*Things I have learned from being an acupuncturist, above and beyond the 3000 years of theory, the requisite biomedicine and microbiology courses, the location and function of the acupuncture points, current acupuncture research, the names and functions of hundreds of herbs, various acupuncture techniques, how to write an herbal formula, anatomy and physiology, etc. In short, what I’ve learned beyond what they teach you in becoming an acupuncturist.
I recently got asked the following question: “What health tips would you recommend to all your patients, in general? I know acupuncture is very individualized, but what kinds of things should everyone be doing, regardless of their condition?” So, as we enter into the New Year, over the next 10 days, I’ll offer you my top 10 health tips for everyone…a place to start your journey to a healthier, happier you.
For most of my life up until that point, the relationship with my body was one of seeing how far I could push it. I was an avid long distance runner, used to speed workouts on the track at 6:00 am and long runs at a pace that I couldn’t really keep up. I was used to staying up really late to write papers and hang out with friends. The physical limits of my body were something to be pushed through – not something to learn from and listen to, from which to hear a story of my being. Acupuncture changed that for me.
The above mentioned article recounts a recent scientific study in which mice that were given high amounts of beneficial probiotics appeared less stressed – and actually produced less stress hormones – when put into abruptly stressful situations, such as being dropped into a pool of water. Moreover, when the connection between the gut and the brain was severed, these mice no longer showed decreased signs of stress. The author concludes that “There's nothing metaphorical about "gut feelings," for what happens in the gut really does influence what we feel.”
Here at Stepping Stone, we treat a lot of women during pregnancy to help alleviate uncomfortable symptoms and make the 9 months as pleasant – and healthy – as possible. Probably the most common reason that pregnant women seek out acupuncture treatment is for nausea and vomiting – the famous “morning sickness.”
Summer is the season of the Heart, of Fire, and of Joy in the Traditional Chinese Medicine system of correspondences. It is a time to celebrate vitality, to nurture that which is most important to us, to connect with those people and things that are dear to us, and to do things that make us happy and joyful.
Something about the lotus flower resonates with us, with humanity, throughout time and space. It inspires us to be our better selves, to seek peace and sunlight amidst the darkness, mud, and turmoil. It conjures up feelings of peace, tranquility, and serenity. It reminds us that there is good and beauty in the world, in us.