Having a robust immune
system will help you stay healthy and energetic enough to meet your
responsibilities and smash your goals. However, as the weather gets colder, it
can be harder to battle the different illnesses flying around.
Here are six ways you can strengthen your immune system and combat the germs that will bring you down.
Get Your Vitamins
Believe it or not, vitamin
deficiencies are quite common. This challenge is primarily because the modern
diet doesn’t have the variability and nutrient-rich components our ancestors
enjoyed. While the best way to get enough vitamins to prevent illness and boost
your immune system is through your diet, supplementing can help fill the gaps.
Look for a multivitamin
that fits your specific needs. For example, a women’s multivitamin
will often have more calcium to offset the risk of osteoporosis. Vegetarian
vitamins will often have more vitamin B12 to replace what’s usually found in
meat sources. Taking a vitamin can help bolster your immune system and keep you
When you get stressed out,
your body gets depleted. By having strong coping mechanisms to reduce stress,
you’ll be protecting your immune system.
There are many ways to
practice stress reduction. Meditation is a powerful mindfulness practice that
can help let go of negative thoughts. Journaling can help you reframe negative
experiences into positive learnings. Prioritize self-care practices that help
you de-stress and unwind.
Wash Your Hands
In many ways, the world is
over-sterilized. Overuse of antibiotics and sanitizers have created resistance
in common cold and flu strains. So, while you should avoid over sanitization,
regularly washing your hands is an effective way to boost your immunity and
limit the spread of germs.
Not only does drinking
water help flush your system of germs and toxins, but it also promotes gut
health. Proper gut health plays a crucial role in your overall immune system.
Drink a minimum of the recommended eight glasses a day, making adjustments based
on your body size and activity levels.
Focus on Gut Health
Speaking of gut health, in
addition to drinking water, you should reintroduce healthy bacteria to the gut.
Eating fermented foods and food rich in probiotics and prebiotics can have a
positive impact on your immune system.
Additionally, eating food
that’s rich in fiber to help regulate digestion can have lasting positive
impacts on your overall health and wellness.
Regular exercise can help reduce stress, assist with weight management, flush toxins from your
body, and improve your cardiovascular health. All of these play a key role in
boosting your immune system.
The one caveat is for those
who frequently engage in high-intensity training. Allow yourself ample time for
recovery and regeneration, as over-training can have the opposite effect on
your immune system. Listen to your body and lower the intensity when you’re
By following these six practices, you’ll enhance your immune system and be ready to duke it out during cold and flu season. Take a habit-building approach and focus on improving one area at a time until it becomes routine.
I took this photo a few years ago on a beautiful morning in Nanjing, China. It captures a family-run street stall selling mouth-watering fried breadsticks. The family members worked together in perfect harmony, radiating joy and contentment despite their modest setup and affordable prices. Taking this photo was a reminder to me that happiness and contentment are essential for good health and a fulfilling life.
Prostatitis is a common condition in male adults. To understand the disease, first understand the location of the prostate. The prostate is an accessory gland of the male reproductive organs. Its shape is like a chestnut, which surrounds the upper end of the urethra and can be touched by fingers in the anal canal. The cause of prostatitis is mostly caused by prostatic hyperemia. A small number of patients may be caused by bacterial infection.
The main symptoms after prostatitis are frequent urination, urgency, dysuria, and white discharge from the urethra. Some patients experience pain in the perineum, lumbosacral region, rectum, spermatic cord, testis, or groin; they can even cause sexual dysfunction. A small number of patients have neurasthenia symptoms.
The diagnosis of prostatitis can be divided into acute and chronic. Acute cases often have high fever, chills, frequent urination, urgency, and urinary tract infections are very similar, patients have no low back pain and tenderness at this time; such as rectal examination can be found in the prostate enlargement and tenderness, and urine routine examination there is only a small amount of white blood cells; in this case, a prostatic fluid test will reveal a large number of pus cells. Chronic prostatitis is more common in m men in their 30s and 40s. The lesions can change from acute to chronic, and most patients have no acute phase.
Traditional Chinese medicine scholars from the Tang Dynasty to the Song, Yuan, Ming and Qing Dynasties generally believe that the main symptoms of prostatitis belong to the category of gonococcal disease, which is caused by kidney deficiency 腎虛, bladder heat dampness 膀胱濕熱, gasification and loss of water 氣化失司, and unfavorable Urethra passage 水道不利. And put forward the principle of treatment: promote urination, clearing evil heat, and boost circulation. According to the above principles, Luciferous Traditional Medicine Clinic practitioner has treated the disease for many years based on the [Medical Mindfulness 醫學心悟] by Ching Chung Ling 程鐘齡, the “Rhizoma Dioscoreae Hypoglaucae Decoction for Clearing Turbid Urine 萆薢分清飲”:
Place all the above ingredients into a clay pot then add 750ml of water, boil to reduce to approximate 250ml of decoction, one 250ml dose daily, 16 days as per one treatment course. Generally, two courses of treatment are needed.
The advantage of this herbal medicine combination is that it clears the turbidity and Qi stagnation; it has no negative adverse effects. Acute and chronic prostatitis can be taken. During the treatment, the patient should not consume spicy fried foods; coffee and alcohol should also be avoided.
The older adults should consider use in the winter tonic [Huang Jing and meat broth] “延年祛病, 莫若黃精 (longevity and immunity, must use Huang Jing)” This is the health adage in the era of 唐朝Tang Dynasty (618 – 907A.D.). In the winter, [Huang Jing Tang] Soup of Huang Jing is tonic, and there is the merit of longevity and immunity. The prescription is as follows:
黃精 (Huang Jing) Rhizoma Polygonati 15 grams 黃蓍 (Huang Qi) Radix Astragali 10 grams 枸杞子 (Gou Qi Zi) Fructus Lycii 5 grams 山萸肉 (Shan Zhu Yu) Fructus Corni 5 grams Lean pork meat (or Chicken meat) 50 – 100 grams Use reasonable amount of water (approximate 1 Litre), boiled soup, seasoning with little amount of salt only.
The Huang Jing (or yellow essence by direct translation) in Chinese medicine point of views it is sweet and neutral but not dry. It functions to tonifies the Spleen Qi and nourishes the Spleen Yin; and Nourish Yin in general and moistens the Lungs. In recent years, the medical literature reported its pharmacological effects as: Firstly, it is nourishing and strong Secondly, it has an inhibitory effect on hyperglycaemia Thirdly, it helps improvement of atherosclerosis and fatty liver Fourthly, improve high blood pressure Fifthly, inhibit Mycobacterium tuberculosis, Salmonella typhi, and skin fungus
In Traditional Chinese Medicine, gut health is an integral component of living a healthy and balanced life. However, we are seeing an increased number of new patients seeking support in regards to a variety of digestive issues.
Often, patients seek the support of a Traditional Chinese Medicine practitioner after trying various Western treatments to which they have experienced little to no success – and in some cases, even experience an increase in their symptoms.
A powerful alternative, herbal medicine strives to heal the body naturally by eliminating the root cause and looking at all of the different elements that may be contributing to the digestive upset.
During consultations, Traditional Chinese Medicine practitioners prescribe a unique blend of herbs to combat your individual symptoms, and closely monitor the effects, tweaking the prescription where necessary to ensure each patient achieves the very best results.
Here are some of the common ingredients that may be included in your prescription.
Geng Mi (Semen Oryzae)
A rice extract powder which can help to soothe the stomach and manage thirst, diarrhea and fatigue.
Ji Nei Jin (Endothelium Corneum Gigeriae Galli)
A chicken extract used to promote digestion and remove stagnant food as well as aid in eliminating nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, moving undigested foods, and severe indigestion.
Shan Zha (Fructus Crataegi)
A berry extract that is known for its ability to reduce food stagnation as well as it’s cardiovascular benefits.
Mai Ya (Fructus Hordei Germinatus)
A barley extract most commonly used to promote the digestion of carbohydrates and starches.
Chen Pi (Pericarpium Citri Reticulatae)
An extract made from orange or mandarin peel that is used to regulate the whole digestive system and support the spleen and stomach, while reducing nausea, vomiting, belching, abdominal fullness, and distention or pain.
To find out more about improving your gut health with herbal medicine, contact us on (03) 9576 8538 or book a consultation online
For many of us, screens have become an important part of our everyday lives – but mounting evidence suggests that utilising them to close to bedtime could be wreaking havoc on our sleep patterns.
According to sleep experts, watching television, looking at our phones or using a computer before bed can affect our sleep in the following ways.
Disrupts sleep cycle
One of the most important things to be aware of when looking at screens before bed is their ability to disrupt the bodies sleep cycle, also known as the circadian rhythm. Essentially, the blue light emitted from screens can restrict the bodies ability to produce melatonin, which is the hormone responsible for regulating the circadian rhythm, thereby making it harder to fall into a deep, restful sleep.
Rather than preparing you to drift off to sleep, using screens before bed typically encourages alertness and trick your brain into thinking you need to stay awake. While it may seem harmless, an exciting movie or an interesting article can stimulate your brain more than you might realise, and ultimately cause you to stay awake longer than you need to.
Unexpected wake up calls
In fact, mobile phones in particular have become such a key component in our everyday routines that many people rely on them as their morning alarm, meaning they tend to keep them on the nightstand or beside the bed. However, forgetting to switch your phone to silent can be seriously problematic to your sleep, as unexpected calls, messages and notifications can wake you during the night.
While there’s no need to give up screens altogether, we’re sure that we could all benefit from cutting down our screen time – and making a conscious effort to put away the gadgets at least 30 minutes before going to bed. For further support on living a healthy and balanced lifestyle, contact us on (03) 9576 8538 or book a consultation online.
Eczema… It’s either itchy, painful or itchy and painful at the same time. While not life-threatening, it’s an uncomfortable condition that for some can even be a source of embarrassment.
Affecting 1 in 3 Australians at some point in their lives, many eczema sufferers are prescribed medicines such as topical or oral corticosteroids, antihistamines, and immunosuppressants. However, these treatments can often come with a long list of side effects, and usually aren’t recommended to be used long-term. Fortunately, there is a way to combat this condition naturally.
While Western medicine considers eczema to be an allergic condition, and aims to control the symptoms caused by an imbalance in the immune system, Traditional Chinese Medicine sees eczema as a symptom of another illness – and aims to treat the root of the cause.
To treat eczema with Traditional Chinese Medicine, you will typically encounter a mixture of acupuncture and herbal medicine.
With acupuncture, your practitioner will work to activate the body’s natural healing processes where it is needed most. In the case of eczema, they will seek to reduce stress, as well as ensuring that the spleen and liver are functioning properly, you have good blood circulation and more.
As part of your herbal medicine treatment, your practitioner will help you to identify foods that can trigger a flare up and again, reduce stress. Once these physical and mental triggers have been removed, the next step would involve a mix of Chinese herbs. Some herbs that you may encounter are to improve spleen health are cablin patchouli and fortune eupotorium, and others used to treat liver health are Chinese thorowax root, tree peony bark and liquorice root.
Are you an eczema sufferer that has tried Traditional Chinese Medicine to help alleviate symptoms? If so, let us know how it worked out for you in the comments below! To book a consultation, call us on (03) 9576 8538 or book online today.
Money? Sex? Fame? Sleep? Food? All of those things are important, and one or two are probably particularly important for you, but what is most important?
Recovering from a major stroke gives you a lot of options to choose from to answer that question. Let’s see.., my scalp acupuncture sessions, those are pretty important. Ok, uhh, my Chinese medicine herbalist, I have to include her, she prescribed me two kinds Aconite. Wait a minute, what about Flint Rehab, I’m learning so much from them right now.., I don’t know, which one is it?
Typing up this article on my iPhone with my right hand (that was affected by the stroke) is one of the most difficult things I’ve ever had to do, but if I want to recover full function, I don’t have a choice. Each tap with my finger sends a signal to my brain that helps initiate neurogenesis (growth of new neurons in the brain), and it’s not just a few taps that I’m talking about, it’s probably something on the order of hundreds of thousands, even millions of taps over the next few years that will lead to restoring my finger’s full function (more specifically my brains full function). Tapping away with my right finger is something I’ve been putting off for the last two years. Granted, first I had to lift my hand to my face (that took about 6 months). Then, I had to have my finger steady enough to tap each key on the iPhone (another 6 months, and another year, well, for good luck). At that point it was just a matter of trying, having a mind that is willing to try a million times or more; a “try mind” as my teacher used to say.
My finger’s not that steady, believe me, spastic is a better word to describe it, but I figured at some point I’ve just got to jump in. Tapping each key on the phone is more of an understatement, really it’s more a matter of tapping a hundred times to select fifty of the right keys; thank God for auto-correct. It also helps to tap slowly, allowing my mind to concentrate on what I’m actually trying to say.
My friend Amanda is a great source of inspiration for me, she has encouraged my recovery since day one. Even with us not talking and being out of sorts lately, it has forced me to begin writing letters to her by hand, my right hand. That was two weeks ago and look at me tapping away now!
A good friend and partner is perhaps the next most important thing you can have. If that person is helping you to connect with your own heart through loving them, they are bringing you closer to God and feeling love in your heart sure helps with all this damn tapping! So, if you asked me what is the most important thing, I wanted to say a try mind at first, but I’m leaning towards a mind (mind and heart are the same character in Chinese —心) that’s full of love — which is really the source of a try mind when you think about it.
From depression to anxiety and general bouts of stress, mental health issues are increasingly becoming more common. In fact, one in five Australians aged between 16-85 will experience a mental illness in any given year.
Unlike a physical injury, many people tend to let their mental health go without help. However, it’s important to recognise that improving our mental health involves a little TLC and assistance, and acupuncture can be a great way to help activate the body’s natural healing process and improve your overall sense of health and wellbeing.
Here are some of the ways in which acupuncture can help us improve our mental health.
1.Balance nervous system
Put simply, acupuncture can help put your nervous system back in balance. Not sure what the nervous system is? It’s a system in your body that controls everything from the way you move, to how you think and feel. By tapping into the nervous system with acupuncture, it can help the system adapt to stress and re-educate itself to operate in a more optimal way.
2. Relieve symptoms
Mental health issues can often manifest themselves as physical symptoms in addition to emotional ones. As the acupuncture needles can tap into the nervous system, your practitioner can signal the brain to direct blood flow to the affected area of your body, relieving common symptoms such as tension headaches, and the inability to maintain a healthy weight.
3. Improve general wellbeing
Acupuncture can also improve your general wellbeing in ways such as increasing your quality of sleep, and balancing out your mood. But how does it do all of this? In technical terms it can stimulate the production of neurotransmitters as well as develop the production of dopamine, serotonin and so much more.
To find out more about how acupuncture can improve your mental health or to make an appointment, please contact us today.
Chinese herbal medicine can provide many invigorating effects, utilising powerful herbal formulas that have been used successfully for centuries… But did you know that Chinese herbal medicine can even help to balance out your hormones?
Hormone imbalances can occur for a variety of reasons, but typically occur due to lifestyle habits such as too much stress, a poor diet, ill health, excessive exercise, prescription medicines and a toxic overload that end up throwing us ‘out of whack’.
So, let’s delve a little deeper into why herbal medicine could be beneficial if you are experiencing the symptoms of hormonal imbalances.
Safe and gentle Herbal medicine is safe and gentle, using all-natural ingredients which are effective and promote a healthy equilibrium. There is no need to worry about the potentially harmful side effects of prescription medication, and our experienced practitioners will take into account any existing injury, ailments and prescribed medications to ensure maximum efficiency and the best results for you.
Continual monitoring and adjustment Rather than a one-size fits all approach to medicine, Chinese Herbal Medicine is tailored specifically to you, and the symptoms that you are experiencing. You will be given a formula and the effects of it will be closely monitored by your practitioner on a continual basis. If the formula isn’t working for you, it will likely be reviewed and adjusted at your next appointment – keeping your best interests in mind.
For even better results, try herbal medicine in conjunction with acupuncture. Acupuncture is a regulator for the body, and herbs are hormonal balancing – both playing a vital role in regulating, balancing and healthy organ function. Luciferous Traditional Medicine Acupuncture Clinic in Ormond, Greater Melbourne can help you on this issue.