For sake of discussion, let’s talk about allergic rhinitis, or hay fever–the epitome of the spring allergy– from a western medical perspective. This allergic rhinitis is a classical example of compromised immunity. Basically, the immune system has a hyper response to a strong pathogen (pollen, an abundance of cat dander, etc) and this causes a rapid physiological changes resulting in itchy eyes and throat, sinus congestion, sneezing, asthma and even diarrhea. Exposure to an allergen would cause a massive release of IgE antibodies which attach to white blood cells known as mast cells. These cells are mostly located in the lungs and upper respiratory tract, the lining of the stomach and the skin. When these cells are stimulated, they release a number of chemicals including histamine which produce the allergic symptoms.
So you’ve been told that antihistamines are the answers to your allergy symptoms. Well, antihistamines work well in suppressing the symptoms but not the root cause of weak immune functions.
Traditional Chinese medicine, on the other hand, views allergic rhinitis as a reflection of weak and imbalanced energy in our organs, especially the lungs, the spleen, the liver and gallbladder, and the kidneys. If we can augment the energy flows of those organs, our immune functions can dramatically increase. Acupuncture clearly helps to deal with balancing these organs. Chinese herbs and some nutritional supplements can be of tremendous help also. But you want to do more, get really ready for the brutal allergy attacks, don’t you?
A study appeared in “The Clinical Journal of Pain” in May, 2009, revealed the efficacy of using acupuncture and Chinese medicine. This study compared two groups of patients with mild to moderate symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome. One group received eight sessions of acupuncture treatments over the course of eight weeks. The other group received daily doses of a drug called prednisolone, a steroid used to reduce inflammation and relieve pain.
Evaluations at the end of the second and fourth week revealed that both groups enjoyed a significant reduction in symptoms. However, the acupuncture group received an exceptional benefit that the steroid group did not. At the conclusion of the trial, the patients receiving acupuncture treatments showed a statistically significant drop in their nocturnal awakenings.
From an Oriental medicine perspective, CTS is seen as a disruption of the flow of Qi and Blood within the area and associated with Cold, Dampness or Wind penetrating the muscles and sinews of the wrist. Acupuncture points, stretching exercises, herbal remedies and nutritional supplements are chosen to treat accordingly.
Acupuncture is extremely effective at treating carpal tunnel syndrome; eliminating the need for surgery or the use of anti-inflammatory drugs or corticosteroids. In fact, one of the most common reasons that people get acupuncture is for repetitive stress injuries, including carpal tunnel syndrome. Not only reducing the swelling, inflammation and pain in the wrist, acupuncture addresses any headaches, neck pain, shoulder stiffness and sleeping problems that often accompany this condition.
Your treatment may also take into account any underlying conditions that contribute to the development of CTS including obesity, rheumatoid arthritis, thyroid problems, diabetes, hormonal changes of pregnancy and menopause.
If you or someone you know suffers from carpal tunnel syndrome, please call our office at 201.760.8811 to find out more about how acupuncture, Chinese medicine and nutritional supplements can help.
Whether it is anxiety or depression, when it comes to any physiological and/or emotional issues, I need to repeat myself: Stay away from three food items: Sugar, Wheat, and Dairies. All these foods create empty heat in the body, dampen the body, and block the energy flow. Just removing these foods for even one week can make a huge difference in one’s emotional landscape.
Foods Helping Anxiety/Depression
Asparagus, avocados, and berries
Garlic, onion, cinnamon, and honey
Cashews, walnuts, and sunflower seeds
Chamomile tea, and green tea
Oysters, and grass-fed beef
Nutritional Supplements Recommended for Anxiety/Depression
Vit D, Vit B12, Vit C
St. John’s Wort
Note: I have successfully used the following Standard Process products in treating anxiety/depression patients:
B6-Niacynamide, Mineral Tranquilizer, Orchex, E-Poise, Zymex, Livaplex, and Calcium Lactae.
In Chinese Medicine, allergic rhinitis as related to “Wind” noting that symptoms come and go rapidly, cause congestion, and make the person want to avoid windy situations. This Wind often coexists with a deficiency of the Defensive or Wei Qi. People with Wei Qi deficiency catch colds easily, and allergy symptoms may be particularly bad in the spring or fall, seasons which are generally windy.
The acupuncturist also looks for constitutional or more deeply-rooted signs in each person who presents with allergies. The principle here is treating the whole person. Often people with chronic allergies show signs of Spleen or Kidney Deficiency as well as Lung signs. The goal of the acupuncturist is to develop a plan which addresses the person’s acute symptoms and provides relief, while addressing the underlying immune system imbalance which is thought to be at the root of the person’s allergies.
When treated with acupuncture for allergies, there is often a quick response. Often patients get some relief during the first visit while lying on the exam table with their acupuncture needles in place. After an initial series of treatments, patients come in for further treatments on an as needed basis. Some patients come back in once or twice a year for a booster while others may come more often.
In general, patients do better if they avoid sugar and milk in their diets. They have better and longer lasting responses. Patients continue with whatever standard treatments they are currently undergoing while getting acupuncture treatments. Most patients end up significantly reducing or eliminating their dependence on allergy medications.
Treatments often include dietary modification, the use of nutritional supplements, and acupuncture.
Food addiction, especially sugar addition, usually stem from Candida (yeast, mold, and fungus) overgrowth. The first and foremost important thing to do is to embark on internal cleansing which may be filled with parasites, bacteria, virus, and candida, along with heavy metal deposits. In addition, we recommend a drastic diet change that limits gluten, dairy products, and sugar intake.
March is an ideal time to clean up undigested food debris and detrimental parasite/candida buildup during the winter season. One of the most effective, gentle, and easy-to-do program is Standard Process 21-day detox program. This program consists of 4 different nutritional supplements designed to detoxify the nervous, endocrine, and digestive systems. Typically, people drop 10-20 pounds of their weight, while experiencing a renewed energy level, easier digestion, improved sleep patterns, and an incredible sense of well-being.
We have been actively promoting this program to our patients over the years, and can vouch for its far-reaching benefits. One word of caution, though, is that please do not start the program without a medical practitioner’s guidance.