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Getting The Point: The Benefits Of Acupuncture

Acupuncture is one of the oldest healing practices in the world, dating back at least 3,000 years as one of the central modalities of acupuncturetraditional Chinese medicine.  In comparison, modern or Western medicine has been practiced for only about 200 years.

Acupuncture was first recorded in the  Huangdi Neijing (Yellow Emperor’s Classic of Internal Medicine), considered to be the oldest Chinese medical textbook, which most scholars believe was compiled between the third and first centuries BCE.  Traditional Chinese medicine, which encompasses many different practices, is rooted in the ancient philosophy of Taoism whose origins may be traced more than 5,000 years in the past. As part of traditional Chinese medicine, the main goal of acupuncture is to restore and maintain health through the stimulation of specific points on the body. Simply put, acupuncture involves the insertion of very fine needles on the body’s surface in order to influence physiological functioning of the body.  The most common practice of acupuncture is for the relief or treatment of moderate to severe pain, which can originate from various points in the body.

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The Holistic Approach: Doctor’s Of Osteopathic Medicine

Most people have heard of or seen the initials D.O., but most do not know what they mean or understand the difference between a Holistic MedicineD.O. (Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine) and M.D. (Medical Doctor).  Both are fully qualified doctors licensed to prescribe medication and perform surgery, both complete four years of medical education, both obtain medical education through internships, residencies, and fellowships, and both can practice in any specialty of medicine.

The biggest difference between a D.O. and an M.D. lies in their perception of the human organism and its health or lack thereof.  An M.D. has been trained to treat you for a specific symptom or illness, and views symptoms in disparate parts of the body as separate, largely unrelated disease states.  The D.O., on the other hand, is trained to view your body as an integrated whole as it relates to your health and wellbeing.  D.O.’s receive an additional 300-500 hours of training in the musculoskeletal system, which is the body’s interconnected system of muscles, bones, and nerves that makes up two thirds of your body mass.  This gives the D.O. knowledge and training to better understand how one part of your body can affect many other parts, thus finding the cause of illness, rather than merely treating the symptom or specific illness.  A good example of this would be the case of the narrowing of your nerve pathway in your lower back affecting your hips, knees, ankles, and even causing pain in your toes.  Most medical doctors would focus on the leg pain as a discrete event and likely prescribe painkillers and anti-inflammatories. A D.O. would focus on what is causing the leg pain.

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Inflammation: Is It Killing You?

Inflammation is impossible to escape, as it is a normal, natural part of the healing process; without it injuries and wounds great or Inflammationsmall would never heal. When inflammation occurs, chemicals from the body’s white blood cells are released into the blood or affected tissues in an attempt to rid the body of foreign substances.  Some of the chemicals cause leakage of fluid into the tissues, resulting in swelling. The inflammatory response is basically your body’s way of releasing free radicals to scavenge damaged tissues in order for your body to begin to repair itself.  The common physiological symptoms include swelling, redness, heat at the site, lack of a range of motion of affected body part, and usually increased pain.  After the primary healing takes place the excess free radicals produced during the immune response are neutralized by anti-oxidants or free electrons in the body.

Inflammation can be separated into two distinct categories: acute and chronic.  Acute inflammation is the body’s normal protective response to an injury, irritation, or surgery. This natural defense process brings increased blood flow to the area, resulting in an accumulation of fluid.  The common medical advice in treating acute inflammation is RICE therapy, which stands for RestIceCompression, and Elevation.

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Getting Grounded: The Natural Way To Healing

You may or may not have heard of the practice called grounding, or earthing, which has become popular in the holistic health world earthing grounding bookrecently.  I had previously heard of grounding, but was unsure what it was.  It definitely sounded a little strange at first until I met a couple of people who have used some of the electronic grounding products that are now available, and experienced positive results.  Of course my curiosity and my experimental nature urged me to look deeper and see what this grounding thing was all about.

My investigations began with watching a couple of videos by David Wolfe, who is considered one of the world’s top authorities on natural health, beauty, nutrition, herbalism, chocolate, and organic superfoods.  I must admit that after watching the videos by Wolfe on grounding the concepts definitely started to make sense to me, but I’m always cautious with these supposedly groundbreaking natural remedies. Sometimes it is hard to filter out the junk from the truly good products.  I had to look into Wolfe’s background as he can sometimes come off as a spiritual hippie huckster, but I have always been impressed with his videos and the scope of his knowledge.  I discovered that Mr. Wolfe’s accomplishments are impressive, and include a master’s degree in nutrition, and a background in science and mechanical engineering.

So what is grounding?  In the shortest explanation, being grounded means being electrically connected to the earth.

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