Practical Chinese medicine, a roadmap to maintaining health
By Kristina Rogers
Did you ever wonder how Chinese people stayed so healthy into old age? In early China there was a prescribed way to live. People took certain foods and remedies for particular seasons, and practiced energy exercises such as Qi Gong or Tai Chi. Today we see this intent in a more modern way with our popular Yoga along with these same Eastern exercises.
“Practical Chinese Medicine”
By Kristina Rogers L.Ac.
Tue, Jul 23, 4pm
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What does the traditional Chinese medicine system have to offer? If we lived our lives according to seasons we would know we are presently in summer where the heart organ is highlighted and Fire is our element. Knowing this, we would choose cooling foods such as salads, cucumbers, melons and chrysanthemum tea to balance the seasonal heat. We would also know that before the rains came, we were experiencing inner dryness and might augment our system with a traditional Chinese formula such as Six Ingredients, a classic herbal remedy, which brings more moisture into our systems.
As the cooler seasons approach we would begin eating more warming foods including meats, cooked root vegetables, and warming spices. A perfect fall tonic is a tea made from three herbs — ginger, cinnamon sticks, and astragalus roots. This builds the immune system as well as warming and toning the lung energy.
As we age, our kidney function diminishes. A moderate lifestyle plus energy exercises and regular tonics rebuild the Water energy of the kidneys. Goldenbook Teapills help night urination, low back pain, and overall vitality.
Liver time is in spring, and liver congestion, probably the most common imbalance of all, manifests as irritability, headaches, and hypertension. Avoiding coffee, hot spicy food, and excessive alcohol benefits the liver. Exercise is the liver’s best friend and keeps this Wood element happy. If stress, travel, and irregular hours are a part of your lifestyle you might consider Free and Easy Wanderer, an herbal formula that helps regulate the liver.
The spleen, whose time is late summer, before fall, loves regular hours for meals, hates cold food, and needs to not “over think” a situation. If your primary weakness is the spleen you will crave sweets, feel tired easily, and have trouble maintaining boundaries.
Diagnosis in traditional Chinese medicine includes the taking of pulses, looking at the tongue, body palpation, and inquiry about the nature of the illness. Treatment generally includes herbal medicine, dietary suggestions, and acupuncture. Acupuncture, the placement of sterile stainless steel needles in specific points, can add energy into the system to build or disperse energy if there is stagnation or excess. The acupuncture points lie along meridians or highways of energy associated with each organ. In general, acupuncture doesn’t hurt, although as the acupuncture point is accessed there can be a charged feeling, like a jolt of “chi,” the Chinese word for energy.
Traditional Chinese medicine holds a world of information that helps us stay healthy throughout the year and as we age. By being aware of our own organ weaknesses, staying in tune with seasonal changes, eating appropriately, and exercising, we can stay healthier and happier as we age.
Kristina Rogers L.Ac. has practiced acupuncture for 30 years and has been living in San Miguel for the past year. She brings a great joy for life to her classes and sessions. With a background in Energetic Medicine and Shamanic Healing, her work speaks to the heart. You can read more about her work at http://www.passionforspirit.com.
Her next class, “Easy, Practical Chinese Medicine, a Roadmap to Maintain Health,” begins Thursday, August 1, 12:30-2:30pm for three consecutive weeks. Please contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org or 415-109-5108 for further information.