AHI HEALTH TIP FOR JANUARY 2015
1) Did you know that Ume-Sho-Kuzu is the principal medicinal drink which enhances natural immunity, strengthens the blood, and prevent or relieves infectious conditions such as Ebola. This is made of umeboshi plums, natural soy sauce (shoyu), and kuzu root powder simmered in hot water as under :
1 Tbsp of Kuzu
1/2 an umeboshi plum
1/2 teaspoon of shoyu (tamari)
1 cup water
Macrobiotic views cold and flu differently than western medicine. The cold and flu are rare almost unknown. In macrobiotic perspective is to look at the larger view of life in terms of yin/yang: diet & lifestyle. The primary question to consider is “What factors weaken one’s immunity?” First you must change negative habits as stated here under which decreases immunity, before attacking a deficient symptom by attempting to boost it.
Negative factors are :
- Poor diet & lifestyle
- Lack of sleep
- Eating more a balanced whole food diets which will strengthen digestive, circulatory and nervous systems and provide mental and emotional stability as well as physical health and vitality.
- Medical tea
- Special side dish such as sautéed lotus root
Macrobiotic respiratory tonic:
Helps relieve the upper respiratory problems; dissolves excess mucus in the body and relieves sinus blockages.
- 2-inch fresh lotus root (available from Asian food markets)
- Small ginger
- Pinch of salt
Grate lotus root. Wrap the grated lotus in cheesecloth and squeeze out the juice. The grate a small amount of ginger and squeeze out 2 or 3 drops of ginger juice. Add a pinch of sea salt. Add water equal to lotus root juice and simmer the mixture gently for 2 or 3 minutes. Drink hot.
10 Tips to Prevent & Treat the Common Cold and Flu This Winter
1. Wash Your Hands
Wash your hands regularly. Avoid touching your mouth and face.
- Adequate Rest
Sleep 7-8 hours. Balance activities with the appropriate rest and recovery.
- Nourishing Foods
Eliminate sugar, processed foods, and dairy. Eat more cooked vegetables and whole grains.
- Regular Exercise & Movement
Exercise is shown to boost your immune function.
- Positive Emotions
When the body is stressed, and you have negative emotions it lowers your immunity. Doing things that you enjoy are important for mental and physical health.
- Proper hydration
Adequate fluid replenishment is important after fluid loss. The average person should have 7-8 cups of fluids per day. It is necessary to drink more fluids if there is a loss fluid through exercise, being in higher temperatures, higher altitudes, having a fever, diarrhea or vomiting, or consuming excess caffeine or alcohol.
- Regular acupuncture
Acupuncture has been proven to activate and boost the immune system, enhancing the function and production of natural killer cells, which is the first defense against organisms that make us sick. It also regulates white blood cells that fight against infections, allergic reactions, and even autoimmune disorders.
- Traditional Chinese Medicine
The common cold will go through stages, starting with the initial onset progressing to a recovery phase. Specific formulas are used at each stage of the illness. Consult with a Doctor of Traditional Chinese Medicine for further information.
- Massage therapy
Helps by reducing stress and helps proper circulation in the body and movement of the lymphatic fluids.
- Drink a cold fighting tea
A fast way to help eliminate toxins from the common cold is to sweat. Take a hot bath, drink the soup outlined below and wrap yourself in warm blankets and take a nap. Allow yourself to sweat, and wake up feeling refreshed.
Treat fever and chills due to cold or flu:
• five pieces green onion (white part with root)
• five slices of ginger root (with skin)
• 2 table spoons maple syrup
• 2 liters water
Add Ingredients to a pot, bring to a boil, and simmer for 5 minutes. Drink it like a tea.
Treating Seasonal Affective Disorder with Acupuncture:
We set our clocks back an hour a couple of weeks ago, which means we have an extra hour to work, play, and sleep! Many of us see this extra hour as a gift, but for people struggling with Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), this is just one part of a difficult shift that happens for them every year.
Seasonal affective disorder is a subtype of depression that occurs (or recurs) predictably around the same time of year; for most people, it starts in the fall when the days get shorter and people experience less light exposure. It is also referred to as "winter depression". Often it is minimized as "seasonal blues" or "holiday blues", but normal daily functioning can actually be quite difficult for those who suffer from SAD.
Chinese medicine theory tells us that we should try to live in harmony with the environment, and that the dark, cold months are a time to hibernate and prepare for the coming spring. Unfortunately, for those who suffer from SAD, there is a marked decrease in ability to function normally, so if the desire to stay inside and sleep disrupts your daily functioning, you need to seek help.
Common symptoms of SAD may include: Feelings of depression or hopelessness
A desire to sleep more
Withdrawal from social life
Lack of interest in activities that you normally enjoy
Feeling like your body is heavy, or feeling low in energy
Increased appetite, craving for high-carb / high-fat foods, and weight gain
SAD occurs more frequently women. It is not know exactly what causes or triggers SAD, but researchers think that it relates to changes in melatonin production during the darker winter months, as well as disruptions to the circadian rhythm (your body's "internal clock" that tells you when to be active and when to rest). In addition, those who already have a diagnosis of depression or bipolar disorder are more likely to experience an increase in their symptoms around this time of year. For more information about the western medical view of SAD, you can refer to Alberta Mental Health.
Chinese medicine can be very helpful in the treatment of depression and bipolar disorder, as well as SAD. I have treated a number of people for SAD symptoms with good results. Some of them chose to use only acupuncture and herbs, while other used additional treatment modalities at the same time, such as medication, light therapies and specific exercise regimens. From a Chinese medical perspective, SAD is often a sign of stagnation of the Liver's qi (energy). When Liver qi stagnates, people may feel depressed, sluggish, or overly tired. According to Chinese medicine theory, when the Liver stagnates, it causes the Spleen to become weak, resulting in unhealthy food cravings, a feeling of heaviness in the limbs, and poor concentration or memory.
This relationship between the Liver and Spleen, and the resulting health problems, can be effectively treated with acupuncture and herbs. In fact, this is one of the patterns of depression that I think responds especially well to acupuncture and herbs.
If you are feeling an increase in depression symptoms, or if you know that this is a time of year when you get depressed, please feel free to get in touch to discuss how acupuncture and herbs can help you. Let Chinese medicine and the other modalities at the Alberta Health Institute help you get off to a good start in 2015.