By Sara Calabro Acupuncture strengthens natural resistance to disease. I recently came across that sentence when I was leafing through some old notes from acupuncture school. It was underlined twice and highlighted. Although I don’t remember writing it or which of my teachers said it, the words clearly resonated with me at the time. Rereading them now, especially during peak flu season, they still do. It’s a simple idea and yet profound. Forget endorphins. Forget improved blood circulation. Forget placebo. This is how acupuncture works—by strengthening our natural resistance to disease. Whether we’re talking about the flu, and hence its immunity-boosting ability, or back pain, acupuncture makes us stronger so that we can naturally resist illness and pain. This is true whether it’s happening due to fired up neurotransmitters or a practitioner with exceptional bedside manner.
Digest This: You Can Manage Extra Weight, Constipation, Bloating, Reflux and Bad Breath With Acupuncture
By Nancy Byrne We’ve all heard the saying “You are what you eat.” It’s true, but acupuncture lends further insight into our relationship with food by suggesting that we are also how we eat. On some level, we know this already. Think about the times when you’ve skipped breakfast and then gorged yourself much too quickly on a huge lunch. Chances are, you felt a little irritable and anxious before stuffing your face, after which you probably felt uncomfortably full and bloated. Low blood sugar followed by undue stress on your digestive organs is one way of looking at this scenario. However, acupuncture offers an explanation that’s much more interesting and broader in scope. Understanding this perspective is an initial step toward avoiding weight gain, constipation, bloating, acid reflux and even bad breath.
By Sara Calabro The “Why Are You Doing That Point?” series is back, this time with an easily accessible and broadly useful acupuncture point on the lower leg. Gall Bladder 34—also known as Yanglingquan (Chinese name), Yang Mound Spring (English translation) and GB34 (acupuncturist lingo)—is located just below the knee on the lateral (pinkie toe) side of the leg (see picture below). You can find this point by running your finger up the outside of your leg until you hit a bony prominence. That’s the head of your fibula bone, and Gall Bladder 34 is located just slightly in front of and below where the bone juts out. You can press this point yourself to alleviate stiff muscles, tightness along the side of the body, and to assist your Liver Qi in chilling out. Here’s why acupuncturists so often reach for Gall Bladder 34.
By Sara Calabro Ever get that thing where your eyelid won’t stop twitching? Annoying, right? It comes on unexpectedly and makes it hard to concentrate on anything else. Recently, AcuTake contributing writer Eric Kerr had this experience, known as myokymia in Western medical parlance. His eyelid had been twitching for three months straight! He suspected it was caused by excessive computer use, a likely theory given the known ramifications of too much screen time. These include eye pain and fatigue—which can cause involuntary spasms in the eyelids—as well as vision loss, dry eyes and headaches. The Western medical world now has a name for this, Computer Vision Syndrome. Inspired to help others deal with their own computer-induced eye problems, Eric made this video on acupressure for eye health. All points mentioned in that video are highly recommended for anyone suffering from eye problems. But when I heard Eric’s story and watched his video, it reminded of me an even simpler technique for reducing eye strain that one of my teachers shared with me while I was in acupuncture school.
By Sara Calabro Happy New Year! We’re excited to spend 2013 explaining how acupuncture works and sharing acupuncture-inspired tips for leading a healthier, simpler, more meaningful life. Acupuncture helps us see the world differently—with more hope, openness, intention, gratitude, compassion, patience and clarity. In doing so, it changes us. Here are 13 specific ways that acupuncture can change your life in 2013.