Chinese New Year 2020 Rat

Chinese New Year 2020: Year of The Rat

If you follow the 12-year cycle of the Chinese Animal Zodiac (Sheng Xiao), then you probably know that Saturday, January 25th, is a special day. It marks the first day of the Lunar New Year and 2020 will be celebrated as the Year of the Rat. The Rat represents “the beginning of a new day” and is symbolic of wisdom and prosperity. Although 2020 is slated to be a fairly good year for those who were born under this sign, Rats should also be prepared to face some challenges.

Personality and Character Traits of The Rat

Most Rats enjoy a quiet lifestyle and prefer to keep drama to a minimum. They are well-liked by others due to their quick wit, kind nature, and ability to sense the emotions of those around them.

Rats are extremely creative and often pursue careers as writers and artists. Their resourcefulness, problem-solving skills, and attention to detail might also lead them into other fields of study, such as engineering and architecture.

Positive attributes aside, Rats tend be rather stubborn and could be better at expressing themselves (their choice of words might even cause offense). Rats often struggle to find the courage to go after what they want, causing them to miss out on amazing opportunities.

While Rats are great at building nest eggs, they aren’t so great at sharing their wealth with others. They would rather splurge on things they don’t need than make risky personal loans to friends or loved ones.

Rats and Vitality

Although Rats tire easily and are susceptible to the common cold and changes in temperature, they usually live long lives. They are also known for their impressive reproductive capabilities! (Many couples gladly offer prayers to the Rat when trying to conceive.)

Unlike other zodiac animals, such as the Pig, Rats have a tendency to eat too little. They can get distracted and actually forget to eat. They need to make regular meals a priority. Rats should also clear room in their schedule for exercise and avoid both alcohol and cigarettes if they want to keep their health goals on track.

Outlook for The Rat in 2020

  • Expect to do well, career-wise. You will be acknowledged and rewarded for your efforts in the workplace.
  • Your finances will be in great shape for most of the year, but you should be careful about over-spending!
  • Keep tabs on your well-being to avoid illness. (Prescription: Eat right, eat often, and get plenty of sleep!)
  • The reproductive prowess of the Rat makes 2020 an especially good year to procreate (and keep in mind that acupuncture can help with fertility issues). Unfortunately, however, you won’t see much activity in the romance department. If you are single and looking for a new relationship, you might want to put that particular quest on the back burner until 2021. If you are already married or in a committed relationship, be vigilant about nurturing the bond you share with your partner and keep the lines of communication open!

Wishing everyone health, wealth and stability as we move toward embracing the Year of the Rat!

Jill Doan, L.Ac.

Resources:

https://chinesenewyear.net/

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/0/chinese-new-year-2020-when-date-what-meaning-rats-zodiac/

Tea and Brain Health Benefits

Today is National Hot Tea Day, and there are lots of reasons to celebrate! You may already be familiar with the many health benefits associated with tea consumption. Tea provides valuable antioxidants and is known for treating insomnia and digestive issues, as well as reducing stress. Research also suggests that tea may help lower blood pressure, prevent bone loss, and boost the immune system.

Now we have another reason to celebrate National Hot Tea Day: drinking oolong, black, or green tea can improve our cognitive function!

Results from a recent study performed at the National University of Singapore (in conjunction with the University of Essex and University of Cambridge) indicate that “drinking tea regularly has a protective effect against age-related decline in brain organisation”.

In order to better understand the positive influence of tea consumption on brain health, the research team at NUS suggests we think of it this way:

“Take the analogy of road traffic as an example–consider brain regions as destinations, while the connections between brain regions are roads. When a road system is better organised, the movement of vehicles and passengers is more efficient and uses less resources. Similarly, when the connections between brain regions are more structured, information processing can be performed more efficiently…”

Whether you are already a tea-enthusiast or someone who has just started to navigate the world of tea and you want to explore its many health benefits, this is great news! Let’s all grab one more cup for the road!

Resources

http://www.teausa.com/14521/brewing-tea

https://worldteanews.com/

Winter Solstice DhongZhi

Acupuncture for Diabetes

Xi Gua

Xi Gua, Fructus Citrulli, Watermelon

This well-known and beloved fruit known by many names has been consumed by millions of people across the globe for centuries. Archeologists have discovered that the first documented watermelon harvest was in Ancient Egypt over 5,000 years ago!

You are probably aware of the cultural significance of watermelon, especially living in America. However, you may be unaware of the actual, proven health benefits that come from this refreshing treat.

Xi Gua

Known in Mandarin as Xi Gua, this fruit has a long history with Traditional Chinese Medicine. In TCM, the fruit, rind, and seeds are all used to benefit patients suffering from a variety of issues. It effects the spleen and stomach meridians.

In China, the rinds are cooked or pickled and consumed as a tasty treat!

Hydrating Properties

This time of year it is especially important to make sure you are staying hydrated. The most notable of these benefits may be the hydrating properties of watermelon. In fact, the high water content of this fruit (about 92%) makes it known as a great option for staying cool in hot summer heat!

Full of nutrients and water, eating this fruit is a great way to remain hydrated and feel full without actually consuming a large volume of food. This makes it ideal for draining summer activities.

What about the seeds?

The seeds are often ground up and taken in combination with other herbs. These seeds are known to work as a diarrhetic, and may even help soothe Urinary Tract Infections. Watermelon is a pretty amazing fruit!

Likewise, who doesn’t love a good watermelon seed spitting contest?

More!

As if that wasn’t impressive enough, there is evidence to suggest that this magical fruit may even help prevent cancer and heart disease!

Watermelon makes you beautiful! In other words, due to it’s hydrating and nutritious properties, watermelon is great for skin and hair. Who doesn’t want that extra shine?

A few more of the many benefits linked to this wonder fruit are inflammation, muscle soreness, and digestion help.

Hungry yet?

In conclusion, check out the links down below for some more in-depth information, then go to your local market and pick up a watermelon!

Here you can find more tips regarding Taking Care of your Body during the hot summer months.

Resources

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4296437/

https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/watermelon-health-benefits#section9

https://www.acupuncturetoday.com/herbcentral/watermelon.php

Electroacupuncture Explained

 

Electroacupuncture is the specialized version of traditional acupuncture that involves running a small electrical current through the pre-placed needles. This is done in hopes of stimulating blood flow and achieving balance throughout the body. Today, we’ll explore the many benefits and uses to this newer form of TCM.

 

Invented by Chinese doctor Tang She-Cheng in 1937, it has a much shorter history in relation to the nearly 2,500 years of manual acupuncture. As a result, the practice is less widely in utilization, but does have proven benefits.

HOW DOES IT WORK?

 

So, how does it work? While it can seem scary initially, the principles are actually quite simple, and in essence, similar to manual acupuncture. Traditionally, an acupuncturist would place one needle per meridian point, and then manually stimulate the body using that needle and their hands. However, in electroacupuncture, two needles are placed per meridian point and an electrical machine is connected to these needles which sends a current back and forth, and stimulates the meridian point between. 

In electroacupuncture, two needles are inserted per meridian point, unlike traditional Chinese acupuncture.

WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS?

Some people may be understandably wary about hooking their body up to an electrical current, so what is the point? According to multiple scientific studies, electroacupuncture has some pretty significant benefits, even when compared to the time-tested standard. Some specific benefits of this variation include increased efficacy in patients with arthritis and osteoarthritis. Likewise, chemo-therapy related nausea and other chronic stress issues have been found to be reduced by this method. Specifically nerve-related issues that benefit from electrical stimulation. 

 

For example, study done by researchers at Georgetown University found that the applied use of electroacupuncture can reduce physical symptoms of chronic stress quite dramatically. Furthermore, this method can lower production stress hormones, and can be an effective addition to treatments for various conditions.

In conclusion, there are many benefits to this variation of practice, certain groups are at a higher risk for complications. If you are elderly, pregnant, have a pacemaker, other heart-related issues, or experience seizures you should not attempt electroacupuncture.

WHAT DO YOU THINK?

WOULD YOU TRY ELECTROACUPUNCTURE THERAPY?

Unfamiliar with traditional acupuncture benefits? Check some out here!

Sources

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3947586/

https://www.healthline.com/health/electroacupuncture#how-it-works

 

Your Gut is Compromised!

YOUR GUT IS COMPROMISED!

Whether you think it is or not, it’s true. Your gut is being compromised every single day. It doesn’t matter if you have physical symptoms or not.  It’s just the reality of the world we live in today. More than any other time in history, we are exposed – no we are bombarded – with harmful chemicals on a daily basis.

And here’s something even scarier. According to a 2013 New York Times article, “Think Those Chemicals Have Been Tested?” by Ian Urbina states,

“MANY Americans assume that the chemicals in their shampoos, detergents and other consumer products have been thoroughly tested and proved to be safe. This assumption is wrong. Unlike pharmaceuticals or pesticides, industrial chemicals do not have to be tested before they are put on the market.”

Another major risk everyone is susceptible to is Leaky Gut Syndrome, which is when certain tiny particles that should never be able to enter your bloodstream start to make their way through. Leaky gut can be caused by the bombardment of chemicals and even certain foods, such as nightshades. Leaky gut syndrome often results in acute inflammation and your immune response over-performing, leading to chronic inflammation.

Over time all these attacks on your gut often result in toxic overload and a bacterial imbalance in your gut.

What can help combat this reality we face today? PROBIOTICS.

Probiotics bring your gut into balance. Potential benefits of probiotics have been seen in the treatment or prevention of

  • Diarrhea
  • Reduce symptoms of common digestive issues such as ibs, irritable bowel syndrome, ulcerative colitis, and crohn’s disease
  • Lower cholesterol
  • Pylori (the cause of ulcers)
  • Vaginal infections
  • Urinary tract infections
  • Recurrence of bladder cancer
  • Infection of the digestive tract caused by clostridium difficile
  • Eczema in children

At To the Point Acupuncture we sell several kinds of Pure Encapsulation Probiotics. Ask Jill which Probiotic product would help combat your digestive issues, maintain your gut health, or augment your acupuncture treatment.

 

 

 

 

 

Spring Cleaning your home naturally

Spring cleaning is a good way to air out your house, but it shouldn’t mean inhaling toxic chemicals or fumes. It is important to clean your home on a regular basis to reduce the presence of common indoor pollutants such as dust, mold, and pet dander. Unfortunately, most common cleaning products contain dangerous or questionable chemicals.

Here’s a few ideas to clean your house naturally:

  1. Air Freshener: Drop one tablespoon of baking soda into a small spray bottle and add in a few drops of your favorite essential oil to scent the air freshener. Fill the rest of the spray bottle with water. Now spring is really in the air!
  2. Windows: Mix one-part white vinegar with four parts water. Add lemon juice for a citrusy smell. Lemon juice will also provide extra grease-cutting power. Spray onto the mirror or window, and scrub off with sponge or rag.
  3. Microwave: Combine 1 cup of water and 1/4 cup of white vinegar to a microwave safe bowl. Microwave for 5 minutes. Keep the bowl in your microwave for an additional 1-2 minutes more to allow the steam to really build up. Simply wipe down the inside with a rag.
  4. Refrigerator: Mix a ½ cup of baking soda to some hot water. Dip a rag in the mixture and use it to scrub down your refrigerator.
  5. Oven: Sprinkle a cup or more of baking soda over the bottom of the oven, then cover the baking soda with enough water to make a thick paste. Let the mixture set overnight. The next morning, the grease will be easy to wipe up because the grime will have loosened. When you have cleaned up the worst of the mess, dab a bit of dish detergent or soap on a sponge, and wash the remaining residue from the oven.
  6. Toilet: Mix 1 cup of Borax, 1 cup of Vinegar, 1 cup of hot water, 10 drops lemon essential oil and 10 drops of pine essential oil. Mix into the bowl together and let sit overnight. Brush the bowl in the morning and flush.
  7. Bedding/Mattress: Don’t forget your bedding! Mix 2 cups baking soda with 10 drops of your favorite essential oils and brush into your mattress. Let sit for 30 minutes before vacuuming up.

General cleaners:

  • A 50/50 vinegar/water solution will clean tile, counters, cabinet fronts and soap scum in the shower.
  • A baking soda and water paste will clean stuck on gunk in the shower and tub (use vinegar instead of water for really tough stains)
  • For grout, sprinkle baking soda on the floor and spray with undiluted hydrogen peroxide and scrub with a gentle toothbrush.

In one afternoon, you can start to feel better about the space you live in without using toxic chemicals!

 

Acupuncture for Allergies

Spring means warm weather, blooming flowers, and outdoor activities for most people. For those suffering from allergies, it means the return of familiar but unwelcome symptoms such as itchy eyes, runny nose, sinus congestion and coughing.

Acupuncture is very effective in treating allergy symptoms and will also help boost your immune system. Chinese herbs can be taken in parallel to keep symptoms from re-occurring. Unlike antihistamines and other OTC medications for allergies-there are no side effects to Chinese herbs and your Acupuncturist will select an herb for your particular symptoms/constitution.

 

Here are a few home remedies to help you get through the season:

  1. Acupressure-the image below details where you should apply pressure along your sinuses. In most cases-stimulating the points yourself isn’t a direct substitute for receiving acupuncture treatment however applying pressure on the points below can delay the onset of your symptoms and minimize the severity of them as well.

 

  1. Use a Saline rinse/Neti-pot to irrigate your nasal cavity and clean out any mucus/debris
  2. Eliminate mucus producing foods from your diet such as dairy and sugar
  3. Take a daily tablespoon of locally produced honey
  4. Stay hydrated-drink plenty of water throughout the day

To learn more or to schedule an appointment, contact us at 919 621-3363 or at To The Point Acupuncture