Monthly Archives: February 2017

Chinese Medical Herbs

Did you know that the pharmaceuticals — old and new — that find their way into your medicine cabinet are direct descendants of the herbs your ancestors tucked into their medicine bags? Health care providers who ‘know-their-herbs’ are uplifted by Spring, and welcome humanity’s oldest friends as they stand up once again in woodlands and gardens. This is a primordial relationship: one our forebears depended on for their strength and health. Without herbs the human race might not exist today.

The Power of Chinese Medical HerbsThe power of these plants is proven every day in the Oriental medicine treatment room, and is particularly poignant in Spring, when, according to Five Element Theory the Liver and Gallbladder are particularly active, processing more ‘Chi,’ (Life-force/Energy) than during other times of year. When these organs are healthy and balanced, calm and creativity flow; when they’re not, irritation and frustration are common symptoms — and Chinese medical herbs and acupuncture provide the remedy.

Today, so many of us are so busy trying to balance so many different requirements in our lives, to the point where the energy that powers our organs gets out-of-balance; and logically, if my organs are out-of-balance, I am out of balance. And while you can’t easily change the situations that cause the migraines, eczema, hypertension, general stress, or whatever ails you, you can get relief from ancient herbal formulas — what some have called “forgotten foods” — that have been helping people with their health through the millennia.

So in Spring, when for one reason or another you feel some tightness in the jaw, jittery nerves, or pressure in the head, drinking a Chinese medicine herbal “tea,” comprised of 24 different herbs, can transform those discomforts into a feeling of calm and balance.

Feel The PowerSo as you continue to flow through the seasons of your life, keep in mind how Oriental medicine can help you cultivate and maintain your health. If you’re new to this type of medicine and want to get started, begin by paying attention to what you’re feeling so you can discuss your symptoms with someone who can show you the next steps to take.

Kitty Bradshaw is a licensed acupuncturist, with an advanced clinical degree in Oriental Medicine. Studying and working with Oriental Medicine since 1986, Kitty combines Traditional Oriental Medicine with Taoist healing methods to offer healing possibilities beyond the level of standard health care. Her deep understanding of Chinese medical herbs, combined with her intuitive abilities to diagnose and treat difficult problems, has helped many people regain and maintain their health.

Chinese Medical Herbs

Oriental medicine takes an integrative approach to health and well-being by combining Chinese medical herbs, acupuncture, acupressure, and Chi Kung. These powerful practices have been used for thousands of years and are very effective for treating a wide variety of ailments, in addition to cultivating and maintaining long-term health.

Chinese Herbal Medicine

Herbs and humans have a primordial relationship, one so essential that you could say that without herbs the human race might not exist today because our ancestors depended on them for their strength and health.

Chinese medical herbs comprise a unique system of herbal medicine, where the herbalist combines a specific mix, or ‘formula,’ of individual herbs to help address a particular health problem. This approach to herbal medicine is based on the ancient wisdom that instructs: “the whole is greater than the sum of it’s parts.”

Chinese medical herbs comprise a unique system of herbal medicine.

Embodying this ancient knowing, a Chinese herbal formula is like a symphony which combines a wide array of instruments to achieve a musical effect not attainable by an individual instrument playing on its own. An experienced Chinese medicine herbalist knows how to combine herbs in way that generates a greater magnitude of healing, and like an accomplished “composer” can adapt generalized formulas, to specifically address your unique health situation.

Just as a well conducted orchestra creates beautiful music, a properly composed Chinese herbal formula supports the beautiful feeling of health.

Kitty Bradshaw is a licensed acupuncturist, with an advanced clinical degree in Oriental Medicine. Studying and working with Oriental Medicine since 1986, Kitty combines Traditional Oriental Medicine with Taoist healing methods to offer healing possibilities beyond the level of standard health care. Her deep understanding of Chinese medical herbs, combined with her intuitive abilities to diagnose and treat difficult problems, has helped many people regain and maintain their health.

Alternative Health Solutions

Alternative health in its simplest form is natural healing.
Using nature’s resources to cure the ills and diseases
that plague our society. Relieving pain without using toxic
drugs is the best result when one chooses alternative health
solutions. Alternative health may be answer to the problem of increased
medical costs.

Dr. Pelzer, in his book ‘The Health Revolution states

“Approximately one seventh of the U.S. economy, about $1.5 trillion,
is devoted to what is erroneously called the ‘healthcare’ business.
Healthcare is a misnomer, as this one seventh of the economy is really
devoted to the sickness business – defined in the dictionary as ‘ill
health, illness, a disordered, weakened, or unsound condition, or a
specific disease.’

Changing our health when we change our choices is the first step to
achieving optimum health. Some alternative health techniques include
massage, acupuncture, nutrition, therapy, aromatherapy and stress
management.

Practitioners in the field of alternative health suggest, that our
mind is sick if our body has disease. Getting the body in balance
with the mind and spirit is the second but very important step to
achieving optimum health and vitality.

Alternative health is more than eating organic vegetables, taking
vitamin supplements or joining a yoga class. Alternative health is
a calm state of mind that nourishes the body and the soul. Choosing
alternative health does not negate the advances of traditional
medicine.

People who choose to follow the lifestyle have little
need for traditional medicine. What alternative health offers
is the opportunity for the individual to direct their own life
choices toward a lifestyle that promotes robust health.

The third step to reaching optimum health is body awareness..
Alternative health Sickness in the body is usually a symptom of
an imbalance. Become aware of the body in order to get the three
areas in harmony. Alternative health trains the client to find
a bonding of the physical, emotional and spiritual.

The Alternative health lifestyle can be combined with other positive
healthful endeavors but the basic doctrine of alternative health
involve holistic nutrition, holistic healing and Accupunture.

Holistic Nutrition is all about foods that nourish the body.
Our food choices affect how we feel, how we look and our health
quotient. The choices we make now will affect our well-being for
many years to come. The goal is to nourish the bodies for optimal
health

Holistic Healing or Acupuncture

Herbs, exercise, nutrition, massage, were the primary tools of
the Chinese physician a thousand years ago The Chinese doctors
could identify and prescribe
therapeutic responses for the whole
range of human ailments.

What we call alternative health today is really a recreation of
Ancient Chinese medicine that is over 3000 years old.

The body responds almost instantly to alternative health methods.
When the nutritional requirements of the body are supplied, there
is an instant increase in the feeling of well being and vitality.
With the addition of nutritional supplementation and herbal
augmentation where warranted, the body can reverse the disease
process.

With surveillance and correction, the remission of some symptoms
are alleviated. The body starts to heal itself and a reversal of
negative symptoms is observed. The body is quick to respond to
alternative medicine therapy.

Taking responsibility for our health is the end result to
alternative health involvement. We observe and become aware of
the messages that the body send. We respond To these messages
by augmenting our diets, becoming more aware of what our
Bodies need . We learn and educate our minds and our bodies
to work together to rid the body of the negative inputs.

You Should Know About Acupuncture

Today’s interest in Eastern remedies has led many to go to acupuncture as a way to heal the wounds and pains of shoulders, back, and body aches. Stress related pains and other kinds of trauma can be relieved by the wonders of acupuncture and other natural and homeopathic remedies.

Developed some time in ancient origins, it spread through the decades and the world until it became part of traditional Chinese medicine. This type of medicine considers your entire body as one whole that has many different component like systems. Sometimes these systems are directly connected, other times not associated, but your health is determined by the balance of these systems. Acupuncture strives to find the fourteen channels through which blood flows and various other points are also touched upon and treated. These channels lead to the lungs, intestines, stomach, spleen, heart, small intestine, bladder, kidney, pericardium, gall bladder, and the intangible.

When an acupuncturist decides what to do, they focus on the face and tongue to determine the size and color and to see if there is any tension or coating or absence or presence of teeth marks. Also they will listen to see if you are wheezing or making any particular sounds or if you are attending to your body odor. Finally, they will see if you have chills or fever, perspiration, a good or bad appetite, thirst and taste, pain, sleep, and whether you are enjoying proper bladder functions. This is sort of like a typical physical, except in this case you will be diagnosed about how much your body is in harmony.

When you go in for an acupuncture treatment, you can expect to be stuck with needle points in the webs between your thumbs and palms in order to target the head and hands. Most likely you will feel a twinge of sensation and then some twitching between your thumb and hand. Some patients experiences some severe pain, others have bad headaches and feelings of nausea, as well as a relief of their headache. Needle points also can be placed on your head in various points that affect and dilate your scalp’s blood vessels, which are meant to relieve any headaches you might have.

This natural remedy is often stated as much safer than any other kind of remedy out there. The effects of taking drugs can be much more harmful to the body and when experiencing pain, taking various steroids or pain killers can cause acidity problems and other dysfunctions in the body. But with this natural homeopathic remedy, you will be certain that you will not expose the insides of your body to anything that could be potentially harmful or even toxic to your body.

Certainly there are many dangers, too. You are at a higher risk of getting any kind of intravenously transmitted diseases through any unclean needles. Also, you need to be sure you select a professional acupuncturist because many people set up shop with no experiences or with unclean and shoddy materials. They will most likely damage your nerves and cause you more pain than relief. Doing your research before deciding to get this procedure is a very wise idea and a necessary precaution. But, if you choose wisely and manage to get a good procedure done, you might experience immense pain relief.

Health Goals

Most of us believe self control is largely a character issue. However recent research suggests that willpower by itself is inherently limited. Because the prefrontal cortex (PFC), the area of the brain in charge of willpower, can become easily overtaxed willpower can decrease dramatically when you try to do too much too soon. Studies show that the PFC can be improved by focusing on 1 behavior change at a time which in turn can lead to other positive changes. One such study asked college students to improve their posture and over the course of two weeks noticed other improvements of self control happened as a consequence. The key take away here is that the PFC cannot process multiple requests to change at the same time. Some of my patients who attempted to do too many health goals at once were not successful.

Three tips to help you reach your health goals

1. The brain cannot handle multiple health goals at once
For example, all it takes is 5 extra bits of information to decrease willpower in the PFC. One study tested willpower by having subjects choose a fruit salad or a slice of chocolate cake while keeping in mind a two digit or seven digit set of numbers. Those trying to juggle 7 digits were twice as likely to choose the cake over a fruit salad. The solution is to focus on only 1 health goal at a time. This way you not only start your health goal but continue to commit to it until it becomes a positive habit and is successful.

2. Calories do count but not in the way you think
Another study gave one set of students lemonade with artificial sweetener and the second set of students lemonade with sugar. After viewing a video all the students were tested on several self control tasks. Those given the lemonade with artificial sugar, which had 0 calories, performed tasks less successfully than those who had consumed the sugar lemonade, which contained calories. The conclusion suggests that calories are needed to supply the brain with food to function effectively and increase self control. Skipping meals to lose weight or because you are too busy only makes it harder to maintain your willpower and will often lead to overeating or eating snack foods. I recommend you plan your meals and eat at regular times throughout the day to maintain proper blood sugar levels, and nourish the brain so it supports your health goals.

3. Even simple exercise is important to maintaining your health goals
Exercise releases positive endorphins so you end up feeling better once you adhere to a regular activity routine. By exercise I mean just doing some daily physical activity to start. For example it could mean something as simple as a daily walk around the block or joining a gym. Exercise activates the brain reward center which helps us feel good, improves our mood, helps us sleep better and stimulates the flow blood to nourish the brain.

Many of my patients talk to me about losing weight and ask if acupuncture alone can help. I always make the joke that if acupuncture worked perfectly for weight loss by itself I’d be a wealthy woman. What I do know is acupuncture can help sustain your health goals in these areas:

o Become more relaxed which cuts back on anxiety induced cravings
o Feel clear headed and better able to concentrate on your goals and daily tasks
o Have more energy to sustain your commitment to positive behavior change
o Improve your digestion which allows the body to efficiently process the food you eat

Investing In Your Health

This is the starting point for learning how to thrive, as investing in your health is one of the most powerful steps you can take to dramatically enhance the quality of your daily life. It sets the stage for success in every dimension of life. When you have more energy, confidence, mental clarity, and improved physical health, you are more able to gracefully handle daily stressors and challenges that would have previously overwhelmed you. Composure, control, and peace become the foundations of your life rather than isolated experiences.

Committing to and being proactive about your health in this way will lead to not only immediate improvement in your life, but will also set the stage for greater vitality and resilience as you age. In this way, there is a strong pre- ventative aspect to claiming optimal health right now. Most of us have been taught to put off our own needs until our bodies and minds are screaming at us for acknowledgment. We wait until we are given a wake up call that usually comes in the form of illness or worsening health problems.

But what if you were to be proactive right now? What if you decided to care for yourself enough to take the steps necessary to optimize your current state of health, thereby preventing future problems? What is preventing you from living a life of boundless energy and radiant health right now?

These are powerful questions to ask yourself. You see, most of us are caught in a constant game of negotiation with ourselves to buy more time to put off the most important things in life. We think we have time to postpone our deepest needs for health, peace, and balance.

What we are getting at is that, in order to thrive in the modern world, it is essen- tial that you commit right NOW to your health as a top priority. This means:

1. Partnering with the right holistic and allopathic (Western) medical practitioners

2. Eating an organic whole foods diet

3. Exercising 3-4 times a week

4. Taking time each day to be present using relaxation techniques

5. Freeing yourself of any limiting beliefs that undermine your health and quality of life

As with all important priorities in life, it is essential that you surround yourself with a community of people that can inspire and guide you in the direction of optimal health. We all need this kind of guidance or else we easily feel alone and confused. As you will see, a skilled acupuncturist can be an incredibly helpful resource in this regard.

Let’s summarize the main points here, then we will jump into an exploration of Chinese medicine and how it can help you achieve your health goals:

1. Your health and quality of life depend on the choices you make every moment you are alive

2. You can choose to claim a much higher level of health right now

3. You do this by freeing harmful beliefs, establishing healthy lifestyle patterns, and allying yourself with a team of skilled holistic and allopathic medical practitioners

4. NOW is the only moment we have; putting off your deepest needs will create bigger problems down the road