Bacon and Eggs by stephk
Bacon and Eggs, a photo by stephk on Flickr.

Life expectancy would grow by leaps and bounds if green vegetables smelled as good as bacon. ~Doug Larson

Current Events Regarding Acupuncture

Sometimes my patients are surprised when they discover all the diverse ways that acupuncture is being used here in the United States. A good example of this is the research currently being conducted by the New England School of Acupuncture.  The school, also known as NESA, has been given a $1.2 million dollar grant from the Department of Defense to study the use of acupuncture as treatment for the multiple symptoms of Gulf War Illness. It is the first school to receive funding from the DOD.

Where have you encountered acupuncture?

Acupuncture Needles Hurt Less Than…

Bandaid Improvisation by jellywatson
Bandaid Improvisation, a photo by jellywatson on Flickr.

Yesterday I was running around the office harassing patients and co-workers by asking them what they would like to read about on an acupuncture blog. Not surprisingly they answered: needles. Someone else thought that it would be a good idea to start a list of things that hurt more than getting acupuncture. I thought that was a pretty good idea. The following are the collected responses to date.

Acupuncture needles hurt less than:

Getting your ears pierced
Waxing your eyebrows
Getting stung by a bee
A paper cut
Going to the dentist
Getting a sliver in your finger
Slamming your finger in a car door
Going to the DMV
Getting a pimple on the end of your nose
Getting a tattoo
Your leg “waking up” after it went to sleep
Paying taxes
A sunburn
Razor burn

And these just in:

Having an ingrown hair or an ingrown  finger nail

What things do YOU think hurt more than getting acupuncture? Let us know in the comments section.

Posted in needles. 1 Comment »

Breathing Well

lungs by ashrampep
lungs, a photo by ashrampep on Flickr.

It’s been said before but it’s definitely worth another mention: breathing is one of only three ways the body gets the “gas” it needs to go (according to traditional Chinese medicine) so it’s worth doing properly. You might be thinking, but breathing is automatic! That’s partially true but even so,  I see at least 1 person every week who isn’t breathing properly either due to stress or habit. How you breathe has significant and possibly long-term impact on your health.
Do you ever take a moment to check in with how you are breathing? In times of stress or fear it’s easy to breathe in a shallow fashion only utilizing the upper portions of both lungs. There is a simple way to check  if you are breathing correctly. Lie flat in a comfortable position. Put one hand on your chest and one hand just below your belly button. Take a few breaths noting which of your hands rises first. If you are breathing well your belly hand should rise first followed by your chest hand. When breathing in, imagine your breath heading for your abdomen. You should be creating a basketball in your abdomen on the in-breath and a flatter abdomen on the out-breath.
It may seem awkward at first, especially if you have been breathing in a different way, but a little persistence beats resistance!
Great work!


meditation by sudjuanda
meditation, a photo by sudjuanda on Flickr.

Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being, and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity. ~World Health Organization, 1948