Greater Houston Acupuncture Alliance
 
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By Lori Earley, L.Ac
Phoenix Rising Acupuncture

"It is my wish that 2016 be a joyful and healthy year for all.  I’d like to share with you the story of my experience with Chinese Medicine and a few lessons from its ancient wisdom to help make 2016 a healthier year for you.

Ten years ago, I lived a different life. I was, in many ways, a very different person. Although superficially, I seemed to be the epitome of good health, in reality, my lifestyle was slowly killing me. After all, before I was 30 years old, I had already been diagnosed with several medical conditions, including one autoimmune disease, and I had been prescribed at least five medications to manage a myriad of symptoms associated with my conditions. My guess is that if I had maintained this lifestyle, by the time I reached my 40s, I would require 10 or more prescription drugs.

Admittedly, my life looked different then. I was in my twenties, working hard and fast as a sales consultant in the cutthroat corporate world. I pumped myself full of caffeine, ate on the go, and after a long day’s work, I drank wine, watched tons of reality TV, and vigorously plugged away in front of a computer screen creating pointless sales reports. I stayed up too late, relishing the only alone time of the day. As a deeply introverted person, this alone time is required to recharge my battery of life.

I was also deeply unhappy. My life seemed meaningless, chasing one insignificant goal after another, and although I didn’t fully realize it at the time, I understand now that my spirit was breaking. It’s no wonder this fast-paced, high-stress, tense life was slowly killing me. But it wasn’t just me. It’s many people. In fact, in our society, it’s most people.

Now, with 40 right around the corner, I take only 1 prescription, and the dose has decreased by 75%, something my doctor admitted rarely happens. Chinese Medicine changed my life, and now as a practitioner of Chinese Medicine, I have witnessed dozens of stories like my own."

The changes were not immediate, nor were they easy, but they’ve been effective and lasting. Here are 4 lessons from Chinese Medicine that can change your health.

  • Slow Down. Chinese Medicine teaches that humans are microcosms of our environment, and so as the sun rises, so should we, and as the sun sets, so should we begin to settle for the evening.
    • Healthy Hint: So, it may not be entirely possible with life’s requirements, but anyone CAN stop and breathe. Breathe in slowly and deeply during the day.
    • Also, learn to say no. Seriously. Say “NO” when there is no time or energy to exert. The body cannot run on an empty tank. When energy is exerted on an empty tank, things begin to break down. Keep your tank full.
  • Eat Well. Just as we are microcosms of our environment, we should eat according to the season. Enjoy fruits and vegetables that are in season. When it’s cold outside, eat warm food. When it’s blazing outside, indulge in watermelon and iced tea.
    • Healthy Hint: There are certain foods to avoid at all cost: fried foods, dairy, and sugar, all of which create systemic inflammation through out the body, worsening pain, allergies, heart disease, and most all health conditions. Tempting? Yes. Worth it? Likely not.
  • Protect Yourself. According to Chinese Medicine, we have what’s called Wei Qi. It’s a field of energy that surrounds us, protecting us from “foreign pathogens”. When our Wei Qi is strong, our immune system is strong, acting as a barrier to foreign invaders, like bacteria and viruses.
    • Healthy Hint: I like to use herbs to strengthen the Wei Qi. Ginseng, Curcumin, and Astragalus are my preferences.
    • My favorite thing to do at the end of the day is to indulge in a hot Epsom Salt bath. Salt cleanses the aura, and it’s a perfect way to literally wash off the drama and stress of the day. It also relaxes tight muscles. Enjoy!
  • Follow your heart. This one is my favorite. Last year, I had the honor of training with the founder of Esoteric Acupuncture, Dr. Mikio Sankey. He taught that one must quiet the mind to “discern the whisper of the heart”. After all, our minds chatter away all the time. Loudly. How can the heart be heard with such a loud (and sometimes obnoxious) mind? Esoteric acupuncture uses sacred geometry and acupuncture to balance the chakras and to help elevate a client’s consciousness.
    • Healthy Hint: Meditation is key. Ten minutes a day is all that’s needed to create a safe and quiet space. Welcome the stillness, and begin to hear the faint voice of your soul’s intention and purpose.
    • I highly recommend receiving a series of esoteric acupuncture treatments by a practitioner who has trained under Dr. Sankey. Esoteric acupuncture is an incredibly powerful healing modality that can heal on the physical, emotional, and spiritual levels.
* This article was originally published in the January 2016 edition of Indigo Sun magazine.


 


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