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Tag: Chinese Medicine

August 6, 2019

Stay Cool and Beat the Heat with the Benefits of Watermelon

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In Chinese Medicine, watermelon is used medicinally to help cool and clear summer heat.

Now that we’re in the height of summer, many of us are looking for ways to stay cool and beat the heat. One classic summer food that can help us do just that is watermelon. Everyone knows how sweet and refreshing a juicy slice of watermelon on a hot day can be, it’s a summertime ritual for many of us.

In Chinese Medicine, watermelon is used medicinally to help cool and clear summer heat. It nourishes fluids and helps promote urination, making it an excellent medicine for clearing heat from the body. It also has a sweet calming nature for the spirit.

Here’s a cooling summer recipe for a Watermelon Salad:

1 small watermelon, sliced into cubes and seeds removed
½-1 cup jicama, sliced
1 tablespoon chopped cilantro

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July 23, 2019

Back Shu Points: How a Needle in My Back Helped My IBS

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Instead of choosing points on my abdomen or along the intestinal channels, Dr. W selected ones parallel to my spine called the back-shu (shu) points. After the successful treatment, I found my Western

“Please lie face down,” Dr. W instructed before exiting the room. The big wooden door swung shut, and I scrambled up to the treatment table feeling a twinge of excitement, as I scurried to shed my sweater. My first face down treatment, I thought, the white table paper crinkling beneath me in anticipation. I’d sought out Dr. W primarily for his orthopedic expertise, but as I filled out the intake form that evening, a nagging pain in my lower abdomen compelled me to include a brief saga of some persistent digestive issues I’d experienced since childhood. To my surprise, not once during the back and forth of our consult was I questioned about my intestinal woes. As I lay there waiting for him to return, …

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July 9, 2019

Hydration

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We all think hydration is simple, right? Just drink plenty of water. But staying well hydrated also means our bodies need to actually ABSORB all the water we’re drinking.

We all think hydration is simple, right? Just drink plenty of water. But staying well hydrated also means our bodies need to actually ABSORB all the water we’re drinking. Imagine a dry, cracked piece of earth in the desert. When it rains, that earth is so parched and hard that it cannot absorb any water. It all runs off the surface.

Our bodies are the same. If we don’t “prepare our soil” properly, all the water we drink just runs right through, and our tissues are still parched and dry. In TCM, we use yin tonics- herbs that are moistening and demulcent, in order to help moisten the body on a deep level and help it to “hold” the water. On a cellular level, yin tonics …

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October 5, 2018

Eight things I learned about Qigong: Continued from August 13th blog post*

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*See August 13th blog post I practiced Qigong for two months. Here are eight things I learned. for the four previous things I learned about this practice.

5. Prepare to let go
2017 was a tough one. It marked the end of a relationship, the second year of a move and finally admitting to myself that I wasn’t happy working behind a desk. Then, during the last few months of the year, a blow of chronic illness quite literally brought me to my knees. For a couple long months I cobbled together all that I could to get through each day, and at night, I fell apart again and again and again. Cutting my losses, I filed for disability, packed my bags and booked a plane …

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August 13, 2018

I practiced Qigong for two months. Here are eight things I learned.

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My introduction to Qigong

My practice began in the classroom where we were asked to establish a daily practice and jot down our reactions in a journal. Initially, I had no intention to share these written reflections, but the idea of incorporating these into this blog post popped into my head about midway through the assignment. At first, I wondered if I’d made a mistake. As you’ll read shortly, I found it tough to simultaneously cultivate a meditation practice and blog about it. But the truth is, Qigong surprised me in more ways than one and I’m excited to share what I discovered.

A brief disclaimer: The perils of writing for public review

In the beginning, I’d find myself midway through a sequence trying to relax, while at …

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August 7, 2018

The Delightful Importance of a Chinese Herb Garden

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Purple Perilla (Shiso) Leaf (Zi Su Ye or Zi Su Zi), in the AIMC Student Garden

As acupuncturists and herbalists in training, the students of AIMC learn hundreds of herbs, sometimes up to 20 new herbs per week. This is a huge task for anyone! And though we often have the opportunity to touch and smell the dried herbs in our classes, it is so much more fresh and immediate to witness their growth. It is wonderful that while located in a dense urban environment, AIMC has a small Chinese herb garden right outside our door.

Some may wonder, what is the purpose of growing Chinese herbs outside of Asia?

This medicine after all, was developed over 1,000’s of years in China and surrounding countries. …

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June 22, 2018

What is Qi?

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Qi is fundamental to Chinese Medicine. It moves with the blood through the meridian channels, and its flow can be influenced by stimulating various acupuncture points. Qi can flow smoothly or it can become deficient, stagnant or even rebellious. If you’ve ever felt under the weather in any way shape or form, chances are your qi fell into one of said pathological states. But what exactly is qi? And more importantly, how does it manifest in our everyday lives?

When acupuncture school first piqued my interest, I pretty quickly realized how little I knew about qi. Sure, I’d heard qi tossed around before; someone emerging from a yoga class, glowing, raving about the qi of the instructor. But if you’d asked me to define it, I …

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Medicine College, Berkely

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