Health Articles

Read these great articles to learn more about:

Performance Enhancement through Food Therapy

Scalp Acupuncture May Help Children with Autism

Deconstructing Cravings


Acupuncture and Eczema


Infertility and Acupuncture


Acupuncture and Men's Fitness Goals


Why Women Need Weight Training


Acupuncture and Athletes

Acupuncture & Headaches

 

Headache is the most common symptom, however the cause is complex.  90% of people have experienced some episode of headaches in their lives.  Headache is a symptom, not a disease.  I will discuss tension headaches, migraine headaches, cervical headaches, and myogenic headaches in this article, which are commonly seen in clinics.

A migraine headache can cause intense throbbing or a pulsing sensation in one area of the head and is commonly accompanied by nausea, vomiting, and extreme sensitivity to light and sound.  Females experience headaches more often than males.  When it occurs in adolescence, it often had cyclical episodes.  More often, it is related to the menstrual cycle.  You usually begin symptoms such as sleepiness, fatigue, depression, flash appeared in front of eyes, numbness in the limbs. and aphasia.  Severe headaches will appear approximately 20-30 minutes after these symptoms disappear.  The headaches start with orbital or forehead unilaterally, then spread lateral and spread around the whole head.  The duration of headache can last up to few hours to few days.  Sleep usually can relieve some degree of headaches.  In Traditional Chinese Medicine, the head is considered the most upper part of the body.  The head is the place where all the yang meridians of the hand and the foot meet, qi and blood of the viserca & organs all flow upward to the head.  We understand this as our head needs energy & blood from our body.  When pathogen obstructs such pathways and nourishment, it interrupts regular circulation of our energy and blood; therefore it cause headache.  When treating headaches with acupuncture, it can regulate vascular sympathetic, release spasm of blood vessels, increase blood flow, and release neuralgia; which ultimately is caused by ischemia due to over sensitive nerve blocking.  Moreover, acupuncture unblocks and harmonizes meridians and channels involved.

A tension headache (tension-type headache) is caused by soft tissue spasms clinically manifest as a diffuse, mild to moderate pain in the head which can often be described as feeling like a tight band around your head.  It is commonly caused by irregularity in life style, over drinking or smoking, insomnia, or not enough sleep.  When headaches occurs during menopause, it is usually induced by endocrine system, depression, anxiety, stress, fatigue, insomnia, etc.  When treating headaches using acupuncture, it reduces the spasm in the soft tissues and balance your body.

Cervicogenic headache is one type of headache that is non-genetic or inherence.  Besides headache, the syndrome characterized by neck pain, stiffness in neck area, pain upon palpation at the local area; induced pain when in certain positions.  Pain can be located anywhere from the neck, nape, orbital, and in the area of shoulder and upper arm.  Patients often feel discomfort in the area of posterior of ear, inferior of ear, oppression, soreness, and pain.  The pain sometimes spread to the forehead, temporal, occipital, neck area.  Some patients experience tinnitus, distension in eye area, stiffness at the neck area, and ear swelling.  Cold, over-exhausting, drinking, emotion can aggravate such pain.  This type of headache often had history of trauma, degeneration discs, compressed nerve caused by degeneration, budged disc/herniated disc and others.  The reason of the headache is caused by cervical spondylosis which induces local muscle spasm.  The spasm irregularities normal circulation of blood flow, accumulate pathogenic substances such as lactic acid, 5-serotonin, etc.  When diagnosis patient with this type of headache, the acupuncturists review CT/ MRI/ X- ray and clinical manifestations to determinate abnormal changes in physiological curvature, disc or soft tissue dysfunction, cervical facet joint instability, neck muscle strain and others.  The human spine is stabilized and marinated by disc, tendon, muscle, cervical joints.  Any over-use, injury, long duration of same head position can cause changes in the cervical disc and facet joints, putting a strain in the soft tissue; therefore aggression to decrease curvature in physiological spine.  The step aggression in this condition is induced loose joint capsule & ligament and neck facet joint instability.  These changes stimulate the neck nerves, muscles, blood circulation and cause a series of symptoms such as headache, neck pain and shoulder pain.  The most common one is caused by neck degeneration at C2-C3 level.  The important symptoms include restricted range of motion, stiffness and pain at local area and occipital area pain.

Myogenic headache is very common in the clinic.  It is a result from chronic tissue ischemia and myofascitis induced by local soft tissue spasm and abnormal accumulation from muscle tissue metabolism.  Long duration of computer or desk work is the most common cause in resulting reduction in muscular blood flow, induce muscle spasm and induce damages in tendon/ligament and myofascial.  The treatment principle in acupuncture is to release spasm, invigorate blood and unblock local channels to resolve headache.

Traditional Chinese Medicine and acupuncture treat headache/ migrant as a symptom.  Each practitioner will review and determinate the cause of the headache and set up a treatment.  From this article, you can find that there are many causes of headaches. The treatment should also be set up base on individual case.  This is the fundamental theory in Traditional Chinese Medicine: same disease different treatment, different treatment same disease.

Performance Enhancement through Food Therapy: A Chinese Medicine Perspective

The standard approach to performance enhancement here in the U.S. is associated with nutrition rooted in the caloric content of carbohydrates, proteins and fats. This Western perspective identifies the biochemical components of the physiological process of breaking down these macronutrients into the body's fuel source ATP (adenosinetriphosphate). However, Chinese medicine has a very different perspective of food and its physiological function. It is based within the qualities of the food associated seasons, temperature, color and taste associated with the five elements. The five elements are rooted in the Yin and Yang theory and recognize the dynamic relationship among the elements and are specifically associated with the temperature and tastes of the foods. ClickHere


Scalp Acupuncture May Help Children With Autism

With the growing concern over a possible link between childhood vaccinations and autism, any good news for practitioners and parents regarding this mysterious disorder certainly is welcome.

A group of Egyptian researchers published findings in the March 2008 issue of The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine that suggest the use of scalp acupuncture might help boost language skills - an area in which children with autism generally are delayed. Click here


 


Deconstructing Cravings!

The body is an amazing source of intelligence. It is always there for you, pumping blood, never skipping a heartbeat, digesting whatever food you put in it and maintaining homeostasis. Is this reliable, intelligent bio-computer making a mistake by craving ice cream or a hamburger or chocolate? Are cravings due to lack of will-power or discipline? I'd like to suggest that cravings are not a problem. They are critical pieces of information that tell you what your body needs.

The important thing is to understand why you crave what you crave. Perhaps your diet is too restrictive or devoid of essential nutrients. Perhaps you are living a lifestyle that is too boring or stressful. Your body tries to correct the imbalance by sending you a message: a craving. A craving for something sweet could mean you need more protein, more exercise, more water or more love in your life. The key to stopping the sugar craving is to understand and deliver what your body really needs.

Your body knows best and is always trying to create balance. However, products like refined foods, sugar, caffeine, alcohol and drugs (which have little or no nutritional value) are confusing to the body. They throw the body off-balance and can create serious cravings as your body tries to get what it needs to restore internal harmony. The more your food is whole and healthy, the easier it is for your body to stay in balance and provide you with a happier, healthier life.

No book or theory can tell you what to eat. Only awareness of your body and its needs can tell you. Of all the relationships in our lives, the one with our body is the most essential. It takes communication, love and time to cultivate a relationship with your body. As you learn to decipher and respond to your body's cravings, you will create a deep and lasting level of health and balance.

The next time you have a craving, treat it as a loving message from your body instead of a weakness. Try these tips to respond to your body:

  • Have a glass of water and wait 10 minutes.
  • Eat a healthier version of what you crave. For example, if you crave sweets, try eating more fruit and sweet or root vegetables.
  • What is out of balance in your life? Is there something you need to express, or is something being repressed? What happened in your life just before you had this craving?
  • When you eat the food you are craving, enjoy it, taste it, savor it; notice its effect. Then you will become more aware and free to decide if you really want it next time.

back to top^


Acupuncture and Eczema

An estimated 15 million people in the United States suffer from eczema, which usually looks like dry, scaly red skin patches accompanied by intense itching. Standard treatment to reduce inflammation and itchiness can include corticosteroids, which have some serious side effects, including cataracts, glaucoma, gastrointestinal effects, hypertension, osteoporosis and weight gain. Now, a group of German researchers from the Technical University of Munich may have an answer to provide relief from the itching.1 Thirty people with eczema were treated right after being exposed to an allergen such as dust mites or pollen. All patients went through three different test conditions. The first treatment condition was "point-specific" acupuncture targeted at areas designed to treat itchy skin (Quchi and Xuehai points). The second treatment condition was "placebo-point" acupuncture treatment where the points selected were not those used to treat itchy skin. The third test condition was no treatment following allergen exposure.

Read More

back to top^


Infertility & Acupuncture

In acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine, Kidney Deficiency is the most common diagnosis in infertility. Deficiencies of Kidney Yin-essence and Kidney Yang-essence must be differentiated.

Read More

back to top^


Men, did you know that Acupuncture can help improve your fitness goals?

For men, it's especially important to focus on kidney essence and energy. This all natural energy source, the kidney essence, provides the fuel necessary for effective workouts. It also helps slow the aging process. Discouraging signs of kidney essence loss include thinning hair, dark puffy circles under the eyes, and fertility struggles.

Read More

back to top^


Why Women Need Weight Training

Again and again, research has shown that women who maintain a regular, moderate strength training program benefit from a long list of health advantages.

Read More

back to top^


Acupuncture and Athletes

All athletes and coaches are involved in a constant search for ways to improve performance and gain a competitive edge over their rivals. Many are finding that acupuncture can often provide that edge.

Read More

back to top^