3 Ways to Prepare For Seasonal Changes

seasonsAs the transition from summer to fall begins, changes start to happen externally as well as internally. The days become shorter and the air gets cooler; our bodies change to adapt as well. Here are three ways to prepare for the fall season ahead along with the beginning of the yin cycle.

1. Let go of negativity

The autumn season represents the time when the lungs and large intestine are of the utmost importance. This season is especially an important time to let of negative energy in your life.

Negativity doesn’t just affect your psychological health but your physical health as well. You can help get rid toxicity in your life by being aware of the causes and surrounding yourself with positive energy and people who make you happy.

2. Spend time outside

Because fall is focused on the lungs, spending more time outside can help strengthen this organ and increase your immune system as cold and flu season starts to emerge.

Spend time in nature away from city pollution where you can breathe clean, cool air. Autumn time is the perfect opportunity to do this and refresh and strengthen the lungs.

3. Acupuncture

Acupuncture treatment can help you physically as well as mentally prepare for the change in seasons.

Some find it difficult to let go of the summer season and transition to shorter, cooler days. Acupuncture can ease this transition and make sure your body and energy are flowing properly.

Sources:
http://www.chinesemedicineliving.com/blog/nutrition/seasons/fall/

5 Alternative Treatments and Home Remedies for Psoriasis

person-pointing-at-psoriasis-on-armFor people with psoriasis, suffering from painful symptoms like inflamed, flaking and red skin is not pleasant. The chronic skin condition is due to an overactive immune system that can be triggered by a number of internal and external factors. Many Western treatments include steroid creams and oral medications that come with a slew of unwanted side effects.

Below are alternative treatments that are safe and natural and can help reduce symptoms of psoriasis, leading you back to better health.

1. Herbal Remedies

● Aloe Vera: The gel from this cactus plant can be used generously on your skin to reduce redness and scaling caused by psoriasis. Aloe vera can be found in almost any grocery or health store.

● Tea Tree Oil: Tea tree oil is thought to have antiseptic properties. It can sooth irritated skin or scalp and can be applied daily.

● Turmeric: Turmeric has strong anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. Because of this, turmeric has been found to reduce psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis flares. Turmeric can be found in pill form as well as powder form to be added to food.

● Dead Sea Salts: Soaking in a bath with Dead Sea salts or Epsom salts can remove scaly skin and reduce itching. It is recommended that you use warm water and stay in the tub for 15 minutes.

2. Mindfulness/Meditation

Mindfulness and meditation practices have been found to be effective in people suffering with chronic pain like psoriasis.

Meditation is the practice of focusing your attention on the moment and ridding yourself of all external thoughts you may be having. This can lead to a state of relaxation and calmness, bringing balance to your body and mind.

Mindfulness, which is practiced in meditation, includes becoming completely aware of your body, externally and internally. This can be a seated meditation that is focused on awareness of mind, body and senses.
3. Exercise

Not only is exercise important to maintain overall health and wellness, it is especially beneficial for people with psoriasis.

Because people with psoriasis have an increased risk of heart disease and type 2 diabetes, regular exercise can prove very helpful.

Many find it hard to exercise because of the chronic pain associated with psoriasis. Exercise programs in the water prove to be an effective alternative that is easier on the body and still allows you to build endurance and strength.

Other simple ways to fit more exercise into your day include short walks, taking the stairs and stretching.
4. Massage

Seeing a licensed massage therapist can help reduce symptoms and pain. Massage promotes the function of muscle and connective tissue and can increase relaxation and circulation in the body.

5. Acupuncture

Acupuncture has been proven to be effective in minimizing chronic pain in patients. Acupuncture takes a holistic approach with the body and symptoms you may be experiencing. By returning the body to its natural flow, acupuncture can help reduce the intensity of symptoms of psoriasis.
Home Remedies:

● Soak a towel in cold milk and apply to affected area to relieve itching.
● Add ½ cup ground oatmeal into a warm bath.
● Rub the affected area with the inner side of a banana peel.
● Apply aloe vera gel to affected area.
● Cut several fresh willow branches into 3-inch stems and place in a pot with plenty of water. Bring to a boil, then simmer until water becomes black. Wash affected areas with the water three times daily.
● Slice 15 water chestnuts and soak in 3 oz. of rice vinegar crush and store in a sealed jar. Apply the paste to affected area and cover with gauze. Change daily.

Sources:
https://www.psoriasis.org/about-psoriasis

Germ Warfare

Portrait of a young couple suffering from the flu together

You never have to wonder when the cold and flu season is around the corner. The pharmaceutical industry will be sure that you are reminded of its arrival.  The pharmaceutical industry and the medical community at large are depending on you to leave the fate of your health and well being up to the workings of chemical-laden pills and shots rather than the innate power that runs your body and the living world around you.

The reality is that germs don’t make you sick. Rather, your body’s inability to fend off germs and foreign invaders is what results in you succumbing to illness.  Think about it… How is it possible that a family of 5 people living under the same roof can have completely different reactions during flu season?
Assuming that everyone is exposed to the same germs and viruses, if the sickness were attributed completely to the virus, everyone would get sick and exhibit the same reaction and symptoms.

What happens in reality is that one or two family members get ill while the others don’t. Clearly the issue is not the germs, but the body’s response to them, caused by an individual’s immune system.

Chances are the last time you got sick you were running yourself ragged, missing sleep, eating improperly, slacking on your nutrition, all stressed out from work, skipping your acupuncture sessions, and neglecting your workouts. This is a vicious pattern that many of us fall into and it’s one that weakens the body and allows germs to take hold.

Your best defense against the flu, colds, or any other germ-borne illness is not to drug yourself, but to bolster your internal defenses. You stand your best chance of being at your healthiest when you have an optimally functioning nervous system and immune response.

So come in for an acupuncture tune-up, keep your lifestyle habits in good order, and maintain a positive attitude. Do so, and those pesky little germs don’tstand a chance!

Recipe for Autumn Balance

autumnRecipe for Autumn Balance

Below is a recipe to bring your body to balance in autumn. These foods will strengthen your immune system as your body becomes more susceptible to illness with the changing weather.

 

 

Butternut Squash Soup

1 large butternut squash
1 medium onion
2 cloves of garlic
1 stalk of celery
boiled chicken meat
salt, pepper, cinnamon, nutmeg

If you have a blender, blend the squash until smooth for a puree-style soup. If not, you can chop up the squash instead.

Begin by chopping up all ingredients and boiling the squash in a large pot. After the squash is mostly cooked, add the vegetables and chicken to the pot. Simmer the soup for a few minutes. When the soup is done, add spices as desired.

Butternut squash soup is not too difficult to make and contains nutrients like vitamin A to help protect your body from the upcoming flu and cold season.

Sources:
http://www.chinahighlights.com/travelguide/chinese-food/medicinal-cuisine.htm

Can Acupuncture Effectively Treat Psoriasis?

person-pointing-at-psoriasis-on-arm

Affecting approximately 125 million people – or about 2-3% of the global population – psoriasis is one of the most common autoimmune diseases in the world. It’s characterized by the chronic formation of skin lesions, red patches, papules and plaque. These formations may appear in localized areas of the body or throughout the entire body, depending on an individual’s condition.

Psoriasis is known to trigger intense bouts of itching. The sensation can be so intense that it causes the individual to scratch infection-prone sores into his or her skin. Regardless of how bad it itches, you should never scratch your psoriasis, as it will only make the condition worse.

As with most autoimmune diseases and disorders, psoriasis is caused by an overactive immune system. The immune system is responsible for fending off potentially harmful viral and bacterial infections. It does this by producing key inflammatory hormones. Normally, it produces the right amount of these hormones, but there are times when it produces too much; resulting in conditions such as psoriasis.

The good news is that acupuncture may offer relief of psoriasis and its related symptoms. Acupuncture can have very positive effects on the immune system. When we are sick or dealing with chronic illness, our bodies are not able to function properly. This can be due to the body’s natural energy being restricted or blocked. Acupuncture works by treating the whole body and releasing any abnormalities through acupuncture points. By doing so, the body is able to function as it should and the immune system is strengthened because of this.

With psoriasis, the Spleen 10 xue hai acupuncture point is a popular choice because it targets the immune system.

One study found acupuncture to be effective at treating psoriasis, particularly when western medicine has been exhausted. “Our experience indicates that acupuncture is induced an effective therapeutic modality for psoriasis, particularly when the western medical management is unsuccessful. We speculated about the possible involvement of the cutaneous reticuloendothelial system in the clearance of the skin lesions,” wrote the study’s researchers.

Give me a call today to learn how you can get back on track to better health!
Sources: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/1357925