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Is Cupping Therapy For You?

Cupping therapy is usually used as part of acupuncture or body work treatment. It's been part of Chinese medicine for over 2,500 years.

Cupping therapy is a treatment in which the practitioner creates suction in a cup. And then applies that cup to the body, which then draws the skin up around the cup and under the cup. I first heard about cupping when Gwyneth Paltrow showed up at an awards show with the tell tale signs of a cupping treatment. About a year later, I got to experience it myself at an acupuncture appointment. I had gone for a sinus infection/cold I was fighting. After my cupping treatment I could breath again. It completely took away my congestion.

Cupping brings fresh blood to the area so it tends to improve circulation. It also helps open up the chest. It can be beneficial for the lungs and even menstrual problems and digestive problems, too. My most recent experience with cupping was several weeks ago, when I was healing from a miscarriage. I needed to complete the miscarriage and make sure any tissue or placenta that was stuck inside released, so I could avoid a D&C. Similar to the way cupping helps relieve congestion, it also helps move and “unstick” stagnant energy in the body.

It is not painful, but it doesn’t necessarily feel good. There is an intense feeling of pressure that happens when the suction is formed with the skin and the cup. It fades very quickly, after the initial placement of the cups and it is relaxing after that. The marks last on your body about a week.

Have you ever tried Cupping Therapy?

By Stephanie Brandt Cornais
You can find Stephanie Brandt Cornais at her at her blog, www.MamaAndBabyLove.com

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Treating Eye Disease Holistically With Micro Acupuncture

People turn to acupuncture and other holistic remedies to treat numerous conditions such as allergies, migraines, digestive problems and more, but what about the eyes? When people are faced with an eye condition like glaucoma or macular degeneration, a holistic treatment probably isn’t the first thing that comes to mind.

There is a treatment that has proven to be effective in managing several eye conditions. It’s called Micro Acupuncture.

Acupuncture is a type of Chinese medicine that treats patients by inserting fine needles into specific points along energy pathways in the body called meridians. The practice aims to restore the body’s normal balance and flow of energy, known as Qi, so that organs and systems can work together in harmony to repair the body and maintain health.

Micro Acupuncture stimulates Qi energy and blood flow to the eyes through 48 acupuncture points located in the hands and feet. That’s right – The Micro Acupuncture points are only in the hands and feet. None of the needles come close to the eyes!

Micro Acupuncture is a new system that isn’t associated with other acupuncture systems. The 48 points were discovered in 1984 in Denmark by Freddy Dahlgren. The procedure was originally designed to treat arthritis but has proven to be especially effective in controlling eye disease.

Dr. Andy Rosenfarb, clinical director and founder of Acupuncture Health Associates in Westfield, New Jersey, is one of only five practitioners in the world performing Micro Acupuncture with a specialty in eye conditions. The procedure is rare because there is limited information on how to treat eye diseases holistically. In fact, eye disease is only a small part of the Chinese medicine curriculum, Dr. Rosenfarb says. Because the procedure is rare, Dr. Rosenfarb’s patients come from around the world, including Africa, India and Australia. Dr. Rosenfarb, who has been practicing holistic medicine for about 17 years, uses Micro Acupuncture to treat glaucoma, macular degeneration, retinal detachment, diabetic retinopathy and other eye conditions. About 80% of patients attain their expectations for vision improvement, Dr. Rosenfarb says.

There is a lack of improvement in only 2% of patients who are treated. Micro Acupuncture doesn’t aim to cure the eye disease but rather manage the disease. With the procedure some eye conditions can even revert slightly, allowing patients to manage milder conditions.

For example, a patient might have 50% vision loss because of an eye disease. Micro Acupuncture might be able to bring the patient’s vision loss to about 30% and then maintain it at that point with continued treatment.

The procedure also can slow the rate of vision loss. If a patient is losing her sight at a rate of 3% to 6% a year, Micro Acupuncture might be able to slow that rate to 1% to 2% a year and hold it there with continued treatment. Treatment typically starts with an initial vision test and then five treatments over a period of about two weeks. After the two-week period, the patient receives a second vision test. Dr. Rosenfarb then compares the two vision tests to see whether the treatment is working. If it’s successful, the treatment continues until the patient is satisfied or until there is no additional improvement in the vision tests.

Patients usually continue to receive the Micro Acupuncture treatment once or twice a year to maintain the vision correction. Says one patient who received Micro Acupuncture from Dr. Rosenfarb: “My last eye exam…showed that my eyesight went from 25-40 to 25-30. Also, the pressure in my eyes went from 23 to 18. I am thrilled beyond words.”

Dr. Rosenfarb’s offices are located in Westfield and Watchung, New Jersey. Contact information is available on his website at www.acuvisiontherapy.com.

– By Jessica Braun Jessica Braun is an editor at Wholesome. She can be reached at jessica.braun[at]wholesomeone[dot]com.

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Traditional Chinese Medicine Has a Holistic Viewpoint

Traditional Chinese medicine is about equality and balance. It encompasses yin and yang. They are two opposing, but complementary forces. Keeping the balance between yin,the feminine force, and yang, the masculine force, keeps a body healthy.

If something is out of balance, then the body is ill. Unlike Western medicine, TCM sees the body as a series of interlocking and interactive systems. Not only do the systems, or organs, interact with themselves and each other, they also interact with the world around them.

The body is the natural world made small, and it needs to be kept in balance. Each person has qi, or energy, that runs through channels in their body. This energy is more than just energy, it is the vital life force of that person. Qi runs through everyone and everything. It is part of how the human body interacts with the world.

Blockages of the qi can upset the balance of yin and yang inside a person’s body and cause them to be ill. The most common treatments in chinese medicine all involve getting the qi back into balance. Probably the easiest way to do this is to use herbs.

Traditional Chinese medicine recognizes well over 50,000 different herbs, however not all of them are regularly used. There are five different flavors of herbs. Each of the flavors does a certain thing, and works on a specific part of the body, and is used in certain cures. The five flavors are bitter, sweet, salty, pungent and sour.

  • Bitter
    Bitter herbs are used to help take heat out of the body. If the body is too hot, or cold, the qi is out of balance. Heat and cold don’t mean the particular temperature of a body, it is more the state of being. Bitter herbs are also used to help some stomach ailments as well as being good for the heart.
  • Sweet
    In Chinese medicine the sweet herbs are used for the spleen. They are also use to restore the body’s natural harmony, balance and energy. That is part of why they are also used in pain relief and control.
  • Sour
    The sour herbs are beneficial to the liver, and can help prevent pus in an infection.
  • Salty
    Salty herbs are to be used for kidney problems and thyroid issues.
  • Pungent
    Pungent herbs are good for the lungs and for the circulation.

Only an experienced practitioner should prescribe herbal medicines, because it can be easy to take something that wouldn’t help a person. Herbs and certain foods are prescribed to help balance the qi out.

In TCM, the foods aren’t picked out for any particular nutritional value they might have, but for their qi, or energy essences. This form of medicine is holistic, which means it looks at the entire body as a whole, and how it relates to itself and the world around it.

The body is a series of system that work together, ruled by the qi. Keeping the qi in balance keeps a person healthy.

Author Resource:-> Eu Yan Sang Article From Holistic Health Articles

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Tibetan Medicine vs. Western Medicine

With the goal of raising awareness about Tibetan medicine, the Rubin Museum of Art in New York City opened an inspiring new exhibit, titled “Bodies in Balance: The Art of Tibetan Medicine,” on March 15. Set to run until September 8, the show emphasizes the ancient practice of Tibetan medicine—called Sowa Rigpa or the art of healing.

While Western medicine treats symptoms with drugs and works with isolated components of the body, Tibetan medicine takes on a mind-body-spirit approach and focuses on the bodily system as a whole. Tibetan treatments are aimed at the root of a condition and work synergistically, and pills are made from complex mixtures of natural products.

The reason for the difference between Western reductionist theory and the eastern “system as a whole” philosophy is probably due to an event in history. Before Louis Pasteur discovered the nature of infectious disease—the fact that most infectious diseases are caused by germs—medicine was largely based on physiology and disease was looked at from the perspective of the patient. Balances of various forces were thought to exist in the body: in the West, for example, a medieval doctor may have tried to make you less “choleric” or more “phlegmatic”.1

But when antibiotics were discovered and the germ theory of disease flourished in the early twentieth century, the whole outlook of Western medicine changed. A new scientific approach heavily based on diagnosis began to create the sense that illness was caused by external factors.

Yet Tibetan medicine still follows the view that balances of internal forces called nyepas make up one’s personal constitution. Tibetan doctors do not diagnose patients as having illnesses; on the other hand, they give suggestions on how to balance one’s nyepas and eliminate inflammation. Like practitioners of other kinds of complimentary alternative medicines (like Ayurvedic medicine or Traditional Chinese Medicine), Tibetan doctors believe that each individual has unique health needs.

That being said, a Tibetan doctor’s office, usually decorated with Tibetan books, artwork, and a comfortable chair, somehow exudes a sense of relaxation that is not present in the fluorescent-lit offices of Western doctors. Furthermore, while a visit with a Western doctor is usually very brief, with nurses doing much of the preparation like checking height and weight, measuring pulse, and asking initial questions, a visit with a Tibetan doctor can last up to an hour and is marked by it’s personal nature. The doctor asks you a series of questions about your current state, observes your first urine sample of the day (which you have brought from home with you), and takes your pulse with his hands. He then then looks at your tongue and gives you a personalized checklist of foods to eat (and not to eat) based on your constitution.

In general, Tibetan medicine takes on a holistic approach, as it is more focused on the patient as a whole. While Tibetan doctors accept Western medicine for what it is, they believe that a healthy lifestyle–with sufficient exercise, sleep, nutrition, breath work (like pranayama breathing exercises), and meditation–leads to optimal health.

Written by Nicole Kagan

 

References

  • 1. “Simon & Schuster.” The End of Illness. N.p., n.d. Web. 8 Apr. 2014. books.simonandschuster.com/End-of-Illness/David-B-Agus/9781451610192/excerpt

 


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Chinese Medicine

Traditional Chinese Medicine refers to a broad range of medicine practices sharing common theoretical concepts which have been developed in China and look back on a tradition of more than 2000 years, including various forms of herbal medicine, acupuncture, massage therapy, and dietary therapy.

These practices are a common part of medical care throughout East Asia, but are considered alternative medicine in the western world.

Chinese Medicine’s view of the body is little concerned with anatomical structures, but with the identification of functional entities (which regulate digestion, breathing, aging etc.). While health is perceived as harmonious interaction of these entities and the outside world, disease is interpreted as a disharmony in interaction.

Chinese Medicine diagnosis consists in tracing symptoms to an underlying disharmony, mainly by palpating the pulse and inspecting the tongue.