You probably notice that I am using a lot more moxa than usual in treatments lately. This is by design since for the next 5wks we are entering a very important time of the year.
To prevent disease in winter, treat in summer
This famous saying in Chinese Medicine means, for diseases which recur every winter, one may attempt to treat them in the summer. To fully understand this concept it is important to think about the nature of summer which is fire and yang while winter is cold and yin. Moxa which is a yang therapy is used to increase the reserves of yang in preparation for the winter months and as a result help prevent illnesses of the winter such as cold and flu.
So how does moxa do this? Scientific research on the actions of moxa show that it strengthens immune function by the release of compounds called histotoxin which increases Helper T cells, natural killer cells, as well as cytokines (INF-v, IL-2mRNA) in the lymph nodes. There is a great deal of research on moxa’s effects as an adjunct to cancer therapy, immune modulation, and increasing the body’s response to stress. Famous Japanese Doctor, Shimetaro Hara who lived to be 109yrs old and practiced medicine until he was 104 attributed his longevity to regular use of moxa.
Regular acupuncture and moxa treatments during the summer and autumn can keep you healthy and energetic during the winter.
Schedule your appointment now!
News You Can Use
This May Be How Acupuncture Tamps Down Stress
Beat stress with acupuncture! Read more
Antioxidant Superstars: Vegetables and Beans
Beans and a host of vegetables top the list of antioxidant-rich foods Read more
The Healthiest Way To Breathe
In my practice I have found proper breathing along with acupuncture to be essential in alleviating anxiety Read more
Controlling arthritis pain with an ancient treatment
"It’s been around for thousands of years and has been used to treat a variety of disorders. Now, a Chinese study has found that the ancient practice of moxibustion is an effective way to control arthritis pain in the knee." Read more
How Walking in Nature Changes the Brain
"A walk in the park may soothe the mind and, in the process, change the workings of our brains in ways that improve our mental health, according to an interesting new study of the physical effects on the brain of visiting nature." Read more
AVON 39 The Walk to End Breast Cancer was a very busy and wonderfully fulfilling weekend of treating the walkers and crew. Working in collaboration with Stanford Healthcare, my colleague Karen Zojaji and I treated over 60 walkers and crew members. Most were trying acupuncture for the first time, so what a thrill to hear the refrain, "My pain is gone!" Migraines, hip pain, foot pain, shoulder pain, and more consistently reduced or eliminated!
This week we are returning to our regular schedule and you can make your appointment HERE.
Yours in Health,
Christian Hoffert LAc.
News You Can Use
Dynamic Duos: How To Get More Nutrition By Pairing Foods
"A small study published in May in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition concludes that adding eggs to salads makes it easier to absorb the carotenoids in the raw vegetables." Click here to read more
Scientists Find Surprising Link Between Birth Month And Disease Risk
"Data scientists at Columbia University Medical Center uncovered a surprising correlation between the month you're born and your risk of developing various health problems, including heart disease, viral infections and ADHD." Click here to read more
Why I Prescribe Acupuncture: A Cardiologist Explains
A cardiologist explains why he prescribes acupuncture for his patients. Click here to read more
Green Tea Improves Cognitive Function in Elderly Subjects
"Publishing their results in the journal Nutrients, in May 2014, researchers showed that drinking the equivalent of 2 to 4 cups of brewed green tea (or bottled tea) daily improved cognitive function or reduced the progression of cognitive dysfunction in elderly subjects." Click here to read more
The following is from my presentation for the Avon 39 route preview walk.
The following are 3 acupressure points that can not only benefit you during the walk, but also can help you relieve stress during your everyday life.
Union Valley (LI-4) LI-4 is located on the Large Intestine Meridian.
Location: On the dorsal part of the hand, stretch out your hand out forming a “tiger’s mouth” and with you other hand put your thumb up.
Join the thumb with the “tiger’s mouth” massaging the sorest point.
Benefits: Massaging this point, is beneficial for conditions of the neck, head, and upper limbs.
Inner Pass (PC-6) PC-6 is located on the Pericardium Meridian.
Location: On the inside of the arm, three fingers width from the wrist crease, massaging between the two tendons.
Benefits: Massaging this point helps open the chest, relieve nausea, upset stomach, and motion sickness.
Leg 3 Mile (ST-36) ST-36 is located on the Stomach Meridian.
Location: On the lateral side of the leg, one hand width down from the eye of the knee, and a finger width over, massaging the sorest area.
_Benefits: This point’s name reflects the idea that stimulating it can enable someone to walk great distances even when tired. Massaging this point helps relieve stress, fatigue, gastrointestinal discomfort, as well as nausea and vomiting (with PC-6).
Breathing with the belly plus stimulating these three acu points can help increase the circulation of qi and blood throughout the body and as a result help reduce stress.
Research: Moxibustion combined with acupuncture increases tight junction protein expression in Crohn’s disease patients
Click here to read more
The Right Dose of Exercise for a Longer Life
Two new studies suggest that the idea dose of exercise for a long life is a bit more than many of us currently believe we should get, but less than many or us might expect. Click here to read more
Physicians in SF are prescribing park time to patients
Many of the prescriptions San Francisco physician Dr. Daphne Miller writes for her patients cannot be filled at a pharmacy. That’s because they look something like this... Click here to read more
Brain Boost: Mediterranean Diet May Fend Off Memory Loss
Seniors who followed the Mediterranean diet for four years held steady on cognitive tests. But the test scores of people following a lower fat diet went down. Click here to read more
Veterans in Wisconsin Try Acupuncture as an Alternative to Narcotics During emotional hearings about the alleged overprescription of narcotics at the Tomah VA hospital, many who testified noted there are safer ways to treat pain.
One treatment mentioned was acupuncture. Click here to read more
Why Leading Cancer Hospitals Are Turning to Acupuncture
"MD Anderson is one of the top ranking oncology centers in the United States. Excelling in cutting edge scientific research to find cures and answers for a wide range of cancers. Yet, MD Anderson's Integrative Medicine Center looks at a treatment method 3,000 years in the making... ACUPUNCTURE" Click here to listen to the podcast
Cleveland Clinic’s New Medicine: At one Ohio hospital, patients get herbs as well as drugs
"Though herbal therapy has been practiced in China for centuries, it is still an afterthought in the U.S., in part because pharmaceutical remedies are usually easier to obtain. Now that’s beginning to change: in January, the Cleveland Clinic opened a Chinese herbal-therapy ward." Click here to read more
The Most Powerful Food Combinations
"Who came up with the idea that we are supposed to drink orange juice at breakfast? And why, if oatmeal is so good for us, do we eat that only in the morning as well? Apologies to the Palinites, but nutritionists are starting to realize that you and I like our oatmeal and OJ before we start the day because we evolved to like it that way—because enjoying the two together is healthier than eating each of them alone." Click here to read more
Anglo-Saxon remedy kills hospital superbug MRSA
"The medieval medics might have been on to something. A modern-day recreation of this remedy seems to alleviate infections caused by the bacteria that are usually responsible for styes. The work might ultimately help create drugs for hard-to-treat skin infections." Click here to read more
A couple of weeks ago I was doing an event and an elderly gentleman came up to me and said, "I do not believe in acupuncture!" Up until then, the event had been going well. "It exists," I said with a chuckle. He then asked, "What is the chance that you can hurt someone with those needles?" I responded, "Less than 1% and as a matter of fact only 86 people have died after acupuncture (mostly in China and Japan) in the last 45 years. Compare that with the large numbers of adverse events each year from Western Medicine. I ask you, which would you do?" His eyes were wide and he asked, "Could you treat my neck?" "Perhaps," I chuckled.
This incident really made it crystal clear that ordinary people off the street do not know as much about acupuncture as I thought they did, so the following are a couple of common questions I hear:
How does acupuncture work?
Answer: To tell you the truth no one really understands the mechanism behind acupuncture. However based on some of the current thinking, I look at it this way: The body is a closed circulation system and within this system there are blood circulation, nerve pathways, and the fascial matrix. So inserting thin acupuncture needles in this closed circulatory system results in the normalization of blood circulation, nerve impulses are regulated, pain modulating endorphins are released, and the fascial matrix relaxes, which as a result reduces pain and tension in the body.
What conditions are acupuncture used for?
Quick answer: Acute or chronic pain and stress.
Long Answer: Considering that it has been estimated that 75 – 90 percent of all visits to primary care physicians are for stress related problems, it is clear that acupuncture is beneficial for relieving stress as well as some of the consequences of stress such as headaches, insomnia, digestive disorders such as IBS, menstrual problems, depressed immune function, weight gain, and emotional disorders to name a few. As a matter of fact, the World Health Organization (WHO) has compiled a list of symptoms, syndromes, disease processes, pathologies, traumas and conditions that have definitely been proven as effectively treated by acupuncture.
How many acupuncture treatments will I need in order to see results?
Answer: Acupuncture is a process in which there is a beginning, middle, and an end to treatment. The number of treatments needed depends on the condition and whether it is acute or chronic. In the beginning of treatment the frequency may be 2-3 times per week and then reduced to once a week as the symptoms improve. Eventually maintenance treatments once every 3-4wks may be performed if necessary. Usually results can be seen within 6-10 treatments however chronic or complicated conditions may require many more treatments.
So do you have any questions? If so please feel free to post them here or on the comments section on our Facebook page.
One of the most common reasons people seek acupuncture is hip and low back pain.
The following 3 stretches are what I suggest to patients and they see the results very quickly. These stretches can be done by anyone regardless of age, fitness, or time requirements and most importantly, do not require equipment. About 5 minutes several times throughout the day is all that is required.
This stretches the calf (Gastocnemius and Soleus mainly) and Achilles Tendon. As a result this stretch can relieve knee pain, hamstring tightness, pain in the bottom of the foot, and pain in the sacroiliac joint.
Seated Hamstring Stretch
This stretches the hamstrings (Biceps femoris, Semitendinosus, Semimembranosus) and as a result can relax the muscles of the low back.
Seated Lower Back Stretch
This stretches the muscles of the low back as well as the mid back.
Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM)is a holistic system of medicine that is approximately 2500 years old. In TCM, an important guiding principle is “Yi bin tong zhi. Tong bing yi zhi.” This translates to “One disease, different treatments. Different diseases, one treatment.” So in TCM the treatment is based on pattern differentiation rather than disease. This makes sense since the disease is a manifestation of a patient’s unique pattern.
The treatment modalities in TCM can be grouped into three broad categories which are Acupuncture, Herbal Medicine, and Lifestyle (which includes Qi Gong, Tai ji, dietary instructions, etc.).
Acupuncture can be considered a medicine of trajectory in which channels and points are selected based on the location of the disorder. So inserting thin acupuncture needles will affect the closed circulatory system which includes blood circulation, the nerve pathways, and fascial matrix. As a result blood circulation is normalized, nerve impulses are regulated, and the fascial matrix relaxes, reducing pain and tension in the body.
Herbal Medicine affects the internal physiology and pathology of a disorder. The appropriate formula is selected based on pattern differentiation. A skilled practitioner will determine the pattern using concise questioning, pulse diagnosis, as well as looking and listening to the patient. Just giving a formula to a patient just because they have a headache is no better than giving them an aspirin. It does not take into account the patient’s unique pattern that they are presenting with and ignores the guiding principle, “One disease, different treatments. Different diseases, one treatment.”
Christian Hoffert L.Ac.
Outside the world of Chinese Medicine, Christian enjoys hiking, trail running, reading, martial arts, and cooking.
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