Acupuncture for Fibromyalgia – A Natural Alternative Treatment

What is Fibromyalgia?

fibromyalgiaQuite simply, fibromyalgia syndrome is a disease that is currently unexplainable by modern medicine though it affects over two percent of the population of the United States. Treatment for this syndrome is a complex process because so little is known about it. Doctors will prescribe a variation of medications depending on the symptoms you have (listed below) to attempt to figure out what works. Many look into using alternative medicines rather than test medications with potentially harmful side effects. Acupuncture is the number one alternative method people use because it has been found to be much more effective than any other type of treatment.

Fibromyalgia Symptoms

Fibromyalgia syndrome causes chronic pain throughout the body, as well as exhaustion, depression, insomnia, anxiety, irritable bowel syndrome, numbness of fingers, poor blood circulation which can lead to Raynaud’s phenomenon, lack of focus, restless leg syndrome, painful menstrual cycles, migraines, pain in the jaw, stiffness of joints, dry mouth, dry eyes, dry nasal passages, incontinence, and hypersensitivity to sounds or bright lights.

Fibromyalgia Diagnosis

In order for a doctor to diagnose a person with fibromyalgia, they must have a history of chronic pain in all four quadrants of the body for at least three to four months. As of now there are not any tests that can verify that one actually has this syndrome, so a diagnosis is simply a highly educated guess. The symptoms of fibromyalgia typically show after some sort of physical or mental trauma, but no one can be certain that is the main cause. It has been discovered that women have a higher chance of developing this syndrome compared to men.

From the perspective of oriental medicine, any type of pain or disease results when there is an imbalance of Qi, or life energy, somewhere in the body.  They have found that disruptions in the spleen, cardiovascular system, liver, and kidney can cause fibromyalgia syndrome to occur.

How Acupuncture Helps Treat Fibromyalgia

Acupuncture for Chronic Pain ReliefAn acupuncture session will not treat fibromyalgia as a whole. Instead it treats it by dividing up the symptoms that the patient has and treating the imbalances related to those symptoms. The diagnosis looks at their emotional state, type of pain, sleeping patterns, general health, age, and the specific symptoms they have. There is no standard acupuncture treatment for fibromyalgia.  Each treatment will be unique to each patient.

Lifestyle change is necessary when dealing with the symptoms of fibromyalgia. Implement the following tips for best results:

7 Lifestyle Changes That Help Fibromyalgia

1: Drop sugar. Stop drinking beverages filled with sugar, such as soda. Sugar increases inflammation and raises blood sugar which later crashes.  Watch out for so called “natural” beverages too that are loaded with sugar.  Refined sugar in any form is not your friend.

2: Reduce stress.  This is a tough one, as life comes with stress.  You can deal with it by taking up meditation (below), any kind of activity or exercise, a daily nap, going to the beach, listening to relaxation tapes, even seeing a therapist or hypnotist.  Prolonged stress can significantly damage the body and mind.  It could be that a radical change may be necessary such as changing jobs or the like.  Finding a way to manage stress is essential.

3: Meditate. This is a form of stress reduction.  The practice of meditation is a proven stress reducer that helps the body create a sense of calm and a continuing sense of well being. While 15 minutes is recommended, even 5 or 10 minutes can have a powerful effect on your day.

4: Eat clean. Stop eating processed and refined foods like white bread and pasta.  They raise blood sugar which increases inflammation.  Inflammation causes discomfort and pain.  Slow burning carbohydrates like oatmeal, quinoa, brown rice, beans and potatoes do not.

5: Start exercising!  While even basic movements may be painful exercise helps restore strength and endurance. Tai Chi, Qi Gong or Yoga are great for easy stretches, careful strengthening, deep breathing, along with relaxation techniques. The gentle stretching will clear tension that builds when muscles tighten and tense and improve overall circulation. Be sure to check with your doctor before starting any exercise program.

6: Protein power. Consume foods that contain protein like lean meats and fish.  Also eat vegetables, fruits, whole grains, legumes, and complex carbohydrates.

7: Sleep.  The body requires 8 hours of restorative sleep per day for optimum health.  Lack of sleep increases inflammation, cortisol, lack of energy and more.  Maintain a routine sleep schedule and make your bedroom a sanctuary from every day stress. Practicing good sleep habits will give your body an opportunity to get stronger and heal.

8: Blood flow.  Look into performing a Chinese self-massage every morning. This will stimulate your acupuncture points, which improves the flow of one’s Qi. Doing so will help your body defend against any oddities, as well as fibromyalgia.

Mayo Clinic Study – How Acupuncture Affects Fibromyalgia

The Mayo Clinic recently performed a study on if acupuncture actually does help treat fibromyalgia. They did find that acupuncture is indeed a reliable treatment for the syndrome and the symptoms that develop because of it. The patients who were diagnosed with fibromyalgia reported that acupuncture treatments helped them overcome their fatigue, depression, anxiety, as well as many other symptoms they had.

The study required two groups of people with the first group consisted of twenty-five people who were to receive acupuncture, while the second group contained twenty-five people who received mock acupuncture treatments. The group that received the real treatments reported a significant improvement in their health after one month.

Dr. David Martin, the lead doctor of this study, reported that this study had proven acupuncture to be a helpful treatment as well as proved that studies on acupuncture can be efficiently performed. There has been an increase in the amount of scientific studies on the efficacy of acupuncture.  It was also reported that the study only used those who had severe conditions, which made the entire process more controlled. Dr. Martin suggests that more doctors should perform more studies on how acupuncture affects those with fibromyalgia.

 

Acupuncture in Cancer Treatment – A Natural Healing Adjunct

Acupuncture and Cancer

Just to be clear in no uncertain terms: Acupuncture and other natural healing methods are no substitute for modern medical cancer treatment.  No patient in their right mind should eschew western medical treatment for this devastating and fatal disease.  Acupuncture and Traditional Oriental Medicine do have a role in the healing process as an adjunct to surgery and chemotherapy to quell side effects and stimulate healing and proper cellular function.

fu** cancerThe treatment of cancer has developed quite a bit over the years, though these treatments call for strong medications and methods with a large amount of negative side affects. Cancer treatment procedures have also been known to weaken the immune system as well.  Acupuncture has no negative side effects and has grown in popularity exponentially over the last 10 years in the US.  Not only does it reduce pain, help eliminate or reduce side affects caused by cancer treatments, and speed up the recovery process, but it also improves energy, mood and general wellness.

Acupuncture is usually used as a last resort, but people are starting to see that it should have been their first adjunct treatment along with western medical cancer treatment protocols.  Acupuncture has been used to negate the side affects from treatments from surgery, radiation therapy, chemotherapy, and biological therapy.

The scientific reason to how acupuncture helps is that it causes a response in the pituitary gland that promotes the production of proteins, chemicals, and hormones that manage bodily function and immune health. It also helps hormones like endorphins to aid in reducing pain. Blood pressure and body temperatures are balanced during this process as well.

A few of the main symptoms that are caused by cancer treatments, but can be treated with acupuncture are hot flashes, pain management, vomiting, nausea, stress, night sweats, fatigue, dry mouth, and anxiety. Many tests have been done proving that acupuncture greatly reduced vomiting and nausea caused by surgery, morning sickness, and chemotherapy. Cancer treatments can also cause a deep cough, chest congestion, depression, high fever, weight loss, speech troubles, night sweats, and fluid in the legs or arms which can be alleviated by acupuncture. People who have been treated with acupuncture also had a large reduction in pain, enough to reduce or eliminate the need for prescription pain medication.  With the previous reasons, an increased white blood cell count, general wellness, and a better immune system, there is no reason not to pursue acupuncture as an additional treatment.

What is Acupuncture and How Does it Work?

acupuncture treatmentAcupuncture is a technique within Traditional Oriental Medicine that has been dated back to ancient times, originating in China. It is said that life energy, also known as Qi, is constantly flowing through your body. When the flow of this energy is disrupted or blocked, then a problem could occur such as discomfort or illness. Acupuncturists use small, sterile needles to manage this flow. There are many acu-points on the human body that allow them to do so. A disrupted flow of Qi can be balanced to help rid or reduce any diseases or illnesses in the body. Flow of Qi can also be re-balanced and improved in order to increase the physical and mental health.

Natural herbal therapies, where allowed by the patient’s physician, can also help extend the effectiveness of the acupuncture treatments and promote wellness and balance within the patient’s body.

cancer fighting vegetablesCancer Fighting Vegetables

• Arugula
• Beet greens
• Bok choy
• Broccoli
• Brussels sprouts
• Cabbage
• Cauliflower
• Chinese cabbage
• Collard greens
• Daikon
• Horseradish
• Kale
• Kohlrabi
• Mustard greens
• Radishes
• Rutabaga
• Swiss chard
• Turnips
• Watercress

Why Get Acupuncture During Pregnancy?

Acupuncture during pregnancy has eased discomfort and maintained the prenatal health of mothers to be for thousands of years, and for good reason.  Acupuncture treatments when performed properly by a skilled practitioner, has many benefits with no side effects. Below is a breakdown of how acupuncture can ease common discomforts encountered during pregnancy.
acupuncture for pregnancy

Pregnancy Acupuncture Benefits

  • Stress reduction.  Pregnancy is a stressful time. Hormones are changing creating irritability, nothing fits, the list goes on.  All of this stress builds up in the body, and nerves begin to fray. Acupuncture releases this stress and redirects Qi to reset the mind and relax the body.
  • Pain reduction.  Throughout the pregnancy, the lower back and hips take on the most pressure. The weight of the baby combined with altered blood flow and hormone shifts can cause a significant amount of pain, specifically in those areas. Sometimes swelling of the appendages occur creating carpal tunnel syndrome-like symptoms.  Acupuncture redirects stuck Qi to reduce pain and swelling.
  • Increased energy.  During pregnancy, so much energy redirects to the act of creating a person that it can leave the mother feeling sluggish and fatigued. Additionally, altered sleep patterns due to her changing body can make it difficult to get through the day.  Acupuncture stimulates the body and mind and resets healthy sleep patterns.
  • Managing depression.  Prenatal and postpartum depression are widespread problems, and many antidepressants are not safe for pregnant women. It is well known that acupuncture treatments create a sense of well-being.  Studies also show that acupuncture is nearly as effective as Prozac at alleviating depression.
  • A quicker, shorter labor.  Acupuncture and acupressure has worked for thousands of years to induce labor, shorten labor, and alleviate labor pain.

How Acupuncture Works

acupuncture for womenThere are 12 main meridians along the body. Meridians are acupuncture channels. The meridians connect the acupuncture points.  These points run beside dozens of energy pathways. The acupuncturist stimulates these points by inserting a needle into the proper location. The needles are nearly hair-thin, and most say there is no pain. Acupressure uses the same points but relies on pressure using the fingers instead of needles.  Continuing acupuncture after pregnancy is also helpful, as it helps with preventing depression and the “baby blues.”

Getting Help

Dr. Laurie Binder is a Certified Ob/Gyn Nurse Practitioner and a Licensed Acupuncturist.   With more than twenty years experience in the field, she started her medical career in the labor and delivery area.  She is an expert in fertility, childbirth, pregnancy and women’s health from both Western medical and traditional Chinese medicine viewpoints.  For more information check out her CV and contact to schedule an appointment.

Acupuncture for Weight Loss and Fitness

With the New Years coming up, it is likely that you have weight loss as one of your resolutions. In fact, the day after New Years is known as the day most people sign up to the gym in order to get in shape. Most of the time this resolve wears off in a matter of weeks and many quit. They go back to living their unhealthy lives (“But I’ll start Monday”) until next the New Years when they will feel temporarily motivated once again. If this sounds like you, look into acupuncture to help you achive your weight loss and fitness goals.

Acupuncture For Exercise Injuries

muscle painReports have showed that acupuncture is not only effective for motivation, but can also treat common injuries such as sprains in the shoulder, neck, wrist, knee, hip, and elbow as well as inflamed muscles and overall body strain.

Injuries and pain can certainly reduce motivation to exercise and clean up the diet.

Oriental medicine can both reduce pain and prevent the injury from developing further. Research has showed that acupuncture has aided in the healing process of sports injuries by decreasing pain and by increasing blood flow to and away from the injured area. This increases the speed of healing as well as lessens the effects of bruising or swelling. Acupuncture can also prevent further injury by strengthening the area around the injury. Even some professional sports teams have acupuncturists on staff for emergency situations.

Acupuncture For Weight Loss

acupuncture weight loss resultsBack to the subject of weight loss, acupuncture and oriental medicine can help you reach your goal. These treatments can soothe the emotions such as the ones that promote giving in, reduce food cravings, increase the metabolic rate, and aid in the digestion process.

Weight loss acupuncture points involve both the liver and spleen, which are believed to be directly linked with weight loss. If there is an energy imbalance in either of these of these organs, then this will create dis-order that can cause the body to gain weight.

Studies have shown that acupuncture and oriental medicine affects the endocrine system, metabolism, digestive system, and nervous system. The benefits of optimizing these systems include increasing natural energy, decreased appetite, reduced stress, improving the absorption of nutrients, and boosting the metabolism.

In conclusion, Oriental medicine and acupuncture is an excellent adjunct to your fitness and weight loss plan.
If you are having trouble in your quest to shed those extra pounds, then acupuncture may be just what you need.  To boost your energy, suppress your appetite, and lose that extra weight contact us to set up an appointment.

Acupuncture and Headaches

Studies Show that Acupuncture Stops Headaches

acupuncture for migraineCochrane Researchers conducted two different studies to show that acupuncture is indeed an effective treatment for the prevention and mitigation of migraines and headaches.

The goal of both studies was to discover if acupuncture is able to reduce how often headaches occur in a person. The first study was more focused on mild, yet frequent headaches while the second studied more chronic, yet less frequent headaches, or migraines. Both trials together involved over six thousand patients in total.

The studies lasted around eight weeks. The first showed that those who received acupuncture had fewer headaches than those who took standard pain medications. The second reported the same results.

acupunctureIn one case that involved about three hundred patients, acupuncture was shown to reduce headaches by as much as two hundred percent. These results initiated a similar test to be conducted for those who suffered chronic tension headaches. In this test the people involved were split up into three different groups over an eight week period. One group received no treatment, the second received minimal acupuncture (which is when needles don’t fully activate the point targeted), and the third received normal acupuncture. The group that received no treatment suffered one and a half fewer days of headaches, the minimal acupuncture group had around six and a half days of no headaches, and the full acupuncture group had a whole week of no headaches.

Headaches Treated with Acupuncture

These results show a strong correlation between acupuncture treatment and reduction in headaches.  In addition to acupuncture, there are some lifestyle changes that can be made to help reduce and treat headaches:

Lifestyle Change #1: Stress Management
meditiationStress is the number one cause of tension headaches.  Meditation is an excellent way to reduce stress.

Lifestyle Change #2: Sleep
sleepSleep is more important than you think. Most people need at least eight hours of sleep per night in order to maintain optimal mental and physical function.

Lifestyle Change #3: Eat Healthy
fertility dietSmall, regular, healthy meals are best for maintaining energy and managing blood sugar.  If you aren’t eating properly, then blood sugar can fall quickly which will result in a headache. Foods that can induce headaches include red meats, salty refined foods, and alcohol.

Lifestyle Change #4: Keep a Headache Journal
Keeping a headache journal will help your healthcare provider figure out the triggers of your headache as well as how to prevent them from happening.  When you have a headache record how much sleep and water you’ve had in the last 24 hours, meals, supplements, exercise, etc.

Lifestyle Change #5: Exercise
running woman outsideExercise is actually necessary for the healthy functional body.  It is not optional.  If you want to feel good, exercise.  If you don’t want to exercise, be prepared not to feel good.  Exercise optimizes all of your body’s functions, specifically blood flow which figures greatly in the realm of headaches.

Acupuncture for Athletes

Usain Bolt runningCoaches and athletes are always looking for news ways to improve athletic performance to beat out their opponents. Many people involved in sports are discovering that acupuncture can increase one’s athletic ability; furthermore it can help in the healing process of injuries caused by sports. Oriental medicine states that acupuncture will improve a person’s strength by increasing the flow of Qi, also known as life energy, in the body. It will also restore any imbalances that refrains the body from working at its maximum potential. Acupuncturists are hired by professional sports teams now more than ever to keep players in their best condition.

Olympic athletes also use acupuncture techniques as well, especially those from Eastern countries. Yao Ming, a seven foot six inch tall basketball player from China, is best known for using acupuncture to help in the healing process of his ankle, which he had to get surgery on in April. Wang Qun, a Chinese swimmer, is also known for using acupuncture and oriental medicine to restore the body back to good health. It appeared she used a cupping technique to relieve either muscle pain or a cold.

Studies on Acupuncture for Athletic Performance

Stephen CurrySeveral studies have been done to show an exact measurement of how acupuncture affects athletic performance. A study reported by the American Journal of Acupuncture reported that acupuncture increased the anaerobic capacity of young males which allowed them to work the body longer than most. They also found that they were able to perform higher work loads as well due to the management of their blood lactate accumulation. Lower heart rates were also reported.

A similar study was done by the Beijing University of Traditional Chinese Medicine which called for athletes who could run five thousand miles. After the run they were given acupuncture treatment before they could even regain proper breathing. Those who received it had their heart rates return or normal faster than those who didn’t.

Acupuncture for Injury and Rehabilitation

Acupuncture is also used for aiding in the healing process of injuries by reducing swelling, inflammation, and muscle cramps. It can also be used to help manage pain and to increase the flexibility of injured muscles. Acupuncture can be applied at any time during the healing process. It aims to treat the main injury as well as any conditions caused by the injuries such as recurrence or severity. Sports injuries usually involves some sort of physical trauma like falls, collisions, crushing, sprains, and blows to the to body’s tissues and tendons.

The most common athletic injuries treated with acupuncture include tennis elbow, groin pull, muscle pull, runner’s knee, shin splints, arch pain, Achilles tendonitis, ankle sprain, neck pain, lower back strain, hamstring strain and shoulder impingement.

If you suffer from an injury or wish to improve your overall athletic performance, then don’t hesitate to contact us today to set up an appointment.

Update!

Cupping Gains Popularity at 2016 Olympics

Micheal Phelps and other USA Olympic athletes were treated with the Traditional Chinese Medicine technique cupping to promote healing, recovery and blood flow to muscles.  Related article here

Herbal Medicine for Athletes

herbal medicine
Examples of herbs for athletic performance

  • Siberian Ginseng
  • Cordyceps
  • Ginseng

* The improper use of herbal medicine can be potentially dangerous. Please always consult with your health practitioner before taking any herbal products.

The Benefits Of A Fertility Diet Combined With Acupuncture

Acupuncture is part of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) and can improve fertility by restoring balance. However, if you continue to eat foods that expose you to toxins and promote inflammation, the benefits of acupuncture are reduced over time. Thus, embracing a “ fertility diet ” maximizes the benefits of acupuncture for fertility.

fertility dietAcupuncture works to improve uterine lining.  This increases blood flow to the uterus.  It also helps regulate hormones and reduce stress. TCM treatments and therapies restore the free flow of energy throughout the body and organs. In contrast, Qi stagnation can cause imbalances which can negatively impact health and fertility.

Infertility Diagnosis and Treatment

Kidney stagnation is a common diagnosis in patients presenting with unexplained infertility.  The kidney system is essential in reproductive processes according to TCM. A fertility diet consistent with TCM principles help restore balance to the reproductive system. For example, eating proteins, such as chicken, duck, eggs, seeds or nuts improve the free flow of energy to the kidney.

healthy dietAnother consideration in terms of restoring balance is reducing toxins in the body that cause inflammation. Inflammation can lead to reduced fertility. By eliminating major sources of inflammation in the body, acupuncture and a fertility diet can improve one’s fertility. One way to rid the body of toxins is striving to eat organically and avoiding processed foods and refined and excessive sugar. Acupuncture can also help rid the body of toxins by improving circulation, digestion and elimination.

Fertility Diet

The appropriate intake of carbohydrates and protein are also important in a fertility diet. Too many carbohydrates raise blood sugar, which may affect your hormone balance. Too much protein hinders digestion and thus can cause a build-up of toxins in the body. Eating whole green foods is also important for restoring balance in the body. They contain antioxidants, vitamins and minerals that improve, repair and protect your cellular metabolism.

Another part of a fertility diet is minimizing sugar consumption, which is a factor in PCOS symptoms. Limiting processed foods is one way to control your sugar intake. If you eat whole foods that are organic you will have less issues with hormone imbalances that cause infertility.

fertilityAcupuncture has proven to be effective in improving the success rates of fertility treatments.  Acupuncture combined with a fertility diet has also had dramatic success in controlling the symptoms of Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS), a major cause of infertility in women.  Combining both elements of TCM and a change in diet improves the regularity of menstrual cycles, which can also help women ovulate more consistently.

Depending on your system and where the free flow of your energy is blocked in your body, certain foods can help improve your fertility. A qualified TCM fertility expert can provide a tailored fertility diet.  Working with an acupuncturist will also improve the functioning of the body in general.

Contact us if you would like to learn more ways acupuncture and a fertility diet can improve your fertility quotient.

Related: acupuncture fertility los angeles

Acupuncture for a Natural and Healthy Pregnancy and Childbirth

acupuncture for pregnancyIt is only natural that when the mother is healthy that will go a long way to insure the health of the baby. Acupuncture and traditional Chinese medicine are methods proven safe and effective for treating common problematic pregnancy symptoms. These can include, to name a few: morning sickness, water retention, edema, neck pain, back pain, leg cramps, sciatica, insomnia, fatigue, exhaustion, depression, anxiety, heartburn, constipation, swelling, vomiting, nausea, pelvic pain, headache, carpal tunnel syndrome, and other discomforts. This ancient medical system will treat the cause of the imbalance rather than just mitigate symptoms. Pregnancy care acupuncture treatments will help in creating a strong and suitable environment for the birth of a child by balancing the mother, as well as help soothe pregnancy discomforts.

Acupuncture is also used in preventing health problems that may occur during or after pregnancy. Results have shown that more and more women are using acupuncture to help make the entire childbearing year more comfortable and may prevent or treat common problems associated with pregnancy.

Although acupuncture can be used to prevent such symptoms, treatments can also address relieving symptoms once they have occurred.

Acupuncture treatments can be used in the weeks prior to the due date by preparing the woman’s body for the intense work of birth. There is a treatment that can also encourage the baby to move in to the optimal head down position prior to birth. In addition, Acupuncture treatments have been employed to induce labor as well. The points targeted increase the amount, strength, and regularity of contractions and stimulate cervical ripening. It is common to see women use acupuncture to induce labor in addition to using it for pain relief.

How Getting Acupuncture During Pregnancy Can Make You More Comfortable

pregnant womanThere are many discomforts during pregnancy, from having to sleep on your side to emotional swings due to raging hormones. To make the problem worse, there is a never-ending list of medications that aren’t to be taken while pregnant. Fortunately, acupuncture during pregnancy is completely safe and is often used to treat a variety of issues that pregnancy causes.

While acupuncture is perfectly safe for pains and muscle tensions during pregnancy, it is even used to alleviate some of the anxiety, worry and depression that can result from hormone fluctuations. In fact, a Stanford study showed that 63 percent of women that received depression focused acupuncture had a decrease in depression, nearly triple the control group.

Of course, not all women experience depression during their pregnancy. However, acupuncture is still an excellent and safe choice for dealing with all of the little aches and pains that come along, especially with all of the medication restrictions. What’s even more exciting is that you don’t need treatment nearly as often as you would need to take medication, and there are no side effects as there would be with medication.

Pregnancy is a very difficult time, from morning sickness to hormone swings, so it’s important to minimize stress. Not only will this help you, but reducing your stress level helps your baby as well. The more you are able to relax, the less overall discomfort you will feel. Don’t endure more pain, cramping, or depression that you need to; let specialized acupuncture help you feel better.

To learn more or to schedule an appointment, contact us today.

Acupuncture for Skin Conditions – A Natural Approach to Skin Care

acupuncture and skinTraditional Oriental Medicine and acupuncture are used to effectively relieve skin conditions of all types. Our skin lets us know the condition of our body overall and reacts to certain substances, like pollen or poison oak, in order to let the body know that it is best to avoid if possible. Skin conditions can be caused by imbalances in your diet, emotions, environment, and weather.

Healthy Skin

In order to keep the skin healthy inside and out, it is important to address internal problems. Acupuncture can be used to increase the flow of life energy, lymph circulation, collagen production, and blood circulation in order to make the skin look and feel its best. Collagens are proteins that help the skin become elastic, smooth, soft, moist and firm as well as increase the natural muscle tone of the body.

Skin Conditions Treated

acupuncture for skinThe skin problems acupuncture and oriental medicine can treat include psoriasis, shingles, rosacea, urticaria, pruitus, acne, eczema, and dermatitis. When treating any of these conditions, a customized plan will be created to suit your specific needs. Even if several people all have rosacea, different treatment plans will be created around specific symptoms and their current lifestyle. The techniques involved will include different types of exercises, diet changes, general lifestyle adjustments, and herbal medicines to restore balance to one’s life energy.

Oriental medicine states that our body’s condition is determined by what we eat, and that is completely right. Refined and processed foods can cause in imbalance in the skin’s Qi (life energy) and cause the above skin conditions. Below are the top foods and beverages you need to include into your diet in order to feel and look your best.

Nutrition for Healthy Skin

Water is the most important substance for keeping the body and skin healthy. Proper hydration is vital to our health as it keeps the cells that transport nutrients into the body and removes toxins hydrated. Water also is important for increasing the quality of our life energy.

Green tea is the second and only other beverage recommended for daily consumption. The effects of green tea have been studied for quite some time with results showing that green tea decreases aging as well as increased polyphenols. Polyphenols are chemicals that reduce inflammation and improve immune function. A study in the Archives of Dermatology reports that green tea is also used to decrease the risk of skin cancer developing either by consuming it or apply it to the skin.

Blueberries, plums, strawberries, and blackberries are the top four fruits that we absolutely need in our diet. The Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry reports that in order to get the maximum amount of antioxidants our body needs it is recommended that we should consume those four fruits. Antioxidants are responsible for protecting our cells from dying out as well as guarding them from outside forces, which increases the strength of our immune system while reducing our body’s aging process.

Brown rice, whole grain bread, tuna, and turkey all contain selenium, which is a specific antioxidant designed to increase the elasticity of our skin and keeps it healthy. This antioxidant also plays a huge role as a preventative for skin cancer cause by skin damage from the sun.

Flax seed, walnuts, salmon, and olive oil contains the essential fatty acids our body needs in order to keep our skin moist, body flexible, and promotes the skin repairing process. In order to get these fatty acids, we must have a diet that contains walnuts, flax seed, flax seed oil, or fish. Besides the omega 3 fatty acid, olive oil promotes lubrication and firmness of the skin. Make sure to look for olive oil that states that it hasn’t been refined too much in order to get the most from it.

Sweet potatoes and carrots are two vegetables we must have in order to get a sufficient amount of vitamin A. This vitamin is responsible for protecting our skin against harmful entities as well as increases elasticity, reduces the chance of infection, and prevents wrinkles. Deep orange vegetables, like sweet potatoes and carrots, are the foods containing the most vitamin A.

Contact me today so we can start healing your skin and look and feel better overall.

Acupuncture for Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

carpal tunnel syndromeCarpal tunnel syndrome is an overuse injury caused by constant repetition of a single task, which is usually due to work-related motions. In fact injuries like carpal tunnel syndrome are the leading cause of missed work days, with the most common being our main subject. Carpal tunnel syndrome is the reason for a few million visits to a physician each year. Typists are most known for injuring their wrist due to the constant motion of their fingers and wrists.

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Symptoms

The symptoms of any similar injury include pain, cold feeling, lack of strength, feeling of stiffness, numbness, and tightness in the arms. Surgery and pain killers used to be the most popular option, though more and more people have been looking into more natural ways to treat this injury. Today people are turning to acupuncture as their treatment of choice. Researchers have also tested this method as a treatment and discovered that it may be a much better alternative than even corticosteroids for carpal tunnel syndrome.

What is a carpal tunnel anyway? This part of your body can be described as parts that make up the wrist, including all ligaments, bones, nerves, and tendons. Carpal tunnel syndrome develops when the tendons begin to irritate or swell which causes the symptoms listed in the paragraph above in the wrists, fingers, and palms. At first you’ll only notice a tingling or burning sensation in the hands and fingers. Eventually it will develop into pain that increases with movement and grip. When symptoms start showing up, that is the time to get it treated or else the consequences may be irreversible.

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Treatments

carpal tunnel syndrome acupuncture treatmentAcupuncture should be the treatment of choice. In oriental medicine it is said that any injury, which includes carpal tunnel syndrome, is due to an imbalance of blood and life energy at the injured area. Besides acupuncture, oriental medicine treatments include various stretching exercises, vitamin supplements, and optional herbal medications. Not only will these methods treat carpal tunnel syndrome, but can also treat conditions such as stiffness, insomnia, headaches, swelling, pain, inflammation, back pain, and neck pain. An acupuncturist will also take note of any conditions that may have causes carpal tunnel syndrome such as obesity, diabetes, or rheumatoid arthritis.

Proof: Acupuncture is the Best Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Treatment

A study conducted by the Clinical Journal of Pain in May of 2009 stated that acupuncture is similarly effective, if not more, than common medicines such as prednisone and corticosteroid for carpal tunnel syndrome. This study placed people into two separate groups with one receiving steroids while the other received acupuncture. It was discovered that the acupuncture group had a much better time managing their pain and a significantly larger reduction of swelling and tingling than the group who received prednisone.

If you would rather have a natural treatment that is less invasive than surgery and just as effective, acupuncture would be the choice to go with. Contact Dr. Laurie Binder at Santa Monica Acupuncture and Wellness if you or anyone you know has carpal tunnel syndrome.