleep

By |2013-03-26T12:00:09+00:00March 26th, 2013|Modern Imbalances, Traditional Chinese Medicine|

One of the most powerful natural healing remedies available to us is simple sleep.  I am always surprised how often a good nights sleep will relieve a pain, calm nerves, reduce a rash, alleviate nausea or even stop a headache.  If you struggle with sleep - difficulty falling asleep, staying asleep, or waking up - maybe a few of the suggestions below will bring you some rest. 1. There is a Chinese phrase, "One hour of sleep before midnight is better than two hours of sleep after midnight."  In Chinese medicine, our Liver rejuvenates and stores our blood, preparing it for the next day.  It does this around the hours of 11pm - 3am.  Getting to sleep before 11pm allows your Liver to restore your blood for the next day instead of maintaining your blood while you are awake. 2. I find that one [...]

Inflammation

By |2013-03-19T12:00:35+00:00March 19th, 2013|Traditional Chinese Medicine|

Inflammation is a common topic now a days.  Both conventional and traditional practitioners are concerned about the prolonged side effects of chronic inflammation.  But what exactly is inflammation, what causes it, and how come it can lead to so many issues? When the body encounters a stimuli (a pathogen, an irritant or an injury) it naturally responds with a biological immune cascade to initiate healing.  This is an ACUTE, short-lived process that increases blood flow to the area and starts a biochemical reaction resulting in Pain, Heat, Redness, Swelling and sometimes even Immobility.  This is how we heal, and it is natural. If, though, the stimuli continues to damage the same area, the irritated cells or tissue become thickened, or worse, can die!  Chronic irritants can be: non-degradable pathogens, viral infections, persistent foreign bodies, autoimmune reactions and foods that are overly processed and refined. [...]

Let me see your tongue!

By |2013-02-11T12:00:36+00:00February 11th, 2013|Traditional Chinese Medicine|

Photo Credit: http://kaleidoscope.cultural-china.com Last week, I had a patient ask me, "What in the world are you looking at when you tell me to show you my tongue?"  Good question.  Let's talk about it. First and foremost, Traditional Chinese Medicine uses many different types of diagnostic methods to uncover the root cause of imbalance.  When you come into the office, I listen to your voice, I look at your skin color, I watch your gestures and your gate, I even use my nose to pick up subtle clues.  This all happens within the first minute of us talking.  After I ask about your life style and any symptoms you may have (all the while intently listening to your word choice and your tone, inflection and pace), I'll ask you to get up on the table where I can feel your pulse (sometimes [...]