Thursday, September 27, 2012

Catching a cold? Go get needled!

There are many things that amaze me about Acupuncture, and the fact that it can prevent a cold from fully developing, is definitely one of them.
Do you know when you wake up and your throat is kind of scratchy, you're feeling a little run down and your co-worker was out yesterday because he was sick? Yeap, that's when you call your acupuncturist and make an appointment to come in that same day.
A lot of times, if it's early enough, through specific points, cupping and herbs, we can slice that cold away and you won't even remember how run down you felt when you woke up.
Even if it's not at the very onset, TCM has beautiful tools to enhance the immune system and help the body fight the evil pathogen faster and better. That ends up translating into a quicker recovery and shorter symptoms duration.
It's always a good idea to drink lots of water and help the body to stay strong by eating healthy, anti-inflammatory foods. That means eating veggies, light and easy to digest soups, rice or quinoa dishes and definitely staying away from fried or processed foods and sugar.
I read this article this morning (in The Acupuncture Today Journal) and thought it would be helpful to share.
Stay healthy and strong!

Illustration showing leg acupuncture points. 
"The following illustrated acupuncture approach is extremely effective in not only alleviating the symptoms associated with cold or flu but, if used early enough, may potentially prevent the symptoms and condition from developing at all. All of the points shown may be stimulated with noninvasive stimulation devices such as the teishein, electronic stimulation or laser, in addition to needles. One of the most effective approaches to successful treatment is to copy the images below and provide them for your patients for self-stimulation of the points throughout the day. Remember, this may be one of the most powerful effects for cold and flu you will ever learn.
Illustration showing hand and wrist acupuncture points. One of the key points is the "miracle" point known as the "common cold" point on the thenar eminence, in line with an imaginary line drawn down the middle of the index finger. If a cold is present, or on the way, this point will be very sore upon palpation. The "sore throat" point is perhaps one of the most dynamic on the body for seemingly miraculous elimination and lessening of pain from sore throat almost immediately. LI 4, ST 36 and SP 6 are extremely effective points for boosting the immune system and are three of the most powerful points on the body for this purpose, when used together. Caution is urged in using these points for any female who may potentially be pregnant, as LI 4 and SP 6 are classic points known to create abortion. If there is a question of pregnancy, eliminate these two points; if not, they are dynamic. These points are historically used to promote delivery in the ninth month when the contents of the uterus are expelled. TH 5 and P 6 are, without question, two of the most effective points in affecting the immune system and building vital resistance. These two points are my personal favorites. This effect is through the extraordinary meridians."
Cheers!

Friday, June 29, 2012

Feng Shui for love!

I have decided to dive into one more aspect of Chinese culture - Feng Shui!
I have been doing a Masters training in Feng Shui through the International School of Feng Shui and I found deep love and appreciation for this magical art. It's so beautiful how it compliments and matches Acupuncture perfectly and harmoniously.
Feng Shui brings harmony and flow by balancing the elements of the home. The energetic shifts are amazing and the testimonials are incredible. I am fascinated and deeply excited to begin my Feng Shui practice.
This is why I decided to write today about simple things to do to attract true love. If you are looking for your soul mate, these are some great ideas!
There are many more things to be done in a house/room to enhance existing relationships and/or bring love to your life though Feng Shui. These are just a few tips. If you would like me to come to your home and do an entire Feng Shui consultation, send me an e-mail or give me call.
Let me know if you do these and what happens! <3


Feng Shui for Love

1.     Make sure things in the bedroom are in pairs: you want to make room for your soul mate!
-       2 night stands
-       2 pillows on the bed
-       2 lamps
-       2 rugs
-       2 chairs or a love seat.
 2.     Make some room in your closet and leave 4,6 or 8 open hangers together to symbolize room in your life for your soul mate
3.     Make sure all artwork and pictures in the bedroom depict love and relationship. No pictures/letters of exs!! Try to avoid family pictures, keep the bedroom a place for a couple’s love
4.     Add books about love, about soul mates, about happy loving relationships on your nightstand.
5.     If your bedroom door squeaks, fix it!! It’s romantic energy leaking out of your room!
6.     No dried flowers, fake plants or cactus in the bedroom. Only lush, beautiful plants. The love flowers are Peonies. Have 2 Peonies in the room and 2 in the southwest corner of your house.
7.     Add 2 Rose quartz in the bedroom and 2 in the southwest corner of the house. You can also place statues/pictures/paintings of animals that mate for life or of 2 people hugging or kissing.
8.     Make sure the southwest corner of your house is clean and clutter free. It’s the Love and Relationship corner of the house. Bring in the rose quartz, fresh flowers and pictures of love.
9.     Write a letter to your soul mate, date it and place it in the nightstand.
The letter to your soul mate should be written as a letter to the one you love.Tell your soul mate how much you appreciate him/her. Tell him/her the qualities he/she has that you love.
Write it in the present tense: what do you two share right now?
How does this relationship make you feel: Inspired, energized, supported, safe…
What the two of you enjoy together: traveling, beach, dinners, cuddle time… 
How the two of you share the same goals and interests.

Remember to have fun with it and to put into this activity the love that you wish to manifest to the world!   
Much love and light to you all!
Andreia




Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Love Yourself!


"You can search throughout the entire universe for someone who is more deserving of your love and affection than you are yourself, and that person is not to be found anywhere. You yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe deserve your love and affection. "
Buddah


Miracles start to happen when we begin to realize the true meaning of loving ourselves. Patience, resilience, admiration and peace of mind take the place of our usual internal chaos.
So many times we are so hard on ourselves and so intolerant of our mistakes.
We believe we can never do right and we carry that ugly belief in our hearts. The heart becomes heavy, the qi becomes stagnant. With stagnation, comes irritation. With intolerance towards ourselves, comes intolerance towards others. A diseased cycle starts to develop - all because we weren't able to be kind and loving to ourselves.
 Change comes slowly and only when we are able to see that some of our actions aren't beneficial to us.  I think the first step is actually realizing we make mistakes and that those mistakes might bother us. Once we can point out which of our behavioral patterns we don't like, we then need to truly understand which action would have been better and we need to decide that this is going to be how we are going to handle this situation from now on. For example: Let's say I scream every time my boyfriend leaves his socks on the bathroom floor. I really don't like screaming and I feel terrible every time I do it and cause an unnecessary fight.. Well, I have decided that this action does not serve me and I don't want to behave that way anymore. So I have to find a "better" way of reacting and chose to act that way from now on. Instead of screaming, I should probably ask him to stop or simply pick them up myself and let go of the silly issue.By doing that, I don't get mad at myself for screaming, I don't feel like I can't control my emotions and I feel really good about being able to change an ugly pattern.
This change doesn't happen over night and it's not easy, but it is entirely possible and it brings the most amazing results! Of course the sock example is silly, but we find ourselves upset and disappointed by our overreactions to silly things all too frequently. By allowing the change to happen,  we find peace of mind and an immense feeling of personal achievement, that can never be taken away from us. We end up teaching ourselves the pathway to always being able to identify and correct "flaws". By the same token, it's much easier to be kind and patient when we already know that change is possible.
When we live and speak our truth, we live a happier and fuller life. We are no longer hiding who we really are and are no longer disappointed by our own attitudes because they come from the heart. We then learn to truly love and respects the beautiful being that we are.


Friday, March 30, 2012

I'm so hungry!

It's 4:30pm. Are you hungry right now? What are you craving? Chocolate brownie with vanilla ice cream?
If you said - yes, please!, then we probably have a problem.
Mostly because big sugar cravings in the afternoon usually point towards not enough protein intake at lunch.
We live life so fast nowadays, we barely have enough time to eat, much less think about what we SHOULD eat. Not only do we need to give it a lot of thought, but we should PLAN it out(and of course, stick to the plan, but that's a different subject...).
By adding good sources of protein for breakfast and for lunch, the sugar cravings in the afternoon diminish. No joke!
I recently decided to give up Gluten because my ND believes I'm allergic to it. I fought that thought for about 2 years. Shameful, I know. But now I'm suddenly on the plan. Instead of having an English muffin with cream cheese and coffee for breakfast, I'm now making Gluten free organic oatmeal (to which I add pecans and raisins), ham and cheese omelet, a gluten free bread toasted (delicious! Called Udi) and a glass of Keifer.
I've been doing that for 7 days now. No coffee, no wheat at all.
I've been feeling so clean, so sharp and guess what? No cravings for sugar, no cravings for caffeine at all!
My metabolism has also picked up a bunch too. I eat breakfast around 8am. By 11:30 I'm already starving.
I am truly impressed and really wanted to share this with you guys.
We really should eat now for how we want to feel later.
I have a few books on healthy eating and I always preach it to my patients. I must say that it feels great to be able to "walk the talk".
Food matters immensely. Take the time to think about what makes you feel uncomfortable after eating and what makes you feel like you can easily go back to work or go on a walk. These are probably good indicators of what you should avoid/consume.
And of course, like I always say: drink a ton of water!
If you have any questions at all about diet and lifestyle modifications, let me know. We can easily sit down and chat about that. I have some amazing hand-outs with lists of foods that help healing for each TCM condition.
Now it's time to eat! Enjoy!

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Emotions, emotions...

Oh these emotions of ours... What a mess they can create!
When we find ourselves in the middle of a very difficult situation, it's so hard to keep our emotions under control. It's so hard to avoid emotional intoxication.
Getting carried away by fear, anger, jealousy or grief is something that most of us have experienced once or twice in our lives. We are humans, and although we like to believe we are 100% in charge of how we act, we still sometimes get caught off guard.
I lost a friend on Saturday. Someone that is very important in the lives of people I love. It was very unexpected, very sudden. Needles to say, everyone's emotions got the best of us. In the middle of all of the pain, I could observe intense fear, panic, and lots of anger. Grief is such an intricate emotion, with so many different phases and aspects to it. Nobody feels it the same way. Nobody can really say what it truly does to them.
In Chinese medicine, grief is the emotion of the Lungs. It's the emotion that can easily harm the fragile organ. I remember in school one of my teachers said the Classics of Chinese Medicine advises one to go outside and scream very loud after the loss of someone.
In that case, one would be preventing stagnation of Qi in the lungs by forcing air out of it while screaming. I'm sure that moves the Qi, but don't really think it can do much for the pain inside.
Just like grief has its effects on our body, so do all other emotions. And of course, so does repressing them.
In my opinion, all emotions need to be felt in their appropriate states. What I mean by that is: be angry when the situation calls for it, be sad, be happy, be scared. These are all healthy emotions and if repressed, can cause a lot of harm.
I saw some of my friends almost pretending the accident didn't happen. I know that isn't healthy. I'm sure they don't want to allow the emotions to flow because they would have to accept the fact and that they have to feel the pain.
Feeling the pain is ok, it's necessary. It's part of the process. The emotion of the Large Intestine is letting go. The Large Intestine is paired with the Lungs in TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine). Grief and Letting go are pairs. They have to be.
We can let go of the pain, we can let go of the emotion of grief. What we can't lose sight of is the love that bonded us, the joys we shared and the beauty that exists in all life.
By allowing all emotions to flow, we learn to deal with them. We learn more about ourselves and realize what is "appropriate" and what is not. Excessive emotions like too much anger or too intense and constant fear shouldn't be there and should be addressed.
Pay attention to your reactions and how long it takes you to snap out of certain emotions. The first step of being in charge is to realize that we really aren't.
Oh, and don't forget: Live in moment, enjoy the present. Tell the ones you love how much you love them. Forgive the ones that hurt you and forget about it. Laugh, hug, kiss and smile like there's no tomorrow.
Love and light to all of us!

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Acupuncture for the military!

Yes!! It's about time our injured warriors receive the treatment they deserve!
I find it so painful to see these men and women come back from war wounded physically and mentally and docs prescribe nothing but pills! We can help!
This was on today's NPR.org.

Military Pokes Holes In Acupuncture Skeptics' Theory

February 16, 2012


Sgt. Rick Remalia is familiar with pain. He broke his back, hip and pelvis in Afghanistan. Remalia says acupuncture is the first treatment that has really made a difference.
Blake Farmer for NPR

Sgt. Rick Remalia is familiar with pain. He broke his back, hip and pelvis in Afghanistan. Remalia says acupuncture is the first treatment that has really made a difference.

In a fluorescent-lit exam room, Col. Rochelle Wasserman sticks ballpoint-size pins in the ears of Sgt. Rick Remalia.

Remalia broke his back, hip and pelvis during a rollover caused by a pair of rocket-propelled grenades in Afghanistan. He still walks with a cane and suffers from mild traumatic brain injury. Pain is an everyday occurrence, which is where the needles come in.

"I've had a lot of treatment, and this is the first treatment that I've had where I've been like, OK, wow, I've actually seen a really big difference," he says.

'Let's Give It A Shot'

Army doctors have been told by the top brass to rethink their "pill for every ill" approach to treating pain. For the 47,000 troops who've been wounded in Iraq and Afghanistan, some of the new options include less tried and true methods, like massage and chiropractic treatments. The military hopes to win over skeptics, many of them in uniform.

Wasserman is the top doctor for the Warrior Transition Battalion at Fort Campbell, Ky. To her own surprise, she's also now the unit's physician trained to do acupuncture.

"I actually had a demonstration of acupuncture on me, and I'm not a spring chicken," she says, "and it didn't make me 16 again, but it certainly did make me feel better than I had, so I figured, hey ... let's give it a shot with our soldiers here."

In recent years, military doctors have turned to acupuncture in special pain clinics and for troops in battle zones. Last year, the Army surgeon general began making the alternative treatments more widely available.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Stick your tongue out at me! ;)


If you've ever had acupuncture, you know how we acupunks always want to see your tongue. It's inevitable - we will ask you to stick it out. We can't help it! It tells us so much good information about what's happening inside your body!
And if you've ever wondered what it is that I'm looking for, then it's your lucky day! A friend from Seattle posted this great picture on facebook and I had to copy it!
If you want to know which one your tongue looks like, ask me and I'll tell you. Unless of course you are one of those patients of mine ( you know who you are!!) whose tongue tell me absolutely nothing... Yeap, that happens occasionally...
Cheers and stay warm so your tongue doesn't look purple! ;)~