Digestion, Diet, and Traditional Chinese Medicine

One of the most common ailments patients experience is troubled digestion. Digestive issues are very common, and acupuncture is an excellent way to treat digestive woes. Treatments that include acupuncture and herbs are indeed a very effective way to redirect qi to reduce and/or eliminate symptoms the manifest as digestive upset. But just as importantly, a treatment plan that includes attention to what foods a patient is eating and making necessary changes can sometimes be key in making the most effective adjustment to her health.

Chinese Food Therapy

The Chinese view food as having the ability to encourage health or detract from it, depending on what is ingested into the body’s system. The nature of food, as well as the body’s constitution, are defined in terms of Yin and Yang, which describe a spectrum of heat and cold. Chinese Medicine seeks to balance these two energies. Eating healthy and following the advice of a licensed acupuncturist knowledgeable about food therapy enables people to use food as the first line of defense to ward off common sicknesses and diseases.

Problem digestion can be caused by stress, poor nutrition, viruses/bacteria, food allergies, or dietary stress from eating heavily processed foods. Women may be particularly affected by digestive problems related to hormonal fluctuations. Despite all these stressors, there are some simple, effective things a patient can do to support healthy, comfortable digestion:

Try to eat in a relaxed state. Stress routes blood away from the digestive system, slows the metabolic process, and prevents proper nutrient absorption.

Breathe deeply while you eat. Oxygen helps you metabolize more quickly and efficiently.

Eat quality food. Poor quality food leaves your body wanting for more nutrients, and will signal your body to eat more in order to get these nutrients. This can lead to dissatisfaction with meals as well as overeating.

Pay attention to eating. If you are distracted when you eat, you may not absorb nutrients at an optimal rate, you are likely to overeat, and you can upset the digestive process.

Eat regularly. Eating at regular, frequent intervals helps the body digest, and prevents the body from going into a stressed state. Regular eating also keeps your metabolism from slowing.

Eat with joy and pleasure. The chemicals released in your body during times of joy and pleasure help you digest properly and efficiently. You will absorb more nutrients, and avoid weight gain that results from stress hormones overloading the body.

If you are looking for further support for digestive distress, Traditional Chinese Medicine is extremely effective in diagnosing and treating digestive problems. Chinese herbal remedies can strengthen the digestive system, and work to bring the body back into balance. Acupuncture needling supports healthy digestion by reducing stress, supporting immune function, and restoring hormonal balance.Often, some patients will notice a drastic change in their digestive symptoms even during their first treatment; with continued herbs and acupuncture treatment, symptoms like bloating, gas, constipation or pain can be eliminated and the patient can experience a drastic reduction in the .recurrence of symptoms

You may be diagnosed with one of the following deficiences, and dietary recommendations are helpful in adjusting certain food intake: