Congratulations to PCOM alumna Victoria Risovanny, who was interviewed by Heather Lane on FOX5 yesterday! Victoria practices acupuncture at the Sewall Healthy Living Center at Sharp Coronado. Watch the segment here.
Summer, the most Yang time of year, is finally arriving. Summer is symbolic of fire, heat, beaches, outdoor activities, and moving outward in nature and in our lives. It represents expansion and activity, abundant energy and longer days. The Summer Solstice on June 21st provides a poignant example of the cyclical nature of Yin and Yang energy. One is never without the other and as soon as a peak is reached, the cycle reverses itself. The long hot Yang days of summer are accompanied by more outdoor activity and fun. Simultaneously, Yin energy strengthens as each night grows a little longer. In six months our winter will begin, and once again each night will grow shorter.
I would describe Five Element or Five Phases theory as both a context and a lens, applied with intent to diagnose and treat a patient. “Five elements” and “five phases” are terms that have been used interchangeably, with slightly different meanings. “Five elements” describes five compository forces occurring in Nature, namely, earth, wood, metal, water and fire. Some scholars prefer to use the term “phases” rather than “elements,” in order to convey the morphing and co-affecting properties of the elements, and avoid portraying them as being static.
I was sitting at the desk in my office when a woman in her seventies suddenly appeared in the doorway and asked me, “Excuse me, do you treat cancer patients?” As I was looking for the right words to form my answer, the woman made that task easier for me. “You see, my husband has lung cancer, and he is undergoing chemotherapy. His doctor is happy with the results because my husband’s metastases have stopped spreading. Before starting the treatment, however, he was active and energetic, but now he spends most of the day in bed. Can acupuncture help?”
Have you ever experienced a burn that instantly felt better once you put ice on it? After a few minutes of relief, it is natural to assume that removing the ice would not cause an increase of pain, so you remove the ice. Surprise, the burn becomes more intense and the pain sinks deeper into your body. You reapply the ice. This goes on for a while. Ice goes on, ice comes off to surprise you with burning pain. On again, off again. Finally you can remove the ice and the pain will have sufficiently subsided. Trauma works the same way in that it continues to trickle into your body unless you stop it. If left unchecked, this silent, toxic force seeps deeper continually over the course of years.
Considering we spend over 80% of our time indoors, it’s vital that our home is supportive and nurturing for us. When you enter your home, you should feel as though it is hugging and embracing you. Your home is merely an outward expression of what is going on inside its tenants. This is why it is so important for your home to reflect the life you want to live. I am always asked what the first step in feng shui is. Most importantly, I suggest that your home is clutter-free. That means getting rid of anything that is no longer serving or honouring you. This includes clothing you have not worn in a year, things that are broken, things you don’t need, use or love.
Sleep is a key ingredient for a healthy and joyful life. Good sleep acts as a rejuvenator of the mind and regenerator of the body, enabling us to perform optimally during our waking hours. Even powerful medicine is of hardly any use if this fundamental ingredient of life is missing. Unfortunately, the modern approach to getting enough sleep is taking vast numbers of sleeping pills. Approximately 60 million sleeping pill prescriptions were filled in 2011, a new high. Both the effectiveness and safety of these drugs are inadequately reviewed, and though typically prescribed for short-term use only, some users become abusers, heavily addicted.
I believe massage therapy has a ripple effect--a radiating energy, an extension of our clients’ own healing processes, on through to the other humans within their circle. In our work with pregnant clients, this connection is even more obvious, and infinitely rewarding. When we work with a woman who is carrying another human inside her, we are essentially working with two people simultaneously. As practitioners of touch therapy, we must be fully present to be mindful of that fact. Part of our role as therapist is to educate our clients (and other health care practitioners) about the many benefits that purposeful bodywork engenders for both the mother and the baby.
Herman Kauz has been a prominent teacher of tai chi for over 60 years. For the past 15 years, he has instructed the free Push-Hands class on the San Diego campus. In the 1970s, he trained with Cheng Man-ching, himself a student of Yang Chengfu, who was one of the most famous teachers of tai chi ever to have lived. Cheng Man-ching’s short-form Yang-style tai chi, one of the first to be introduced to the West, has since become the most widespread style of the art in the Unites States.
The Chinese New Year is an opportunity to honor family and friends and enjoy some of China's traditions. Lucky colors for the year are brown, red, and purple, and lucky numbers are two and seven. Some foods are considered lucky because of the similarity of their names to other words in the language, such as the fact that the Chinese word for "orange", 橙 chéng, sounds like the world for gold, 金 jīn, or that the word for "tangerine", 柑橘 gānjú, sounds like the word for "luck", 运气 yùnqì. The bright orange color of the fruits also represents the metallic sheen of gold. Find out what other lucky foods to eat and display to ensure a prosperous and happy new year!