What is Qi?

blog acupuncture for itch 1The idea of qi has both mystical and practical aspects.  In Chinese philosophy, qi (pronounced “chee,” and is sometimes spelled “chi.”) is an energy that is in all things in the universe and comprises the building blocks of the universe.  Trees, rocks, and mountains all have a specific type of qi. It is the universal energy present in all of nature.

In Chinese medicine qi is the body’s energy is a very practical concept. Qi is the energy we use to keep us healthy. It allows us to work, grow, exercise, and reproduce. Imbalances in the qi can lead to … Read More

All About Acupressure

Acupressure is the massage of acupressure points and channels.   I often use acupressure and tui na (Chinese medical massage) combined with with acupuncture in my clinic.

Acupressure in context

To really understand how acupressure works, we have to see it as part of the whole of Traditional Chinese Medicine.

Chinese medicine dates back thousands of years.  The first book of Chinese medicine is called the Huang di nei jing, or the Yellow Emperor’s Inner Cannon.   

acupressureThe book is a conversation between the Yellow Emperor and his doctor, named Qi Bo.  Qi bo explains that health comes from a state … Read More

Acupressure for Back and Neck Pain

On Monday is the last class of my Acupressure for Self Healing Class at the Open Center.  My some of students asked for a preview of the class.

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Favorite Acupuncture Book Recommendations

Patients are always interested in learning more about acupuncture and Chinese medicine.  Here are my favorite books for theory, history, and clinical applications of acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine.

Introductory Books to Acupuncture and Chinese medicine

The History of Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine

My Favorite Acupuncture Manual

My Favorite Qi Gong Book

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Hum Your Sinus Headache Away

I am always searching for simple remedies for preventative medicine and self care.  That’s why I was excited to see a short article last month in the New York Times that discusses how humming can help to relieve sinus infections and headaches.

Humming reduces sinus inflammation by stimulating the release of nitric oxide, a signaling molecule in the body which helps smooth muscle relax and causing vasodilation to increase blood flow.  Less inflammation means the body recovers quicker and can fight off infections.

Many of my acupuncture patients have asthma and allergies, making them more susceptible to sinus infections … Read More

Resetting the Immune System: Allergies, Asthma, and Acupuncture

Mast Cells

The immune system is a wonderful thing.  Without it we could not live a second–we would be totally consumed by bacteria and viruses.  But, it is fickle.  It can overreact or react in response to something that is not a pathogen.

Allergies are caused by the immune system reacting in a way it should not, and giving us problems.  Asthma is also caused by the immune system overreacting.


Why do asthma and allergies often occur together?

Asthma and allergies are both caused by an over reaction in your immune system. And it is no surprise to those with asthma, that … Read More