Monthly Archives: March 2018

Acupuncture for Allergies

Many of us are looking forward to the spring weather to come, but some of you are not so happy to see the buds coming out on those trees! All of those beautiful spring blossoms trigger allergies.
Spring and summer allergies are only a few of the nasties that make us so uncomfortable. For some it is the mold that has been hiding under the snow all winter. For others it is grass, ragweed, pets etc. but the result is the same; you have to choose between being stuffy, itchy, wheezing and snivelly, or taking pills that have other side-effects.
I have suffered from spring allergies myself for most of my adult life, but now I have a quick fix and a prevention method that I can share with others.
I have my magic needles that clear the sinuses and ease my itchy throat or watery eyes!
Many of my acupuncture clients come in for allergy treatment and prevention. I have several success stories to share and there are several links you can also take a peek at here:

Some Turning to Acupuncture for Relief, CBS Chicago

How Does Acupuncture Work for Allergies?, E How Health

Acupuncture not only opens up the passages in the body to relieve the congestion, it helps to build your energy and stimulate your immune system, so that future seasons will be less stressful, or you may even be free of your allergies completely.
Now for the success stories!
My allergies may creep up in the early spring, but one or two acupuncture sessions usually has me fixed up for the whole season. No more eye drops and no more anti-histamines for me.
I have treated young children with spring and summer allergies. Kids are sometimes not crazy about needles, so I can do acupressure or laser acupuncture on them. Kids are easier to treat and don’t require as much intervention as their bodies haven’t had quite as long to form bad habits.
A client of mine from a few years ago had been suffering with hay fever for her whole life. She found immediate and lasting relief from her symptoms after only one treatment!
Another client of mine had been suffering with severe allergies to just about anything you could name. All animals, dust, mold, pollen, grass, weeds etc. Everything set her off. She had been to allergy specialists her whole life. She got shots once a month, plus took anti-histamines every day for over 20 years just to survive.
We did acupuncture treatments once a week for 8 weeks, then every 2 weeks for another 8 weeks. Within the first month she was able to reduce her allergy pills from 3 or 4 a day to 3 or 4 a week! After the first few months she was actually able to visit friends with pets and just take a single allergy pill. This was a huge change and a new-found freedom for her as she had always had to stay away from places where there were animals.
After 4 months of treatment she had an appointment with her allergy specialist for testing. They couldn’t figure out how over 50% of her life long allergies had suddenly vanished!
These are just a few success stories. Wouldn’t you like to have your own success story to share?
If you suffer from severe or long-standing allergies, you will require more treatments than someone with less severe allergies, but most people find at least some relief after the first few visits. Get in touch if you would like to learn more about treating your allergies and remember that prevention is the best method. Try to get in to see me before your usual allergy season starts and you may find yourself becoming a spring lover after all!

No Treadmill – No Problem


Guest Blog by Jason Lewis
of

Strongwell.org

info@strongwell.org

 No treadmill, no problem: Creative ways to rev up your fitness routine without equipment

You don’t have to invest thousands of dollars into home exercise equipment to get a good workout without hitting the gym. All it takes is a little creativity and the desire to get fit. Here are a non-equipment exercises that will help you achieve your fitness.

Mountain climbers

If you can plank, you can work your abs, legs and arms with a simple exercise known as mountain climbers. Start in a full push-up position and alternate leg to leg with a climbing action. Shape provides a great GIF that shows you how it’s done.

Walking the dog

Although it might sound like an old yo-yo trick, we mean it literally. Taking your dog for a walk can burn hundreds of calories an hour while enhancing your cardiovascular function and lower body strength. If you’re a dog person, you can even earn a little extra income by becoming a dog walker and using your friends’ and neighbors’ animals as your own personal workout companions.

Hiking

When most people think hiking, they tend to think rugged mountain terrain and steep inclines. But you can also hike on paved trails in your local nature preserve. Like walking, you’ll burn lots of calories but you’ll also likely be exposed to a gentle incline, which can make your workout a bit more challenging. As an added bonus, being in nature is a proven mood booster that may encourage you to go further and do more each time you hit the trail.

No equipment circuit training

Believe it or not, you can get an effective full body circuit workout without stepping foot into a gym. Buzzfeed highlights several options, each of which can be modified and tailored to your fitness level. One of the easiest includes a series of push-ups, jumping jacks, lunges and walkouts and takes about three minutes each cycle.

Dancing

You’ve likely never seen an overweight or under-fit dancer. There’s good reason for that. Dancing is, according to Time, the “best thing you can do for your body.” Not only is it a great workout, but dancing also encourages social bonds and can foster intimate relationships when dances are performed with a partner.

Swimming

If you have access to a pool or a lake, swimming is an exercise that should not be overlooked. Swimming is an especially good workout if you can’t handle high-impact exercises, as it doesn’t put stress on your joints. You’d be hard-pressed to find another exercise that firms and tightens as well as a dip in the pool.

Yardwork

If you don’t have access to a weight bench or cardiovascular equipment, you may as well put your time to good use. Landscaping and performing general lawn maintenance gets your body moving and also provides benefits for your heart and lungs. Gardening can burn up to 250 calories, and you’ll reap delicious and healthy rewards at the end of summer.

Food and self-care

If you’re serious about jumpstarting your fitness routine, you’ll also need to pay attention to your overall health. This includes your nutrition and ways you take care of yourself when you aren’t working out. Strive for a variety of different fruits and vegetables each day — most meals should be centered around these items instead of meat, bread or starches. You’ll also need to take measures to reduce stress, which will help you stay focused on your health goals. Get a massage, indulge in an acupuncture session or take a time out once a week to enjoy a good movie with your favorite healthy snack.

Getting healthy and fit doesn’t have to require a huge investment of time or money. From nature trails to the family pet, the world is your gym and is all the equipment you’ll ever need.

Image via Pixabay

 

Acupuncture and Headaches

This article shows some more studies supporting acupuncture for headaches. Acupuncture can reduce the incidence and the severity of headaches in most cases. In my practice, I always focus on the whole health of the person, so if you come in with headaches or with any other issues, we will be working to balance your whole system. Here is an excerpt from the article for you to check out!

<em>”Forty-seven percent of patients who received acupuncture reported a decrease in the number of headache days by at least half, compared with 16 percent of patients in the control groups.”read more….

MRI Mapping Acupuncture Points

New research is popping up all the time on how acupuncture really works. I am constantly astounded by what I do. Why is it that a point on your foot helps with your eyes? Or a point on your leg helps with migraines or with shoulder pain? How did they know, 4000 years ago that these points would benefit a person in such specific ways?

Now that we have MRI technology, we are beginning to map out the effects of different therapies on different parts of the body and the brain. The brain has a very unique relationship to acupuncture, as different areas of the brain are effected by different acupuncture points. We can now perform acupuncture while a person is having an MRI done, and see the areas of the brain that are activated by the needles. The research shows that traditional acupuncture points light up these areas, but sham acupuncture points do not. This helps to rule out the placebo effect that is so commonly quoted by those who don’t believe in the therapy. The article below examines the findings on some of the acupuncture points that have been tested so far.

If you are not an acupuncturist, you might not completely follow what they are referring to, but it is still a really cool read when you connect the dots!

Here is an excerpt:

New MRI research concludes that needling acupuncture points causes specific brain patterns associated with the treatment of specific diseases. Investigators compared two acupuncture points on the foot with a nearby sham acupuncture point. They discovered that the true acupuncture points consistently elicited specific brain responses in regions associated with their Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) medical indications and functions for therapeutic effects. – See more at: http://www.healthcmi.com/acupuncturist-news-online/764-mrilr4st44#sthash.JXNq9bQo.dpuf

New MRI research concludes that needling acupuncture points causes specific brain patterns associated with the treatment of specific diseases. Investigators compared two acupuncture points on the foot with a nearby sham acupuncture point. They discovered that the true acupuncture points consistently elicited specific brain responses in regions associated with their Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) medical indications and functions for therapeutic effects. – See more at: http://www.healthcmi.com/acupuncturist-news-online/764-mrilr4st44#sthash.JXNq9bQo.dpuf

New MRI research concludes that needling acupuncture points causes specific brain patterns associated with the treatment of specific diseases. Investigators compared two acupuncture points on the foot with a nearby sham acupuncture point. They discovered that the true acupuncture points consistently elicited specific brain responses in regions associated with their Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) medical indications and functions for therapeutic effects. – See more at: http://www.healthcmi.com/acupuncturist-news-online/764-mrilr4st44#sthash.JXNq9bQo.dpuf

“New MRI research concludes that needling acupuncture points causes specific brain patterns associated with the treatment of specific diseases. Investigators compared two acupuncture points on the foot with a nearby sham acupuncture point. They discovered that the true acupuncture points consistently elicited specific brain responses in regions associated with their Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) medical indications and functions for therapeutic effects.’ – See more at HERE

Acupuncture Studies. There are lots!

There are some very indepth studies going on around the world that are provingthe effectiveness of acupuncture.

The article below explains.

“For chronic pain, in the largest study of its kind to date, 454,920 patients were treated with acupuncture for headache, low back pain, and/or osteoarthritis in an open pragmatic trial. Effectiveness was rated as marked or moderate in 76% of cases by the 8,727 treating physicians.19 In a 2-year retroactive survey of over 89,000 patients published in 2016, 93% of patients said that their acupuncturist had been successful in treating their musculoskeletal pain.20

A meta-analysis of 17,922 patients from randomized trials concluded, “Acupuncture is effective for the treatment of chronic pain and is therefore a reasonable referral option. Significant differences between true and sham acupuncture indicate that acupuncture is more than a placebo.”21 A follow up study with this data looking at long-term pain relief, found that the benefits of acupuncture persisted 12 months after treatment ended.22

Read on….”

 

Acupuncture Analysis for Pain Relief

We are beginning to see study results that prove the effectiveness of acupuncture for pain. Even though acupuncture has been helping people with their pain for thousands of years all over the world, it has taken science a while to catch up and acknowledge the benefits.

My first experience with acupuncture was for back pain. Everyone who has had that awful feeling of pulling a back muscle knows how agonizing it can be. You can end up flat on your back in bed for weeks, and that was the experience I had the first couple of times I put my back out.

With the acupuncture, I was back on my feet and back to work in just a couple of days instead of a couple of weeks. Plus, I didn’t have to take all of those heavy drugs that knocked me out. I was hooked. Or poked I guess! Here I am several years down the road as an acupuncturist myself. I am still fascinated every day when I see what this gentle healing tool can do for people.

Below is an article from the New York Times about how several scientific studies were analyzed over 6 years to scrutinize how effective acupuncture is for pain.

“A new study of acupuncture — the most rigorous and detailed analysis of the treatment to date — found that it can ease migraines and arthritis and other forms of chronic pain.

The findings provide strong scientific support for an age-old therapy used by an estimated three million Americans each year. Though acupuncture has been studied for decades, the body of medical research on it has been mixed and mired to some extent by small and poor-quality studies. Financed by the National Institutes of Health and carried out over about half a decade, the new research was a detailed analysis of earlier research that involved data on nearly 18,000 patients.” Keep reading here….

Women’s Health- Acupuncture Can Help!

Researchers are finally catching up with what acupuncturists have known for thousands of years.

Acupuncture is an effective and safe treatment for women’s health issues. I remember being completely amazed myself when acupuncture alleviated menstrual pain that I had been suffering from for years. All the medical community could offer me were drugs that knocked me out, or surgery. I didn’t want to have a hysterectomy in my 30’s!

When I saw an acupuncturist for only 4 or 5 treatments, my menstrual pain pretty much disappeared! Personal experience lead me to study acupuncture so that I could help others. I am still really frustrated when I hear about women who suffer their whole lives with hormonal imbalances that affect their health. It is so unnecessary to be in pain!

Now I am in my menopausal years and the relief I get from hot flashes, brain fog, sleeplessness and aches and pains is amazing. I wish everyone knew about this stuff!

This blog post by Acupuncture Blog Chicago explores several recent studies that show how acupuncture is effective in helping women who have had breast cancer, polycystic ovarian syndrome, hot flashes and infertility. Read more here…

 

Indegestion and Acupuncture

For temporary relief from indigestion and constipation, sure, you can take an over-the-counter pill, and yes, there are prescriptions available too.

They can provide temporary relief of your symptoms. They can help with the gas, heart-burn, bloating, cramping, and diarrhea, but they are only temporary. If your condition is chronic, (meaning it has been going on for more than a couple of weeks), you may need to look into going a little deeper than just popping a pill.

We all know that diet and activity are very important in maintaining your digestive health. We could probably all do better in that department couldn’t we?

There is more you can do to help balance your digestion and relieve your symptoms. Acupuncture works wonders with almost all digestive problems. It can be combined with other therapies, or you can try needle-free therapies on their own. An acupuncturist can also offer abdominal cupping therapy to help relieve gas and constipation.

It is always advised that a person also see their medical doctor to rule out any complications, but if you are suffering and looking for relief, you owe it to yourself to see an acupuncturist. Many people have great success with as little as 3 to 4 treatments.

Acupuncturists can do much more than just poke needles into people!

Acupuncture for Knee Pain

Knee pain is one of the most common reasons why people seek acupuncture.

If you’ve every had a sore knee, you know how debilitating it can be. You can’t sit down, you can’t stand up, you can’t walk it out, and you might not be able to sleep through the night either.

Anti-inflammatory drugs can help, but if you’re like most people, you are worried about the long-term effects of taking so many medications.

I am very honest with my clients. I tell them that what I do, will help to reduce inflammation, improve energy flow and circulation,improve range of motion and reduce pain. If you have cartilage damage or bone damage, I am not going to be able to take that away. I always advise that you seek the advice of a medical doctor about what to do next with your knee pain. With their help, you can decide if you are able to continue with exercise and complimentary health practices, or if you should think about further medical treatment.

I have several clients who come for acupuncture treatment to help ease their symptoms while awaiting surgery. It can take months to wait for arthroscopic surgery or for a knee replacement, so acupuncture is a great way to help you to feel better and stay in the best shape you can be in while waiting for surgery, and for helping to speed your recovery after surgery.

Yes, Acupuncture Points Do Exist

acupuncture needlesSceptics of acupuncture will tell you that acupuncture points are imaginary spots that acupuncturists have made up, but we know better. Over time, science is slowly starting to back up the practice of acupuncture.

I like to ask people why millions of people in China and other eastern countries would participate in such a mass scam for thousands of years if they didn’t find the therapy was helpful, but that is just the common sense I was raised with. If something works; do it. If it doesn’t; don’t. That is enough for me.

I do also like to see the results of these studies. If you compared studies on the efficacy and safety of acupuncture to the efficacy and safety of drugs and surgery, you would probably find that acupuncture out-performs many of the allopathic treatments people have been undergoing for the last few decades. Remember, acupuncture has been in use for thousands of years. Modern medicine is a baby by comparison. I don’t want to slam modern medicine because I am truly thankful that it exists. In an emergency or for major health issues, of course you want a medical doctor.  I am constantly amazed by how our medical system is advancing, but in some cases, the side-effects outweigh the benefits, and looking for a less invasive therapy, like acupuncture, may be the answer.

The diagnostic capabilities of our medical system are amazing. In fact, it is the diagnostic technology we have today that is helping to confirm the existence of acupuncture points.

A skilled acupuncturist can locate your acupoints and even use them to aid in the diagnosis of imbalances in the body. For example, people are often surprised when I ask them if they have had bloating or gas by palpating a point on their leg, or if they are having PMS symptoms by touching their ankles. Some acupoints will be blocked, bumpy or overly full when certain discomforts are present in the body. That is why I am not surprised to read the article below, which shows that CT scans are verifying that the tissue at acupuncture points is different than other tissue. The microvascular density is more concentrated at the sites of acupuncture points. Read on below:

“In this study published in the Journal of Electron Spectroscopy and Related Phenomena, researchers used in-line phase contrast CT imaging with synchrotron radiation on both non-acupuncture points and acupuncture points.

The CT scans revealed clear distinctions between the non-acupuncture point and acupuncture point anatomical structures. Read more here…”

Who Is Bonnie?

Bonnie Adam is a Registered Acupuncturist, a cupping therapist and a Reiki Master and intuitive healer. She also teaches a variety of workshops including Reiki and cupping therapy.

"Follow your healing pathway."

More about Bonnie.

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Check out Bonnie's upcoming classes. Workshops are in Guelph, Ontario, but Bonnie may be able to travel to your area to teach.

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