|Posted on January 3, 2017 at 5:25 PM|
We all have good intentions about what we want to improve for the upcoming year. Acupuncture is not for just fixing what is broken but can enhance our life in many ways from optimizing health to increasing our willpower. So if you want help sticking to those resolutions,see a registered acupuncturist with a background in traditional Chinese medicine (like myself). Plus, getting acupuncture this year, if you haven't tried it or have not had a treatment in a while, is a good resolution all by itself:
|Posted on October 10, 2016 at 10:35 AM|
This is a lovely event with many alternative health practitioners from our local area. I will be there. Please see the poster below.
Eastern Shore Alternative Health & Healing Art Fall Festival
HOW YOU EAT, HOW YOU THINK, HOW YOU MOVE
The following is an outline of the weekend’s schedule. This is the 4th Annual Festival, bringing awareness to the community of the various healing modalities & healthy alternatives that are available locally in our community.
The festival will be held at Seaforth Community Hall.
Saturday November 5, 2016:
10:00am-4:00pm - Vendors tables will be there plus there with 1/2hr. interactive demonstrations & presentations throughout the day to learn more about the local practitioners in the community.
7:00- 9:00pm - An Evening of Conversation with Spirit- Group Session with Rita & Phil the “Sound Beings”
Sunday, November 6, 2016:
10:00am-4:00pm - Individually booked sessions at Chamomile Wellness Center and Private Gong Baths at Seaforth Hall
7:00-9:00pm - Group Gong Bath with the” Sound Beings”
Please call Melissa Bellefontaine @ 902-221-6393 to book a private session with a practitioner or get more information
|Posted on October 7, 2016 at 8:40 PM|
The sunflower is such a happy flower. It is almost looks like it is smiling. It helps me remember to be thankful as I look out at this wonderful plant from my office desk.
The state of gratitude is such a calming state of mind and is a wonderful place from which to view the world. It has the power of drawing goodness to itself and creating more reasons to be thankful. Gratitude not only benefits those at which it is directed but also enriches the one who generates it.
Autumn is the time of the metal element and the corresponding organ systems are the lungs and large intestines. These represent what comes into our lives and what needs to be eliminated. The colour is white and represents purity and righteousness. The emotion paired with this element is grief and our sense of self-worth.
Just as the trees let go of their leaves, so we too need to acknowledge our losses and let them go as we prepare for a new chapter in our lives. Like the earth we all undergo a transformation that is perfectly designed. Allow yourself to look at nature as a mirror and see that, you too, are beautiful. Know that just as this season celebrates its accomplishments in brilliant colours, you too can find a reason to smile.
This is a good time to quiet our minds from external noise and feel our bodies connected to the earth so we can sense our true self. It is then that we can best feel the peace of gratitude envelope us not just at Thanksgiving, but everyday.
|Posted on September 22, 2016 at 7:10 PM|
Autumn is here. The colours of the leaves, in this part of the world, will soon be glorious. The weather has already started to alternate between cool, warm, calm and wind signifying change is upon us. Fall is the Metal Element. Its colour is white. It governs our lungs and large intestines and it affects the skin, nose, water passages, mucous membranes, respiration and voice. The emotions associated with fall are grief and letting go.
Instead of slipping into sadness and regret, now is the time to be mindful of our blessings and take inventory of everything that has been accomplished. Like the full Harvest Moon we just experienced, everything has come to fruition, has bloomed, grown and produced its fruit. It is time to let go and celebrate. The landscape is a testament to that as it visually gives praise to the earth and its people for a job well done.
As we reflect and analyze, in the coming months, we are better able to see what can be improved or what was missed. Clarity grows like the ever-increasing crispness in the air as we examine our learnings, observations, acknowledgments and wonderment. Like the hardwood trees that shed their leaves, we have the opportunity to shed the things that no longer serve us. That gives us room for change.
As we travel inward over the fall and into the winter months, we need to rest and nourish ourselves. It is time for pungent, savoury, spicy and warming foods; socks to warm our feet; and scarves to protect our neck from wind. We need to restock our reserves so we will be eager and ready to embark on the next chapter of our journey with enthusiasm and hope as we edge toward the path of our true calling.
|Posted on June 2, 2016 at 11:45 AM|
Time goes by so fast when you are busy. I wonder therefore if you age more quickly when you have a lot going on? I wonder if a person could stay younger, longer by slowing down and living more simply?
According to the “Yellow Emperor’s Classic of Medicine (The Neijing)”, there were four types of ancient peoples that existed on earth, a long time ago, that lived very long lives and did not display the usual signs of aging. The Immortals lived the longest, followed by the Sages, then the Achieved Beings and lastly the Naturalists who lived to over one hundred years.
The secret of their longevity was that they “…lived simply…and close to nature…to prevent pathogens from invading”. They got their energy from nature and lived in harmony with the environment, seasons, sun, moon and stars. They preserved their life force by adapting to society without adopting or getting pulled in to popular, thinking, cultural norms, emotional drama, excessive living, ambitions or desires.
These folks were able to heal themselves. When they got sick they “…guided properly the emotions and spirit and re-directed the energy flow…to heal the condition”. If this did not work, they used herbs and herb-wines. Finally if a condition worsened, an accurate diagnosis with acupuncture and moxibustion, were used as an intervention to regain health and balance.
As a result of living simply, these folks also had remarkable abilities. They were able to travel freely outside the conventional view of time and space. They could see and hear far beyond what was considered normal. They were focused, accomplished much and kept a clear mind by integrating the mental, physical and spiritual with exercise, meditation, eating a balanced diet, at regular times and maintaining a pure conscience.
In Chinese medicine our life force or “Jing” and health is compromised by a weak constitution, emotional extremes, extremes in our external environment, overwork, inactivity as well as how, what and when you eat. This book (written approximately 2500 years ago) states “These days” people’s lifestyles have become detrimental to their health and they only live to fifty years of more. I believe this same statement is true today.
If we simplified our busy lives, got back to nature and focused more on what is most important to us, we would live longer and healthier lives. I am not so sure we would acquire supernatural abilities but we would probably find more joy and happiness.
|Posted on May 3, 2016 at 12:20 AM|
There is so much confusion and conflicting reports about what we need to eat to be healthy that many people are saying, “I don’t know what to eat anymore.” My thought is that surely someone smart enough to stick the human race on this planet, would be smart enough to give us the resources to survive and thrive.
The discussion about the latest and greatest super food and arch villain of the edible world, is almost as popular as the weather. (Almost) Everyone talks about it and people have become very polarized in their beliefs about food. What to eat and what you believe about nutrition runs as deep and is as sensitive a topic as religion, in some circles.
I believe I have found what I was looking for. The answer lies in looking to our past. Our ancestors grew their own food, ate the animals they raised or hunted and lived off the land. According to studies looking back at all the historical data, our parents, parents, parents, did not have the same levels of health issues we have today with diabetes, obesity, infertility, heart disease,autoimmune disorders, depression, anxiety etc. Also they did not have shorter life spans, as some people would have us believe.
According to some emerging and controversial experts, we are essentially malnourished because of what we eat in our modern diets. There is much science looking back at large amounts of data and trends pointing to the importance of the traditional diet. This makes so much sense to me and I believe this is the common sense we forgot. Every food below under ``Do Eat``contains vital substances that our bodies need to grow, develop, repair and thrive.
Here is a summary of what I am learning about our traditional diets that we need to adopt to be healthy. If you have heard older folks say “eat everything in moderation” this sums up some of what we should do, with a few exceptions under caution below:
Fermented foods (sauerkraut, kimchi, yogurt,kombucha, pickles (no vinegar); Seaweed; Organ meats; Grass fed beef; Free range eggs; Cod liver oil, fish eggs; Fish, salmon, herring; Lots of vegetables with fat; Esp. cooked green vegetables, kale, broccoli; cabbage family, cauliflower, turnip; onion family leeks, onions; Mushrooms; Brightly coloured vegetables,Soup stocks, bone broth; Whole milk; Whole eggs, Butter, lard/bacon fat, coconut oil, pure olive oil; Fruits in season; Berries; A variety of foods, all food groups; Real, natural food (as close to the source as possible)
Restrict sugar; Restrict carbohydrates; No artificial sweeteners; Must ferment or sprout grains, nuts, and seeds; No processed oils; Good quality fats (toxins are stored in fats, know your sources); No processed foods; No soda drinks; No distilled water; No soy products; Do not restrict fat; Do not remove food groups with restrictive diets
|Posted on April 3, 2016 at 10:10 PM|
Suppressing emotions makes it harder to find our life path. It can also make us sick. Our life force needs to be flowing appropriately for us to be healthy. Just as blockages in the flow of Qi from trauma can cause pain, extremes in emotions affect the flow of Qi causing Qi and blood stagnation, heat, dampness and phlegm. These patterns that can produce a long list of physiological imbalances and physical symptoms. Read More: http://www.gwenwilliams.ca/apps/blog/show/43899682-emotions-the-good-and-the-bad
|Posted on February 11, 2016 at 9:35 AM|
It is really hard to stay upbeat when we worry about news of perhaps another storm and more shovelling. Where to put it all…? Our leisure activities and travel has been reduced and that leaves us a lot of time to think about things.
That is not a bad thing really. Winter is all about going inward, hibernating in a way and conserving our energy. We can think about what we are doing in our lives and review where we really want to be. This is the real beginning of the year for us as we contemplate goals, dreams and desires. The pure white landscape and sparkle of sunlight reminds us of purity and gives us a blank canvass for a fresh start.
The day length has been getting longer and that gives us hope. This reminds us that there is a light at the end of the tunnel. If you dress really warm and take a moment to smell the freshness the new snow brings and remember that snow brings healing power to the earth.
The snow insulates our gardens and plants from extreme temperature fluctuations, provides needed moisture and nourishes the soil with nitrogen from the atmosphere. It also protects many small creatures and their access to food sources in the winter. Look carefully after a fresh snow and you will see many tracks left by wildlife that you may not even know live around you.
While you practice patience in this quiet time, pamper your health by eating warming cooked and nutritious foods. Use warming spices and reduce the damp forming foods like dairy, milk and fats. Keep your neck, feet and lower back warm to prevent the cold and damp from settling in. Curl up by a heat source and take time to rejuvenate your whole self in body, mind and spirit.
|Posted on January 22, 2016 at 10:30 AM|
Eat Your Medicine - your food is your medicine; Live According to the Seasons - get in synch with nature; Sleep/Breathe/Laugh - pay attention to your body; Be Yourself/Meditiate/Be Grateful - pay attention to your internal world and your authentic self
See Emma's article here: http://www.chinesemedicineliving.com/acupuncture/how-to-get-healthy-in-2016-with-chinese-medicine/?
|Posted on January 20, 2016 at 10:45 AM|
Some of you have heard me tell you to soak your feet at night. Here is a great article. You can just use the water or the few herbs you recognize.:
|Posted on December 15, 2015 at 9:45 AM|
Some of us look forward to this time of year. The air is so fresh and clean. Soon we will enjoy the silence of snow. Summer and fall are loud months. Voices carry on the wind, on the water and people are always outside laughing, talking and being busy. Have you ever noticed how much snow insulates and buffers out noise and sounds? If you are a “water element” like myself, you will look forward to the quiet, slower pace of winter.
Winter is a time of hibernation, contemplation, introspection, getting in touch with our passions and dreaming. In Chinese medicine, winter is correlated to water, dark blue, black, willpower and potential. Like a seed we “go underground”. The emotion of water is fear, the sound is groaning and the organs affected are bladder and kidneys. The kidneys “open to the ears”, support bones, influence hair growth, lay the foundation for reproduction and fertility and are the source of our life force.
The ancient sages tell us to live in harmony with nature and the patterns of the seasons. Winter is the season to conserve energy, heal, recuperate, regenerate and rest. Even though we have electricity to extend our ability to stay up and work late, it is a good idea to go to bed earlier, sleep a little longer and rest more. It is important, especially as winter approaches, to protect our kidneys by keeping our lower back warm and eating foods to support kidney health.
The foods we need to consider for winter include salty and bitter flavours. These support the kidneys or “water energy” because they promote a sinking, centering quality. Bitter foods include endive, watercress, turnip, celery, asparagus, alfalfa, rye, oats, quinoa, amaranth and citrus peels. Bitter herbs include chicory root, dandelion root and burdock root. Salty foods include, miso, soya sauce, seaweeds, salt, millet and barley. Use these foods in warm hearty soups with warm spices like black pepper, ginger, cinnamon and onion. Include warming meats like pork or shellfish, eggs, small dark beans and steamed/cooked greens and vegetables. Also cook foods longer, at lower temperatures with less water.
It is OK to put on the odd pound or two, but keep mobile to keep from getting stiff. A gentle movement therapy like my Five Element Dance is good way to do that. Avoid fasting, strict low calorie diets, lots of cold raw food and cleanses in the upcoming cold months. It is also a good idea to reduce the intensity of any rigorous exercise regimes until spring.
If you want to burst forth in spring with aspirations of good health and lots of energy, this is the time to lay the foundation for that to happen. Now is a good time to come see me for a diagnosis and suggestions to improve any imbalances. You can always book a free consult and see sample of my dance at www.holisticacupuncture.ca.
Happy Holidays Everyone!
|Posted on September 7, 2015 at 9:55 PM|
There's a popular saying in China: hanlu jiao bu lu. This means that people should not leave their feet bare because cold weather is on the way.See: Putting your best feet forward
|Posted on September 2, 2015 at 10:05 PM|
.fall is about refinement. It's time to pare down, to let go of the excesses...focus on what's necessary for winter...See: 7 Acupuncture Tips for a Healthy Fall
|Posted on August 20, 2015 at 10:30 PM|
Chinese medicine physicican & psychiatrist, Dr. Jingduan Yang, says: "Treat symptoms as your friends, not your enemies. Do not silence them or kill them. They are trying to give you important messages. We should respect them and listen to them. We then can make changes in our lifestyles, treat the root causes of problems, and live longer, healthier, and happier lives." See Don't Mask Your Symptoms
|Posted on August 17, 2015 at 10:00 PM|
In Chinese medicine, depression can be an expression of an imbalance that can be related to a number of different patterns...(it) is effective at addressing depression with naturally safe modalities that resolve the root imbalances...See: Chinese Medicine and Depression
|Posted on August 3, 2015 at 10:05 PM|
With acupuncture continuing to grow in popularity and gain acceptance by mainstream medicine, it's important to clarify a few myths and misconceptions...See: Myths about Acupuncture
|Posted on July 21, 2015 at 9:40 PM|
New evidence finds acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine effective for the treatment of menstrual pain.One study reveals a popular herbal medicine for the relief of cramping and pain. Another study found acupuncture as effective as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) for menstrual related pain. See: Menstrual Cramp Relief
|Posted on July 3, 2015 at 10:20 PM|
Although the risk of disease and disability clearly increase with advancing age, poor health is not an inevitable consequence of aging. Throughout the middle and later years, people gradually develop signs and symptoms of aging, like graying and thinning of the hair, ringing in the ears, hearing loss, infertility, diminished sexual function, menopause, forgetfulness, urinary and bowel incontinence, pain and weakness in the lower back, hip, and knees, reduced bone density, and increased risk of fractures.
Western medicine attributes some of these symptoms to deficiencies in sexual hormones such as estrogen and testosterone, which is why hormone replacement has become a focus of "anti-aging" medicine. However, Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) offers a different perspective that is energy-based. From a TCM standpoint, aging is a process of losing kidney qi and essence. We refer here not simply to the organs in our lower backs but to an energy subsystem called the kidney meridian... See: Healthy Aging: Traditional Chinese Medicine Perspective
|Posted on June 15, 2015 at 10:15 PM|
Fatigue, from a Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) perspective, has many different causes. The remedy will be different depending upon the type of fatigue it is. If you experience fatigue, here are tips that lead to vibrant energy. See: Revive Your "Get Up and Go" Using Traditional Chinese Medicine
|Posted on June 7, 2015 at 9:35 PM|
But while some kids may find acupuncture unsettling, the practice... is generally safe for them, according to a new review that is among the first to tackle the issue. See: Is Acupuncture Safe For Children?