Acupuncture Month – All New Fertility Clients $99

Enhance your own natural fertility using acupuncture.

It’s acupuncture month at Brisbane Natural Health – where we celebrate acupuncture and give our new clients a leg up by offering them $50 off their first appointment.

It you want to feel better, reduce pain, improve energy, get pregnant, fix a condition then this is the time to act!

Our acupuncturist Angela uses Japanese acupuncture – a pain free technique that helps to restore and balance the body while leaving you completely relaxed. Angela has advanced training in fertility and IVF care and has worked alongside some of Australia’s best fertility specialist acupuncturists.

Conditions that we can help with include:

  • infertility
  • male infertlity
  • improving IVF and IUI success rates
  • pregnancy
  • endometriosis
  • PCOS
  • amenorrhea
  • low libido

All new client appointments are just $99 during July 2017, so give us a call on 07 3367 0337 or book online and start feeling good again!

We think we’re awesome. But don’t believe us – check out what other people have told Google about us here.

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5 Home remedies to beat the cold weather and change of season blues

1 – Essential Oil antiseptic blend – for cold, flu, sinus congestion, stuffy nose and headache.

Add to water :

Eucalyptus oil 5 drops

Lavender oil 5 drops

Peppermint oil 3 drops

Tea Tree Oil 3 drops

*Use to inhale over a bowl of steaming hot water: Place oils into a litre of boiling hot water. Being careful not to tip it on yourself, place a towel over your head and the bowl to create a steam chamber for you to inhale the essential oil vapours and clear a stuffy head.  

*In a diffuser or oil burner to imbue the home or office with cleansing, refreshing, smells. Place the oils into the water chamber as directed by your choice of diffuser.

2 – Chesty night – time cough relief – suitable for infants through to adults.

You will need:

4 slices of fresh onion

A couple of drops of olive oil

Cling film/plastic wrap

Thick socks

A willingness for your bedroom to smell like soup in the morning. (A small price to pay for cough relief during the night)

Before bed, rub a small amount of oil on the soles of the feet. Careful place the sliced onion rings on the soles of the feet and hold in place with the cling film.  Pull your socks over the top and hop into bed. The sulfur compounds in the onions will infuse through the blood-stream into the lungs and help relieve mucous congestion and cough. Works great on kids. A jump-suit or one-piece outfit is recommended to prevent babies and toddlers distributing the onions all through the room/house.

3 – Home – made cough syrup

You will need:

1 large red onion

1 small chilli (optional)

Approximately ½-1 cup raw honey

Slice the onion into rings and dice the chilli. Place into a wide mouthed glass jar.  Cover with honey and allow to steep in a cool place for 1-3 days. To relieve a dry or raspy incessant cough or scratchy throat, take a teaspoon full of the mixture as required.

4 – Sniffle Tea – A brew for your stuffy nose…

You will need:

1 lemon, washed well.

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/8th teaspoon cayenne

2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger

2 teaspoons raw honey

3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar

600ml boiling filtered water.

Cut the lemon in half and squeeze the juice into a tea pot or coffee plunger. Drop the skins in there as well.  Add the remaining ingredients and allow to brew for 10 minutes before drinking. Great for hayfever, sinus and sore throat. If you’re super keen you can also add a clove of fresh raw garlic crushed for extra antibacterial punch!

5 – Circulation Boosters – help keep your hands and feet warm in the cold weather.

As you know exercise, and a hot bath do wonders for improving circulation, but you can also include certain foods in your diet to keep your blood circulating happily:

Try:

Cayenne Pepper – Take a pinch of cayenne pepper in a cup of warm water with a teaspoon of black strap molasses. Drink 1-2 cups daily.

Turmeric & Ginger – Replace your morning coffee with a hot turmeric latte. Spice it up with some ground ginger, cardammon, cinnamon and raw honey.

Make soups, curries and casseroles with extra chilli, garlic, rosemary and turmeric to help keep your blood thin and metabolism on the go.

Snack on some almonds, walnuts, macadamias and your favourite nuts and seeds as a good source of the circulation boosting vitamin E.

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5 ways to combat cold & flu season

In Traditional Chinese Medicine, we believe our bodies have a type of Qi, or energy called “Wei Qi”. Wei Qi is our protective Qi and is located on the surface of the body. You can think of Wei Qi as the immune system – its job is to keep out invaders such as harmful viruses and bacteria.

As an acupuncturist, I’m always being asked by patients how they can increase their immunity at this time of the year. While most people know the importance of washing their hands there are a number of other ways you can help keep those bugs away. In addition to Acupuncture here are a few simple things you can do to help improve your immune system.

Exercise

The New York Times recently ran an article about a study which examined the relationship between regular exercise and healthy immune response.  Although mice, not humans were used in the study, it showed that mice who exercised regularly were better able to fight off infections. While exercise is important, there have been studies showing that over-exercising can actually harm your immunity, so remember that moderation is key.

 

Wear A Scarf

In Traditional Chinese Medicine, the nape of the neck is believed to be particularly susceptible to invasion by the wind element, which means colds and flu. Therefore, covering your neck is important, especially on cold, windy days or when you are sitting close to an air conditioning vent or fan.

 

Try A Saline Nasal Spray and/or a humidifier

When the heat is on inside your home or office, your nasal passages can become very dry. This is a problem because your natural nasal secretions are one of the body’s primary defences against viruses and bacteria. By using a basic, inexpensive saline nasal spray several times daily and a humidifier at your home and office, you can decrease the likelihood of viruses entering your sinuses and leading to a cold or flu. Using a saline nasal spray also helps flush out viruses that are already within your nasal passages.

 

Sleep

Your body produces substances called Cytokines during sleep. Certain types of cytokines play a role in immune functions, so it makes sense that the less sleep you get, the fewer cytokines are produced. Studies show that people who don’t get 7-8 hours of sleep per night are more likely to catch a cold and take longer to recover from colds.

 

Take a Chinese Herbal Formula

There are Chinese Herbal combinations which are very helpful for people who experience recurrent colds and respiratory infections. You must always see a trained herbalist, since there is no one herb which is good for everyone’s situation. It must be individually tailored to your health history and constitution. Herbs can also be helpful if you do come down with a cold or the flu.

Written by Angela Marshall – Acupuncturist at Brisbane Natural Health

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Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine for Insomnia

 

In recent years, it has become increasingly clear that stress is a primary factor to ill health and disease. Today’s daily responsibilities are demanding more and more from us then ever before, tighter deadlines and increased pressures often leaves us eating on the run, substituting healthy options, and not having time for an exercise routine. Although all of these examples are consistent with an unbalanced lifestyle, one of the stand-alone causes of stress, and stress related illness, is inadequate and poor quality sleep.

According to the NIH (National Institute of Health) studies indicate that quality sleep is primary to help maintain health, and to prevent many of the medical conditions on the rise, that present in clinics all over the world today. Disorders like diabetes, depression, chronic fatigue, obesity and degenerative heart disease are just a few. Data also indicates that inadequate sleep is also linked to antisocial behavior and mood swings, in both adults and adolescents. The bottom line is, quality sleep helps us to maintain health on all physiological levels, and leaves us feeling more focused and in control of our daily lives. For those individuals that truly suffer from the depleting effects of insomnia and sleep disturbances will tell you, there will come a time that you will seek resolve, treatment will be inevitable.

So what are the treatment options? Most people unaware of help outside of orthodox medicine will generally talk to their doctor to find out what can be done to help. Sleeping medications known as “Sedative Hypnotics” are often prescribed, these are of the Benzodiazepine family of drugs. Although people will sleep, there are many undesirable side effects that can come with it, effects that include drowsiness, changes in appetite, constipation, stomach pain, dizziness, headache and heartburn, among other symptoms. This outcome for most people can quickly turn out to be counter productive when trying to achieve balance in health.

 

But thankfully there is another effective treatment option, Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine. In the clinical setting the Chinese Medical practitioner is interested in all aspects of the individual’s health. Through the East Asian medical model, the therapist bridges the connections between the insomnia and the other symptoms that are present.

For many it might seem a little rich to think that changing eating habits could compliment treatment, so lets look at a scenario that presents regularly in the clinic. Mr. X primary complaint is Insomnia. When questioned thoroughly we find that Mr. x also complains of low back pain with heightened libido, upper trap and neck pain, irritability, dry mouth and thirst. When questioned about diet, Mr. X states that he eats quite healthy, toast and coffee in the mornings, a salad and a cut of meat for lunch, and maybe something quick and easy like pasta of an evening, usually around 8 or 9pm and a black tea before bed. A Chinese Medical diagnosis concludes that Mr. X has Kidney Yin deficiency with heat rising.

In Chinese Medical Pathology, the cooling and nourishing Kidney energy has become weakened, and is failing to support the lower back. As time goes on, this creates a lot of heat, which moves upwards, drying up the fluids in the upper back and neck, causing pain and rigidity. This rising heat also accumulates in the head and has the ability to cause insomnia and dream disturbed sleep. By adjusting Mr. X evening eating habits, cutting out the refined carbs and introducing something nourishing like a vegetable soup, Mr. X body would no longer need to try and break down refined carbohydrates that spike his blood sugar while he sleeps. He could be instructed to drink an herbal tea instead of black tea, which contains caffeine, and make eating earlier of an evening a daily practice.

These changers, along with a prescribed herbal supplements that help with cooling the body, and restoring the nourishing qualities of the Kidney, the adjustments to diet, goes a long way to compliment the physical and harmonic effects of the Acupuncture treatment. It also gives everybody the chance to learn and take further control of there own health, day to day. An appreciation and understanding of the obvious connection between all symptoms becomes the primary focus, and the results speak for themselves.

 

What’s more, Acupuncture can stimulate the body’s own production of Melatonin to help with sleep, this is supported by a study published in the Journal of Neuropsychology in 2004, which indicated that Acupuncture, does in fact stimulate the production of endogenous Melatonin. The preliminary study concluded that Acupuncture proved to be a therapeutic intervention for anxious people suffering from insomnia, and could serve as a substitute to pharmaceutical therapy. Our Acupuncturists and Chinese Medical practitioners find that Insomnia is a common complaint in our clinic and although Acupuncture can often be the principle therapy, as indicated above; herbal supplementation and dietary advice will also be drawn upon to help support treatment and improve positive clinical outcomes.

The above information is brief but informative, as to how Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine could help you with Insomnia and sleep disturbance. It gives clear insights in both a Chinese and Western medical context, as to how Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine has proved its clinical efficacy and survived for so long as a solid treatment option.

At Brisbane natural health we take pride in our approach to help you to wellness. We have a full team of natural health practitioners and offer extended support through a great network of allied health professionals. If you’d like an acupuncture appointment at our Brisbane clinic to help you sleep, call us on 07 3367 0337 now.

 

References;

 

http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/health-topics/topics/sdd/why

 

http://www.webmd.com/sleep-disorders/guide/understanding-the-side-effects-of-sleeping-pills

 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Melatonin

 

http://neuro.psychiatryonline.org/doi/full/10.1176/jnp.16.1.19

 

Zan Fu Syndromes “Differential Diagnosis and Treatment” McDonald, J, Penner, J (1994)

 

 

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Moxibustion and acupuncture for correcting breech presentation

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Be patient with your body – it takes time to heal.

Being unwell can be so frustrating, especially when you’re not exactly sure what is happening in your body. The question that everyone asks us is ‘how long will it take until I get better’? Although we can give you approximate time frames of how long you might take to heal, there is no way to know for sure because everyone is unique – and each person has their own set of circumstances that can affect their healing time.

Some of the things that can affect how quickly you heal from a certain ailment include:

  • Your genetics
  • If you’re eating the right diet
  • How stressed you are
  • If you’re getting enough sleep
  • How long you have had the illness for
  • What your lifestyle is like – exercise, relaxation, self care
  • How well you can stick to your treatment plan

You need to look back to see how far you have come.

At the beginning of treatment, changes are often more noticeable – you can feel remarkably different in the first weeks and really feel the shift. As time goes on though, changes are often slower and can be less noticeable. Quite commonly we get patients in their 3rd or 4th month or treatment that report that they don’t really fell very different, but when you look back at where they started and compare symptoms you can clearly see that they are much better off then when they started. What can be unnoticeable to the patient can be obvious for the practitioner – that’s why it is important that the right questions are asked and the right tests are undertaken to make sure we can track your progress along the way.

You need to look back to see what changes have really been made.

You’re not called a patient for nothing!

A mentor of mine, master herbalist Kerry Bone, often says to his frustrated patients ‘you’re not called a patient for nothing’. Healing takes time and you do need to be patient as your body does its thing. A good adage is that for every year that you have had a certain condition or ailment it is going to take at least one month to correct it. If you have been bloated since you were a teen and you’re now 30 then you’ll likely need 15 months of treatment to get to the bottom of it. It is important to understand that healing takes time and persistence, and as long as you are giving your body the right combination of treatment, food and lifestyle factors then you will heal.

Some symptoms will resolve within weeks whereas others may take months or even years. It helps to remember that it took some time for your body to get into this state and it is going to take some time to unravel the damage and get it back to health.

 

If you have any questions about your treatment plan, please ask your naturopath, acupuncturist or case manager who will be able to talk about your individual case.

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Primary Dysmenorrhea: A Traditional Chinese Approach to Period Pain

Amongst the multitude of treatment options for those experiencing primary dysmenorrhea (period pain which is not attributed to any other pathology such as: endometriosis, fibroids etc.), traditional Chinese medicine and the complimentary medicine approach excels in the management and treatment of symptoms.

From the western perspective, primary dysmenorrhea is one of the most prevalent and disabling gynecological disorders with no identifiable aetiology. It is a disorder which is said to incur an economic impact on a global scale, with an estimated 600 million work hours and 2 billion dollars lost annually in the USA alone. One study recorded as many as 50% of women were affected by primary dysmenorrhea and another 10% experiencing symptoms severe enough to render them incapacitated.

Despite this, other than ruling out secondary dysmenorrhea, the conventional medical approach can offer little insight to its origin. The level of understanding with regard to causative factors from a TCM point of view is more comprehensive in comparison.

In TCM gynecology, the Liver organ and Penetrating vessel, also known as the Chong Mai, are crucial in the free flow of Qi and Blood. Free flow = a painless existence.

The Chong Mai flows through the uterus and is also known as the sea of blood.

Acupuncture

Acupuncture reduces pain in women with dysmenorrhea

Acupuncture, Tui Na (Chinese remedial massage) and Chinese herbs work to harmonise the flow of Qi and Blood in the uterus by treating meridians on the body. There are however, plenty of things that we can do to ensure free flow without even getting to the point of disease! A diet rich in anti-inflammatory foods, an abundance of physical activity and relaxation exercises, nourishing sleep habits and an avoidance of drugs and alcohol will all benefit the Chong Mai and help to keep the menstrual cycle in balance. This also applies to the treatment of subfertility with Chinese medicine. A healthy cycle is a good way to ensure a healthy pregnancy.

Many women are led to believe that it is quite normal to have a huge amount of pain during menstruation and that it is normal to pop a few pain killers or take oral contraceptives to avoid this. According to the old Chinese texts, this is only a modern pathology. Normal periods are pain free and regular in length.

Conventional medicine, although efficient in its pharmacotherapy, lacks the availability of a lasting solution for primary dysmenorrhea and a youth of periods spent fighting pain with prescription medication or pain killers, often leading to undiagnosed complications with fertility, is pretty common unfortunately.

There is a stack of research out there that shows the efficacy of acupuncture and Chinese herbs in dramatically improving the quality of life and level of pain that women are experiencing. Generally, studies show the best results are had over a 3 month treatment regime for chronic cases. The added benefit of an individualised diagnosis and treatment, is that the effects are seen on a more than symptomatic level. Accompanying symptoms such as referred lower back pain, nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea, headache, fatigue, anxiety, and dizziness were also alleviated from acupuncture. TCM treatment is also found to have lasting effects on pain relief of up to a 3-6 month follow up period.

Hugh Hayward – Chinese Medicine Doctor, Acupuncture & Chinese Herbalist, An Mo Tui Na and Qi Nei Tsang

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Winter Is Coming…

Chinese medicine ideas for staying healthy and warm in winter.

Studies have shown that the Influenza virus is more stable and air borne for longer in cold and dry air; the winter months being the perfect conditions for transmission. This is possibly one reason we experience the flu more in winter.

In Chinese medicine theory, the cold and dry air put strain on the Lung and Wei Qi (defensive qi or immunity), thus allowing for the invasion of pathogenic influences. Some of us may already have poor Wei Qi as a result of things such as: poor diet, overwork, chronic illness, recurring respiratory illness, long term use of antibiotics, smoking, drug and alcohol abuse, being an infant or elderly, mental stress or poor sleeping habits. If this is the case, we need to make a special effort to combat the seasonal shift and stay healthy.

Most of us probably fit into one or more of those characteristics and will encounter 2-4 bouts of the flu or other respiratory illnesses, of varying intensity each year. It is normal from a conventional medicine point of view to experience this, and you probably have heard that this is your body’s way of developing immunity. From a TCM point of view however, once your Wei Qi is developed and healthy, we should only ever experience this during a seasonal shift, and with far less consequences.

Some people may have difficulty kicking the sickness once it arrives and may have residual symptoms for up to a month or more. If this is the case, complications can arise and cause long-term illness. It puts a huge strain on your mental state and can impact your productivity at work and the relationships that surround you, especially if you pass it on to your family or peers!

Here are some ways to stay healthy and keep up that Wei Qi throughout the year.

Cover up!

In Chinese medicine, the more your temperature fluctuates, the more energy we expend keeping out pathogenic invasion. Constant battling against the weather is a sure way to deplete your Wei Qi and become ill. So stay rugged up, especially on the neck and shoulders, lower back and soles of the feet and try avoiding drafts or air conditioning.

Keeping your head and neck warm in winter helps to keep your defences working well.

Eat seasonally.

As the cooler months set in, the types of foods naturally available to us will change. Stick to seasonal fruit and vegetables and this will aid your digestion in transforming food into energy. According to Chinese dietary theory, your body has an internal cook pot, which needs to work harder to digest colder foods such as raw vegetables and fruits. In the winter months, when these foods are naturally less available, the internal cook pot generally benefits from more easily digestible foods; broths, stews, root vegies, congee, oats, soups and slow cooked roasts are all great ways to stay warm.

Conserve your energy.

Most of us will relate to the desire to stay indoors and be less active during winter. While it is not so applicable in Queensland, most cultures that experience a full-blown winter nestle in when the cold hits. Winter is about consolidation and hibernation. Exercising to the same degree as we do in summer will deplete hard earned energy stores. Athletes who train all year round make an exception to this rule, although they make sure to aptly warm their bodies before a work out. In many cases due to their high intensity training, the Wei Qi of an athlete is much stronger and they don’t feel the weather like most. To stay moving in winter some exercises that we could continue include yoga (not hot yoga), tai chi, qi gong, meditation or stretching.

Finally, avoid damaging the Wei Qi with substance abuse.

Culturally speaking, Australians love to get loose on the weekends and winter is no exception. If you really can’t avoid hammering your immunity with cigarettes and alcohol at least try to drink seasonally and responsibly. Good quality mulled wine, red wine, plum wine, rice wine, port, porter, stout, dark ales and dark spirits, can all be enjoyed in moderation and are more nourishing and warming.

If we try our best to listen to what our bodies crave naturally in seasonal shifts we will have a much easier time adapting and staying free from illness. While we can still afford the occasional slip up from time to time, when the bugs hit the battle will be quick and with minimal casualties.

Posted by acupuncturist Hugh Hayward.

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Acupuncture Month – All New Clients $99

We love acupuncture and we want you to love it too!

It’s acupuncture month at Brisbane Natural Health – where we celebrate acupuncture and give our new clients a leg up by offering them $50 off their first appointment.

It you want to feel better, reduce pain, improve energy, get pregnant, fix a condition then this is the time to act!

Our acupuncturist Angela uses Japanese acupuncture – a pain free technique that helps to restore and balance the body while leaving you completely relaxed.

Conditions that we can help with include:

  • fertility
  • pregnancy
  • digestive issues
  • anxiety and depression
  • body aches and pains
  • headaches
  • hormonal issues
  • skin problems

All new client appointments are just $99 during July 2017, so give us a call on 07 3367 0337 or book online and start feeling good again!

We think we’re awesome. But don’t believe us – check out what other people have told Google about us here.

Hello

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Getting to know your body

Let’s talk about getting to know your own body and what’s right for you.
A lot of patients come to us and they are really out of touch with their bodies. I would like to explore the concept that signs and symptoms are your body’s way of telling you that something’s wrong. When you get bloated, tired, have skin problems or anxiety, these symptoms are your body’s way of saying ‘I am out of balance and I need help’.

What we actually want to do is retrain you so that you can start listening and tuning in to your own body. And the first step is getting back to normal. So once we’ve actually resolved these symptoms and things are going well and you are feeling good again, you’ll start to notice when things go out of whack.

The trick is to really observe your body, instead of ignoring it. We are very stoic in Australia – you are taught if you have a symptom just ignore it. For example, if you have a sore tummy, someone might say to you, “oh you’ll be fine”. You probably think that these symptoms are minor and there’s nothing major going on. We are taught to just deal with it and ‘suck it up’. The problem is that when you do that, you really are ignoring your body’s language and you’re not really listening to the clues that it is out of balance and it needs help.

A good example would be when you have a cold or flu. Before you get a cold, there are these little warning signs that tell you that the immune system’s going down. You might feel tired, a little bit achy, might be having an off day but it’s not until the symptoms come that you think,” Oh I really didn’t feel that well the last few days”. Then you start getting a running nose and at that point you do something about it. You may try to get some more rest; you might take vitamin C or take a day off work.

Imagine if, when those early warning signs – when you started feeling achy and a little run down – you took vitamins and looked after yourself, the outcome would be that you may not even get the cold. Or perhaps you might not have it for as long or the severity may be minimalized. We really need to start tuning back in and listening to our bodies. So start observing, because when you do, you’ll know what’s going on and what’s happening to your body.

As you are going through the healing process and you start feeling better and better, remember what it feels like to feel good. And recall when you didn’t feel so good. If you do start feeling a bit off again, ask yourself what’s going on. Do I need to change my diet? Do I need to rest more? Do I need to check back with my practitioner in these early stages so that I can get on top of this and feel good again?

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