The Rise In Popularity Of Cupping Therapy

Cupping is the suctioning of a person’s skin through the use of a vacuum seal, rupturing capillaries and pulling blood to the skin surface. This produces the characteristic round and large red and purple spots on the shoulder and back. It’s a very old healing therapy.

Coastal therapists in the ancient Mediterranean would lower patients into water cages to be ravaged by the suctions in the tentacles of octopuses. It wasn’t exactly modern science, but it was nonetheless, effective. At the end of the 19th century, city plumbers often moonlighted as medicine healers, using their plungers to pull unhealthy blood up to the skin surface. Around the 1950s, vacuum salesmen implemented deep suction to treat housewives of their obsession. At the start of the 1990’s angst-filled youths looking for kicks amidst the release of Nirvana CDs used suction hoses in swimming pools to improve skateboarding prowess and feel alive.

Does Cupping Really Have Any Benefits?

Cupping’s one incontrovertible benefit is that it gives a middle finger to the medical establishment that considers any type of ancient healing therapies as quackery or placebo therapy. Celebrities such as Gwyneth Paltrow and especially Olympians such as Michael Phelps promoted this “pseudoscience” and have made this technique a bona fide healing therapy in the eyes millions of adoring young fans. Through their purplish red cupping marks, they had created an army of future Traditional Chinese Medicine healers.

Actually, members of the US swim team who were treated with cupping therapy weren’t much interested in the metaphysical aspects of the technique. According to their trainer, cupping had nothing to do with “life force” or “chi,”“meridians,” or “yin and yang.” For these athletes, it’s just another means to eliminate knots and adhesions in the fascial tissue supporting and wrapping the musculature of the athletes. Cupping aims to pull stuck fascia out of the muscle through decompression rather than attempting to take apart adhered tissues through compression.

Moreover, the athletes who have received treatment aren’t just lying there. As the cupping is administered, they are moving the problematic tissues using their full range of movement. This helps them regain tissue health and improve their movement patterns. According to the trainer, another huge benefit of cupping is that it works immediately. What may take weeks utilizing traditional types of myofascial release and physical therapy just takes less than 10 minutes with cupping.

Driven athletes would try anything that would give them an edge over their competitor. Of course, they ask for advice from reliable sources before they commit themselves to a certain technique. Sometimes, it works, sometimes, it does not. Cupping therapy, however, has millions of adherents that are willing to witness to its wonderful benefits. There are also clinical studies that attest to the effectiveness of this therapy.

For example, dry cupping has been proven in clinical studies to relieve chronic neck pain, as well as pain, stiffness and improve mobility in patients suffering from knee osteoarthritis. Dry cupping improved both objective and subjective measurements of pain.

The Acupressure Massage Technique To Enhance Eyesight

A 5,000 year old component of the ancient Chinese system of healing, acupressure is a natural healing technique that offers a wide variety of health benefits including among others, improved blood and fluid circulation, alleviation of stress, and relief of pain. It helps boost the flow of blood to all the body organs strengthening the health and well being of a person. This very old form of medicine entails the use of massage methods to specific pressure points in the body. Each pressure point is associated with a specific organ. Some pressure points on the hands, for example, are related to the heart while other points are affiliated with the kidneys. Thus, by administering massage therapies to the proper pressure points, a person can enhance circulation to that specific organ so that it reinforces his physical health. Fortunately, anyone can perform these acupressure procedures to alleviate eye strain and increase the health of the eyes caused by much close up work.

This article will talk about a type of eye exercise that anyone can do based on these principles. This eye exercises is known as the acupressure massage technique to enhance eyesight. The following is an explanation of how to do this technique coupled with the benefits it gives for better vision.

This procedure technique can be administered by massaging four important acupressure points surrounding the eyes.

First, press the upper part of the nose with both middle fingers for about five seconds and then release. Then, press the pressure point region positioned at the arc (the hollow of that bone) of both eyebrows with both middle fingers. Apply pressure to this point for five seconds and then release. Next, press the eye sockets’ outer edges (both areas) in a firm fashion and hold the pressure for five seconds then release. Then, finally, end the procedure by pressing the middle of both areas under the eyelids around the each of the eye’s bony sockets. Apply pressure for five seconds and then release.

Regularly performing these acupressure procedures can provide you with a number of benefits. It actually can help lessen tension, stain, and stress in the eye muscles. If you are using the computer for several hours a day and doing a lot of close up that causes eye strain, this becomes especially useful. From this viewpoint, the acupressure massage technique to enhance eyesight becomes quite useful and practical as it can provide eye strain relief related to extended computer use. Moreover, it increases circulation to the blood vessels of the eyes. And since many eye problems are associated with poor blood flow to the optical system, this becomes particularly beneficial.

Generally speaking, acupressure procedures are important components of the ancient Chinese art of healing that treats and heals various physical health conditions. They are done by administering massage techniques to pressure points that are related to specific organs to address health problems and conditions in those specific areas. The acupressure massage for better eyesight technique is a part of this ancient healing practice that boosts blood flow and relieves tension and stress in the eye system to improve a person’s vision

Eliminating Candida Overgrowth Through The Use Of Chinese Herbal Medicine

In Chinese medicine, a Candida diagnosis will usually only come after the healer has identified and evaluated all your symptoms. In the diagnosis, the entire wellbeing of your body is considered and the treatment that’s administered will be an attempt to restore balance in your body.

Yeast or Candida strains that are in the body are usually found in a person’s genitourinary tract and digestive tract, from mouth to anal sphincter. However, when this specific type of fungus thrives in abundance in a person’s body, it can generate certain health issues for that person.

Unfortunately, a lot of individuals suffering from fungal overgrowth treat their problem with conventional Western medicine therapies such as antibiotics that only tend to exacerbate the problem and result in recurring bouts of Candidiasis.

This is one reason why more and more people are relying on Traditional Chinese Medicine therapies that would help them cure Candida overgrowth.

A practitioner of Chinese medicine would certainly recommend lifestyle adjustments and some specific herbs that possess an antibiotic quality. This is one complementary or alternative mode of treatment that is sure to resolve any imbalances in the body.

The lifestyle adjustment and the herbs suggested by traditional Chinese Medicine practitioners restore balance by decreasing the amount of harmful bacteria that can spur Candida overgrowth, and still allow the beneficial bacteria to remain and even thrive.

The beneficial bacteria within the body are very important for health and among other things helps inhibit yeast infections such as Candida.

When a practitioner of Chinese medicine provides you with treatment of your Candidiasis, he/she will ensure that your body is brought back into balance since it is often the practitioner’s view that an imbalance of your Yin and Yang is usually the reason for most of the illnesses you suffer from.

In the treatment of Candidiasis, one specific way Chinese Medicine addresses the issue is to recommend a cleansing treatment that helps eliminate toxins, phlegm, and waste in the body that the practitioner has identified during diagnosis. These three factors are the biggest contributors for a Candidiasis infection.

The herbs used in the Chinese medicine treatment of candidiasis are meant to help promote the elimination of toxins and phlegm and are not designed to purge the large intestine. According to Chinese medicine, to halt the overgrowth of yeast in the body, it is important that the toxins, waste, and phlegm are taken out of the body.

To assist with the removal of toxins, waster, and phlegm in the body, Chinese medicine practitioners may use the following herbs: Phellodendron (wangbai), Coptis (lung lian), Skullcap (wang chin), Saussarea (mu hsiang), Cardamom (bai di kou), Agastachis (huo hsiang), Melia (chuan lian hsi), and Gentiana (long dao cao)).

The patient will then proceed to the next phase, which is the tonifying phase once the cleansing phase has been consummated. In the tonifying phase, the damage caused by Candidiasis is repaired leading to the restoration of balance in the body.

This phase of the treatment is also the time when the practitioner strives to avert the recurrence of the disease in the future. Herbal treatment during this phase will usually involve the use of Dioscorea (shan yao), Atractylodes (bai shu), codonopsis (dang shen), and astralagus (wang chi).

The treatment plan will also involve an instruction on how to lessen the likelihood of yeast overgrowth through diet modifications by lessening the consumption of foods that encourage yeast growth.

Cancer Patients May Gain Significant Benefits From Massage Therapy

Massage therapy or physiotherapy involves the kneading and rubbing of the muscle tissue’s superficial layers to stimulate alleviate tension and enhance circulation.

Aromatherapy massage, deep tissue massage, shiatsu massage, and Swedish massage are some of the most popular types of massage therapy around.

Massage Therapy Used in Cancer Treatment

There are doctors who recommend massage therapy as an adjunct to cancer therapy. While espoused as a way to help relieve pain related to cancer, massage therapy is also deemed helpful in reducing anxiety and stress associated with cancer.

Most of the time, massage is performed by licensed massage therapists, but sometimes, in certain situations, certain massage techniques can be administered by trained caregivers.

The Benefits Cancer Patients Can Receive From Massage Therapy

There is no proof that massage therapy can halt the spread or growth of cancer. Be that as it may, research has shown that this therapy may provide other benefits for people struggling with cancer:

1. Relief of Anxiety – A review of ten studies on aromatherapy massage in 2004 showed that aromatherapy massage can help reduce anxiety and boost psychological wellbeing in people suffering from cancer.

2. Improved Quality of Life – In a 2009 study, participants who were undergoing breast cancer therapy experienced improvements in functioning and quality of life after being administered with 30-minute massage once a week for three weeks straight. It also seemed that massage therapy helped them sleep better.

3. Reduction of Pain – In a study done 2002, 41 people being treated with radiation therapy or chemotherapy experienced a reduction of their pain as well as improved quality of sleep and less anxiety after being given massage therapy.

4. Stronger Immune System – In a 2004 study, it was seen that massage helped increase the number of lymphocytes (white blood cells that fight disease and infection in the body) and natural killer cells in women suffering from breast cancer. These women also experienced less hostility, depression, and anxiety after being treated with 30 minutes massages thrice a week for five weeks. The massages also help raise the serotonin and dopamine levels in their bodies. Serotonin and dopamine are two mood-stabilizing brain chemicals.

Massage Precautions for Cancer Sufferers

Before undergoing massage therapy, it’s important for people with cancer to talk to their doctors first. Here are some of the precautions to keep in mind:

1. Cancer patients receiving radiation therapy may be prone to light touch and massage oils can trigger allergic reactions.

2. For cancer patients who have undergone radiation therapy, a massage procedure may be uncomfortable.

3. Cancer patient being treated chemotherapy may be more susceptible to bruising.

4. Improper massage of bone in a body part of cancer metastasis could result in a fracture.

5. Theoretically speaking, the risk of cancer cells metastasizing to other body parts can increase when an area of a tumor is massaged. For cancer patients, it may be wise to avoid being massaged near cancerous areas or tumors.

Shiatsu, A Time-Honored Tradition Of Restoring Balance And Harmony In The Body

Ancient Chinese healers have found that using light finger pressure on their sick patients would make them get better. Through this technique, they were able to raise the energy levels of their patients and treated digestive conditions. They recorded their works in medical texts. Over time, those healers found that the human body has energy within itself that moves through certain channels, and to each organ was a corresponding meridian associated with it. These energy channels are called Meridians.

Thousands of years ago, there was a Buddhist monk who introduced Chinese Medicine to Japanese healers. The healers adopted this technique and developed it to an acupressure massage known as ‘Shiatsu’. This is an extremely relaxing form of physiotherapy that applies gentle pressure using the therapist’s thumb. The pressure travels up a meridian channel and down another meridian channel in a proper and smooth movement for each of the twelve meridians. During a Shiatsu massage, the client is clothed in loose clothing and lies on the floor on a comfortable mat.

Shiatsu and acupressure works straight through our energy system via the musculoskeletal and nervous systems of our body. These two techniques have a profound effect on our overall health and well being. Shiatsu restores harmony and balance to our energetic system allowing all the systems in our body to become relaxed and calm. Relaxation causes the nervous system to transmit signals that slow down the excess release of the hormone cortisol.

It is worth mentioning that Cortisol is a stress hormone. The level of cortisol released in our bloodstream can have a significant effect on our digestion, sex drive, immune system, and all other non essential body functions. If these functions are inhibited or slowed down, it will trigger the production and release of adrenalin, another stress hormone. Adrenalin is the hormone that provides us with a surge of energy and the extra strength to undergo a ‘fight or flight’ survival mode. Adrenaline helps us to overcome a certain life threatening crisis. We then collapse into a weakened state of fatigue when the crisis is over.

In Chinese medicine, our energetic system is sometimes referred to as our emotional being or ‘Ki’, ‘Chi’, Spirit, or ‘Soul’. This system is made up of the spiritual, emotional, mental, and physical aspects that make up a human being. Essentially, our energetic system is who we really are.

Disharmony and dis-ease are manifestations of underlying imbalances within our energetic system. Various factors like stress, illness, unhealthy diet, hunger, crime, poor self-esteem, insecurity, overwork, fatigue, and financial worry can disrupt the healthy flow of life-giving energy. Life stresses can lead to the development of blockages in our energetic system, specifically in the meridians.

Western medicine addresses symptoms with heart medicine, arthritis drugs, heartburn medications, pain pills, muscle relaxants, antidepressants, surgery and other palliative methods.

But in traditional Chinese Medicine and other forms of Eastern medicine, the source of the disharmony and dis-ease can be addressed with acupressure or Shiatsu, rest, and nutritional food. These are all designed to address energy obstructions along the meridians that hinder essential chemical reactions and life-giving flow of blood and energy.

Shiatsu has other benefits that include the normalization of nerve function through the autonomic and central nervous systems, promotion of joint flexibility, strengthening of the immune system, and boosting energy and blood circulation throughout the body through the meridians and blood vessels. The chemical reactions brought about by Shiatsu improve organ and muscle function creating ‘ease’ in our system.

The Risks And Benefits Of Acupuncture And Chinese Herbal Medicine

Continuing to gain popularity among the American public acupuncture and TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine) is the treatment of choice for diseases in which mainstream medical treatments have had little success curing. Treatments related to Traditional Chinese medicine are founded on the mystical notion that chi, a cosmic energy, moves throughout the human body and when the movement is obstructed the result is illness and pain.

Acupuncture and traditional Chinese medicine (mainly herbs) reintroduces the normal chi flow of the body that leads to the curing of sickness by enabling the body to self-heal. Acupuncture strives to restore normal chi flow via the insertion of needles on the outside of the ear, into specific points on the skin or both. Even though acupuncture and TCM are traditionally thought of as very safe, with none of the side effects of drugs and surgery, a few medical experts have recently objected to the long held idea that both procedures are risk free.

When talking about risks, acupuncture indeed has a few associated risks. They include:

• Skin diseases
• Nerve damage
• Unclean needles resulting in infection (hepatitis B)
• Localized bleeding
• Hematoma
• Punctured lung
• Fainting
• Convulsions

However, as with any other treatment modality, acupuncture is practically free of risk if it’s administered by a licensed qualified practitioner/doctor.

Chinese medicine and acupuncture follow standards that have not been approved fully by the FDA. Of course, many are aware that the FDA has shown a bias against natural modes of therapy and so this fact should come as no surprise. Here in the US, acupuncture needles should only be used once and then disposed of. Unfortunately, a lot of “traditional” doctors think that the process of certification for a licensed or certified acupuncturist has now become a farce and that the entire profession is more interested in making money by exploiting the desperation of people in whom standard accepted medical procedures did not work.

Because of this, acupuncture has been declared an unproven mode of therapy whose approach to healing is unproven and backward by the National Council against Health Fraud. They added that the identified health benefits are nothing more than due to the patient’s own expectations and because of the placebo effect.

Unlike acupuncture, Chinese herbal medicine, on the other hand, has been surprisingly heaped with praises by a number of researchers. According to some studies, herbal therapies very seldom bring up any adverse effects. They actually are obviously a whole lot safer than most of the pharmaceutical medications sold in the market today. Traditional and modern herbal remedies are now sold commercially for people of any age and physical condition.

These Chinese herbal remedies are now being utilized to address a wide variety of health problems. They include gynecological, digestive, immunity, and psychological problems; pain; alcoholism; smoking; addictive disorders; respiratory conditions; childhood illnesses; and allergic conditions.

Acupressure Weight Loss Treatment

For those struggling to lose weight, you may be desperate to find a method that really works. A lot of diet programs are ineffective and some are mere fad diets that stuck around just a little longer more than they should. Leave those useless diet programs behind for there is a truly effective way to lose weight. It is called acupressure weight loss treatments which are becoming increasingly popular due to the fact that it simply works.

What is acupressure weight loss treatment?

Acupressure is an ancient Chinese treatment that works the same way as acupuncture. The only difference is that acupuncture uses needles while acupressure uses mostly the hands, which make it more preferable for a lot of people. Pressure is applied on parts of the body that are associated with water retention and areas related to weight gain, like the intestines and stomach.

Coupled with exercise and proper dietary habits, the regular practice of acupressure can help you lose weight rapidly. In between your healthy lifestyle practices such as staying active and eating right, it’s important to perform sessions of acupressure to lose weight. You’ll be able to see results within day if you have a healthy combination of these things, more so if your body responds well to acupressure therapy.

It need not be so difficult to lose weight. You might even enjoy losing weight faster with acupressure treatment. You can go online and search for resources and books that can help get started on this very safe, effective, and very easy way to lose those unwanted pounds.

The Different TCM Patterns That Give Rise To Insomnia

Insomnia is lack of sleep and can be any of these sleeping issues: incapacity or trouble falling asleep, restless sleep, waking throughout the night, dream-disrupted sleep, restless sleep, and waking in the wee hours of morning and being unable to go back to sleep. If it recurs for at least two months, insomnia is deemed chronic. Throughout their lives, about a third of adults suffer from some sort of recurring or occasional sleep disturbance.

People with good health get good sleep. The body is in a state of imbalance if sleep is poor. Besides affecting your mood and energy level, frequent disturbed sleep also impacts your health as sleep helps reinforce the immune system. Sleep is as precious to your health as exercise and diet. Insomnia impacts both your body and mind and if you suffer from chronic insomnia, you are more at risk of developing anxiety disorders or depression more than others. Mental faculties related to decision-making and problem solving are both affected by lack of sleep. It may take longer to recuperate from illnesses and chronic diseases may increase if you suffer from chronic sleep deprivation.

According to TCM or traditional Chinese medicine, insomnia is not a disease but a symptom. It classifies insomnia into two types: “transitory insomnia” and “true insomnia”. Transitory insomnia is usually brought about by temporary or external changes like a recent emotional distress, eating very late at night, stimulants such as coffee, changes in the weather, and outside noise. True insomnia is typically caused by a weak constitution due to prolonged illness, too much sexual activity, poor diet, and extended emotional stress and upset.

Sleep disruptions caused by itching, pain, or breathing problems such as asthma are not considered true insomnia. To enable a good night’s sleep, these conditions need to be treated.

In TCM, insomnia is related to shen (mind/spirit) being perturbed. Shen is a type of chi (vital energy) and is the most unstable, least significant, and “lightest” type of chi. Shen prefigures in the higher mental faculties and relates to consciousness’ spiritual aspects and the intellect. Because Shen is subtle and light, it therefore needs to be anchored by the blood and jing (the yin aspect of chi) lest it “floats away”. At night, the shen is housed by the heart during sleep and needs to be calm. If it is disturbed, insomnia and disrupted sleep will be experienced.

A unique interdependent connection exists between the shen and the Heart. The shen resides in the heart, which is especially true when you are asleep. Sleep, according to Chinese medicine, is yang going inward and enveloped by yin. Hence, insomnia is a defect in the shift of yang going into yin.

A qualified therapist/practitioner determines the patient’s TCM pattern via TCM diagnosis based on TCM medical theory. The therapist/practitioner performs an exhaustive diagnosis that can help identify the underlying root of the insomnia and address it appropriately. From time to time and to a certain extent, the patterns can overlap and other associated symptoms can also manifest. The exhibited patterns can be resolved using herbal or acupuncture treatment that, more often than not are utilized simultaneously. The following is a broad outline of the most common TCM patterns related to insomnia.

Deficient Spleen & Heart Blood

The spleen can be injured by eating raw/cold food; too much cold combined with irregular diet; worry, mental and physical exhaustion; and overwork. Blood is produced in the spleen and blood also furnishes nutrients to the heart. A weak spleen typically causes blood deficiency. This issue can also be brought on by a protracted illness or difficult pregnancy or difficult labor that saps the body of blood and energy. Insomnia of this form is marked by dream-disturbed sleep and problems falling asleep (particularly inability to turn off the mind). A spleen and heart blood deficient person can also manifest signs of a pale complexion, loss of appetite, and listlessness.

The aim of TCM treatment is to calm the shen and increase blood production by nourishing and strengthening the spleen and heart.

Phlegm Heat and Disharmony in the Abdomen

Food stagnation can be caused by poor eating habits (eating too fast, eating while angry or sad, eating very late at night) and food overindulgence/gluttony. Phlegm and dampness may arise due to too much consumption of foods that tend to create phlegm (alcohol and spicy, sweet, greasy, rich foods) or a weak spleen. Stomach blockage due to food (weak digestion) leads to phlegm heat that bothers the shen.

This pattern leads to symptoms like insomnia with possible acid reflux, abdominal fullness and distention, and bloating as well as waking in the early hours with problem going back to sleep and excessive dreaming.

People with this specific pattern can also struggle with discomfort/fullness of the abdomen and chest, heaviness in the head, dizziness, excess phlegm, and belching.

The plan of treatment in TCM is to calm shen, transform phlegm, dispel heat, balance abdomen, and alleviate food stagnation.

Deficient Gallbladder & Heart Chi

This pattern is typically the result of intense shock or shock within the womb. People suffering from this pattern often worry and are anxious. They also are very timid, are frightened easily and may have difficulty dealing with new situations coping with changes in their routine.

Insomnia of this form is caused by periodic bad dreams that cause frequent waking, often characterized as “waking with a start”. People with this type of insomnia are very often easily frightened.

TCm treatment aims to calm the mind and shen and relieve fearfulness by beefing up the chi.

Heat with Deficient Yin

Aging, lack of rest, too much sex, and overwork can exhaust the yin of the Kidney. If the Kidney yin is unable to balance Heart Fire, it can burn without control. Over time, the yin will literally be burned away from too much fire. A deficient yin and blood cannot adequately anchor the shen resulting in insomnia.

This form of insomnia is usually marked by night sweats and constant waking throughout the night due to feelings of heat. Heat with Deficient Yin insomnia is usually chronic. Symptoms related to this pattern include warm feet and hands, dry mouth, vertigo, dizziness, and irritability.

TCM plan of treatment is to calm the shen, dispel heat, and nourish the yin of the kidney, liver, and heart.

Stagnation of Liver Chi Causing Fire or Heat

Chi can stagnate due to factors like repressed emotions, emotional turbulence, resentment, anger, and frustration. Stagnated chi can lead to weak blood circulation which may result in inadequate supply of blood to the heart. This heart is then poorly nourished making it less able to house the shen.

Chi stagnation, over time, can produce heat that disturbs the shen and the heart. The heat makes it very difficult for shen to calm down.

Usual insomnia symptoms caused by this pattern are: insomnia exacerbated by stress, problems going to sleep, and waking time and time again from around two to four in the morning.

Additional symptoms may include: probable anxiety coupled with palpitations, sleep bruxism at night, neck and shoulder tension, headaches, moodiness, restlessness, irritability, and depression.

TCM plan of treatment focuses on calming the shen, eliminating heat, and relaxing liver chi.

TCM treatment often works well against insomnia. It may take weeks or months to wean off sleeping drugs if the person being treated is currently taking them.

In Toronto’s Centre for Addiction and Mental Health, researchers have recently conducted studies on people with problems sleeping. The people treated with a course of acupuncture therapies experienced relief of anxiety and their sleeping times extended by 1.4 hours, on average. Tests also showed a major rise in their body’s production of melatonin. This led the researchers to conclude acupuncture a valid form of treatment for people suffering from anxiety and insomnia and should be considered an option to pharmaceutical approaches.

In the treatment of insomnia adjunctive therapy can be extremely helpful. Meditation and/or relaxation practices are often indispensible in the calming of the mind. These practices produce effects that are cumulative and when a person attempts to go to sleep, the longer he/she works on easing the mind the easier it will be for him/her to go into a state of relaxation.

It is often necessary to make certain positive lifestyle changes especially if your insomnia is caused by severe stress associated with emotional, family, or work problems. The calming and soothing effect of acupuncture treatment coupled with relaxation practices can help address the effects of longstanding emotional turbulence and stress. Dietary modifications need to be done if certain dietary factors aid in the rise of insomnia and the need to avoid late night eating is also highly advised.

In curing insomnia the following good practices before bedtime are recommended:

• During the day, stay active and exercise. Each day, at least allocate twenty to thirty minutes of vigorous exercise, if possible, five to six hours (at least) before bedtime. Exercising can over stimulate your body if you do it very close to bedtime.

• When you have problem sleeping avoid “trying very hard” to fall asleep. The harder you try, the more awake you’ll become. A good way to fall asleep is to do an activity that is relaxing and quiet until you feel drowsy. You may then go to bed.

• It important to not be stimulated before going to bed. You can be over stimulated by watching TV or taking drugs, alcohol, or caffeine. You may find it difficult to fall asleep when you take nicotine or caffeine after lunchtime. While it may make you drowsy at first, alcohol can lead to frequent waking throughout the night and restless sleep. According to TCM, coffee and alcohol are extremely heating. The quality of your sleep can be negatively affected when you have internal heat that disturbs the liver and the heart.

• Keep a constant wake time and bedtime schedule.

• Take a light snack if you’re kept awake by hunger. Just right before bedtime, do not eat heavy meals.

• Relax. Listening to calming soft music or taking a warm bath can help promote sleep. You can also get a massage to help you relax. Meditation, yoga, qigong, or tai chi can be a very good way to calm both the body and mind.

You don’t need to suffer from the effects of insomnia as you can avail yourself of very safe and effective TCM treatments anytime.

Five Traditional Chinese Medicine Treatments For Gout

To resolve a wide range of diseases such as gout TCM or Traditional Chinese Medicine encompasses acupuncture, Chinese herbal medicine, and other lesser-known healing practices. Over 2,500 years old, Chinese medicine is a globally respected alternative and complementary medical system to standard allopathic Western medicine. When comparing the effectiveness of Chinese herbs to Western therapies for gout, Simon Becker TCM practitioner and acupuncturist cited a clinical study done in China that compared the potency of Chinese herbs to Western therapies for gout. In the study, the control group was treated with conventional Western medical care while the other group was given Chinese herbal medicine. The results of the study showed that the group treated with herbal therapy was slightly much better than the control group that received conventional Western therapies. The only known difference between the two groups was that the treatment group did not suffer from any side effects while the control group treated with Western medicine did. When used under the guidance a knowledgeable alternative health care practitioner, Chinese herbs, from Becker’s viewpoint, are without the risk of harmful side effects.

Ermiao wan

The Journal of Ethnopharmacology printed a 1994 study that showed how Ermiao wan, a Chinese herb, decreases edema and swelling. In China, this herb is used to treat people with high levels of uric acid and gout. This herb should only be used by and under the guidance of a qualified Oriental medicine practitioner.

Burdock root

Burdock root decreases swelling and inflammation in the tissues. It is considered a natural diuretic and is prescribed by practitioners to treat edema and swollen tissues surrounding the joints. Use the root as a cataplasm to be topically applied on the problem spots or can be brewed into tea and drank. Burdock root can also be eaten raw or cooked like parsnips or carrots. Urban Herbs report that when the root is used topically, some people have complained of negative reactions. In some instances, it can cause contact dermatitis or a rash.


In both Western and Chinese herbal medicine, this herb is also known to alleviate gout pain. Dandelion is used by herbalists because it has anti-inflammatory and diuretic qualities. It can be used as an herbal cataplasm for topical application or brewed into tea and drank to treat gout. It can alleviate edema and swelling around the joints. Dandelion enhances the elimination of uric acid, the cause of gout.

Blood-letting cupping

This is a form of Chinese medicine that is not much used in the West. In 2010, the Journal of Traditional Chinese Medicine reported the cupping or blood-letting is used in China once again to treat gout. In a clinical study involving 34 patients with acute gout, researchers observed that Chinese herbal medicines combined with blood-letting improved the condition of 21 of the 34 patients which is deemed a satisfactory result for gouty arthritis. Never treat gout yourself with cupping. Talk to a licensed or trained practitioner.

Meadow saffron

Meadow saffron contains colchicoside and colchicines, alkaloids that possess both diuretic and painkilling properties that can help treat water retention, edema, inflammation, and gout pain surrounding the affected joints. Standard pharmaceutical medications for gout treatment often contain colchicine. Patients who are required to take colchicine (which is relatively toxic) in any form should properly supervised by an experienced health practitioner.

Three TCM Herbal Plants That Can Restore Youthfulness To Your Face

For thousands of years and up to today, TCM or traditional Chinese medicine has been and is being practiced by practitioners and by people in the Western medical profession. It is not only effective in addressing dozens of ailments of the body it can also be used to maintain a person’s beauty and youthfulness.

The approach of TCM into providing you with a brighter, smoother, and more youthful-looking face is starkly different from the philosophy followed by Western conventional medicine. Signs of aging on the face are addressed by Western medicine through surgical treatments such as blepharoplasty and face lifts, laser resurfacing, and non-surgical methods such as the application of beauty products. All these procedures have one thing in common – they only target the wrinkles and other imperfections on your face.

On the other hand, TCM follows the belief that the spirit, mind, and body are integrated and correspondingly, outer beauty is an indication of internal balance within the body. In other words, the imperfections in your face have an underlying cause which is an imbalance in the body. TCM taps into the self healing processes of your body and empowers it to bring back balance and consequently, radiance and smoothness to your face.

In the rejuvenation of your face, one of TCM’s modes of treatment is through the use of herbs. There are literally hundreds of herbs that have shown to have a positive effect on the preservation of youth.

One herb that is widely used because of its many benefits to health is the root of astragalus which in Chinese is called huang qi. Astralagus is commonly used to help boost the immune system. It is also used to increase the body’s Yang qi that can lead to firm facial muscles and the elimination of wrinkles. Yin and Yang is often depicted in a circle sign that has black on one side and white on the other, that’s segregated by a flowing line dividing the black and white colors. In Chinese philosophy, Yin and Yang is a concept used to explain the structure of all phenomena in the universe. According to yin yang philosophy, everything in the physical universe has two polar opposites, when there is black, female, and night, there is also white, male, and day respectively, and so on and so forth.

The astralagus herb used in TCM has chemicals that contain polysaccharides and saponins. It is a plant replete with antioxidants that can help soften your skin.

The astralagus seed is another beneficial herb used in TCM herbal therapy. Its Chinese name is sha yuan ji li. It is obviously the seed of the astralagus plant whose root we talked about just a while ago. It’s believed that during the Tang dynasty, there was an emperor who was forced to flee the capital because of a political upheaval. He fled to a village wherein there were a lot of ladies that looked youthful. Fascinated, he questioned the locals about the beauty secret of these ladies. He was told that the ladies regularly drank a tea made from the sha yuan ji li. He had a daughter who had dry skin and when the emperor came back to the capital after the turmoil ended, he told the princess to drink the tea regularly. She followed her father’s advice and three years later, her dry skin became supple and smooth.

The astragalus seed, like the astragalus root, is a plant herb that boosts Yang qi. It is also known to nourish one’s kidney essence and liver blood which nourishes the face. With regards to its chemical attributes, the astralagus seed has similar antioxidant ingredients as the root of astragalus.

The dang gui or Chinese angelica root is the last herb this article will discuss. The dang gui is known to invigorate the flow of blood in the body that results in speedier nutrient replenishment on your face. It is high in the antioxidants carotene and ferulic acid and in vitamins B-12 & E.

Before using these herbs on a regular basis to attain that radiant youthful, and supple look you so desire, talk to your local TCM practitioner first and ask him or her if the herbs are right for you. If the practitioner answers yes, then take these herbs regularly, and see how many beauty benefits you can attain for years to come.