Medical Topics

Choose your medical topic…

Apr 242019
 
YardArt

This is a handout for a brief talk I did in April 2019 at a Butte College yoga class:
Natural Medicine for Digestion, Stress and Trauma. It is only an brief introduction to the subject of easily accessible herbs for digestion, stress and trauma, geared towards the college student or lay person.

Jun 152018
 
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Spring seems to be my favorite time to talk about Chinese Medicine Food Therapy and how one can tailor their diet to the season for healing. In May 2018, I did a lecture on this topic and am posting my notes and recipes here:
Spring: Time to Tame the Liver
Summary Table of Spring Foods discussed
Five Element Chart

Recipes, etc.
Anti-Aging Brain Mix recipe
Raspberry-Lime Aqua Fresca
Ban Lan Gen Chong Ji
Dandelion Flower Syrup
Stir-fried Watercress with Almonds and Ginger
No-Cook Mint Syrup
Mint Syrup (cooking required)
Rose Hips Lemonade (with Hibiscus)

Note:
References for recipes are in the documents themselves.
This is an update to notes in my Spring 2013 Newsletter.

Apr 122018
 
Acup_2010_2Update

Research into the importance of and benefits from an integrated model of health care has been recognized at the federal level for at least 20 years now with the formation the National Institute of Health’s (NIH) National Center of Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM). (NCCAM was renamed to National Center of Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH) in 2014). One important indication of integrative medicine’s increased acceptance is NCCIH’s recent educational campaign geared towards veterans and military personnel discussing such topics such as managing chronic pain, PTSD, stress/anxiety and insomnia using ‘complementary practices’. A recent new analysis (3/17) of a National Health Interview Study, which was conducted by the CDC from 2010 to 2014, shows that veterans are in much more pain on average than non-veterans, and the ‘NCCIH is partnering with the Department of Veterans Affairs and Department of Defense on 13 grants to research military and veteran health with a focus on non-pharmacological approaches to pain and related conditions’. The Veterans Health Administration has used acupuncture and chiropractic treatments for many years now, amongst other complementary practices, such as massage, hypnosis, meditation and yoga. The Veterans Choice program, which began in 2015, also allows veterans to go to local acupuncturists and chiropractors for pain management treatments, with prior authorization, so that a veteran does not have to wait more than 30 days for an appointment or drive more than 40 miles to the closest VA facility. For Butte County residents, that includes every veteran needing such services for pain management, given VA authorization or approval.

Originally published April 2017 in the ‘PARADISE RIDGE Lifestyle & Resource Guide’, a Paradise Ridge Chamber of Commerce & Visitors Bureau publication.

Feb 232017
 

New Guidelines Say Exercise, Yoga, and Acupuncture Beat Medications for Back Pain.

Other article links on this blog about acupuncture and back pain.

Feb 232017
 

Smell Test Outperforms Brain Imaging in Predicting Dementia

Research showing the link between loss of sense of smell and Alzheimer’s disease dates back as far as 2002, with this small study showing a “classification accuracy of 95%”. Sounds like an easy, low-cost tool that the medical community should routinely use to help patients and their families prepare to prevent and/or treat this increasingly common health tragedy!

Please note that natural medicine, especially including nutritional support1 (which is much more comprehensive than just your ‘diet’ and what you food you eat), exercise2, and Traditional Chinese Medicine3, all offer many benefits for preventing dementia.

References:

1 Dr. Daniel Weber’s 2012 Health Research Report on Dementia/Alzheimer’s
2 Expert panel achieved consensus on the following statement: “Regular participation in physical activity is associated with a reduced risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease…”
3 Review Article: Traditional Chinese Medicine for Senile Dementia

A sampling of Traditional Chinese herbal formulas for brain and cognitive function.

Aug 102016
 
CuppingInChengdu_2000

Cupping Therapy is a tool I use almost daily in my office along with acupuncture treatments. I primarily use it on certain types of pain, or for post-stroke syndrome (i.e., paralysis), but it can be used to ‘release the exterior’ (as we say in TCM) for an upper respiratory infection, for COPD (especially phlegm in the lungs), and many other health conditions. Research on Cupping Therapy:
Effectiveness of Cupping Therapy on Chronic Neck and Shoulder Pain

Photo Credit: Sheryl Sanchez, L.Ac., in Chengdu, China, 2000.
P.S. Don’t let the photo frighten you, it is a completely painless technique – it just looks a bit odd at first glance! Most patients love the procedure and especially the results – pain reduction!!

Aug 102016
 
CuppingInChengdu_2000

This is a very good article about the benefits of Cupping Therapy:
Have a Stubborn Injury? Cupping Therapy May Help

This is another article about Cupping Therapy by a teacher and scholar in the field of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) published in the August 2016 of Mayway Corporation’s Newsletter. (Mayway Corporation is the manufacturer of the Plum Flower brand, a premier traditional Chinese herbal line of formulas, which I use in my office). This article is geared towards the TCM professional, but may be of interest to the public:
Ancient Art of Cupping

Photo Credit: Sheryl Sanchez, L.Ac., in Chengdu, China, 2000.

Jul 192016
 
AcupFoot

People’s Pharmacy, a National Public Radio (NPR) program, had their latest weekly show (on 7/14/16) about Acupuncture entitled How Acupuncture Can Help You Overcome Health Challenges. In this particular program, they highlight newly published research on acupuncture benefiting menopausal symptoms such as hot flashes (aka vasomotor symptoms) and answer basic questions about acupuncture.

The mission of People’s Pharmacy is “Empowering you to make wise decisions about your own health, by providing you with essential health information about both medical and alternative treatment options.”1, which is completely in line with my philosophy of healthcare! People’s Pharmacy is one of my favorite NPR programs, and I listen to it on my local NPR station, KCHO, or North State Public Radio.

Reference:
1 http://www.peoplespharmacy.com/about

Jul 062016
 
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Here’s a ‘Simple Marinade’ recipe I use often in the summer to grill vegetables. This recipe includes rosemary, oregano, basil and garlic – culinary spices that are amongst the top 10 antioxidant-containing spices (or herbs!) to use while grilling meat (or vegetables) to protect against creating carcinogenic compounds.1
Simple Marinade

For more information on safe grilling, see this Safe Grilling Guide from the Center for Science in the Public Interest.

1Prevent Grilled Food from Charring Your Health. Includes another yummy sounding marinade – using cherries!

Jun 092016
 

Brief article written in June 2016 about how acupuncture is beginning to play a role in reducing opioid use for chronic pain and also how acupuncture can help with opiate addiction.

One quote from this article regarding one study the US Department of Veterans Affairs conducted:
“By 2011, after employing acupuncture, chiropractic care, massage therapy, biofeedback and hypnosis among other things, the prescription narcotics consumed by the soldiers fell by 88% to 10.2%.”

Read more: Opioid Crisis Tamed Through Ancient Secret?

Jun 092016
 

I am a big proponent of a gluten-free diet due to all the chronic health issues it may cause. Going gluten-free myself years ago helped my health tremendously, and it was specifically atopic dermatitis or eczema that lead me down this road of healing. This is a great article on the subject of gluten in our diets, the damage it causes in our gut, and the many skin diseases it may cause (from one of my favorite blogs on CAM and natural medicine):

Gluten Skin, or the Gut-Skin Axis

For more information on this topic, search my blog for “gluten” for articles I have written on this topic also.

Mar 302016
 

Here’s an article about one of my favorite Chinese herbs:
The Cold Remedy That Actually Works!

Here’s more links about this herb on my blog:
Top Chinese Herb for Immune System Support

Sep 292015
 

Acupuncture Cools Hot Flashes

I see Gabapentin, aka Neurontin, typically prescribed for diabetic peripheral neuropathy, or post-herpetic neuralgia (nerve pain), or more so nowadays, any type of pain. Anyhow, it has also been prescribed by some doctors to relieve the hot flashes associated with menopause (although this use was advised against by the FDA in 2013 ). Anyhow, this is another study showing how acupuncture will benefit hot flashes. In this research, acupuncture was used specifically on patients who had “treatment-related hot flashes”. This means that patients were taking pharmaceutical medications such as Tamoxifen and Arimidex (because they were diagnosed with Estrogen-Receptor Positive (ER-Positive) breast cancer), which results in hot flashes.

NOTE: See that the direct link to the MedScape article above does not work unless you log into MedScape unfortunately. But you can search for the title above on MedScape and find the article easily (or logging in anyway will take you directly to the article).

Aug 202015
 

Just started carrying this product in my office: Nutricology’s Caricol® Papaya Concentrate. I have had many patients throughout the years who have had great results using papaya, or its main active ingredient, papain for digestive complaints. Papain is a known digestive enyzme, and is in many natural digestive enzyme products nowadays (including another product I have carried for years).

So this specific product caught my attention, because:
1. It is a liquid, papaya concentrate “made from the pulp of certified organic, GMO-free, tree-ripened papaya”
2. The papain is “naturally concentrated by means of a propriety production process which originated at the Lotus Buddhist Monastery, Big Island, Hawaii”, and
3. The company notes on the box that “a portion of the proceeds from your purchase will be donated to the monastery” that originated this process.

After learning all this, I thought this is a product I can get behind! For specific details on this product, including research relating to its effects on IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome), constipation and diarrhea, see: Caricol.com. More information can be found at the distributor’s site, Nutricology.

Other interesting info about papain is that it has been used for years in meat tenderizer products, was sold in topical preparations in the past for wound debridement (removing dead tissue)1, and has been used as a home remedy for insect bites and stings2.

References
1: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Papain
2: http://www.peoplespharmacy.com/2010/08/02/meat-tenderizer-for-pain-of-sting”

Jul 292015
 

The latest issue (July 2015) of Dr. Julian Whitaker’s Health and Healing Newsletter (article not available online) has an article about back pain. It discusses the pros and cons of painkillers, and points out that getting an MRI or CT scan often times becomes a “Gateway to Surgery”. He suggests “waiting until you’ve given conservative treatment a chance to work”. He then has a nice summary of modalities to try for “Safe, Lasting Pain Relief”. This list includes Acupuncture, “one of the best-studied alternative therapies for pain relief”, amongst Stem Cell Therapy, Prolotherapy, High-Intensity Laser, Chiropractic, and Supplements (“such as curcumin, boswellia, omega-3 fatty acids, UC-II (type II collagen), bromelain, astaxanthin and ginger”).

I must note that three of these supplements or herbal remedies are from Traditional Chinese Medicine herbal medicine: curcumin, boswellia and ginger! I also just happen to carry a great arthritis herbal formula (patients love the results they have!) and amongst other ingredients, it has curcumin, boswellia and collagen. (I cannot advertise the product or its price, since the product is sold only by qualified health care professionals).

Dr. Whitaker also has on his website a nice article highlighting the many conditions Acupuncture Benefits, last updated in August 2014.

Oct 062014
 
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This is an important read for everyone about the dangers of vaccinations – I just happened to come across this article in 2012 in an Explore journal article. Explore is a “Journal of Science and Healing”, which has a focus on “scientific principles behind, and applications of, evidence-based healing practices”, and is edited by Larry Dossey.

This article is unavailable on their website without registering and paying for their content (as of 10/14), but I finally found it reprinted here:
Health Beyond Vaccines, by Dr. Garry Gordon.