Friday, November 9, 2012

Acupuncture and Joint Pain


As we get older our joints may stiffen and become prone to pain and injury. This wear and tear is seen in Chinese medicine as a stagnation of the circulation of blood and energy through the body, a lack of “moisture of the tendons”.  Fortunately, there are a number of different ways to counteract these problems. These include Chinese herbal remedies that promote circulation and reduce chronic inflammation, nutritional supplementation and changing the emphasis of our physical activity to be low impact on joints. When a particular joint becomes consistently painful as a result of Osteoarthritis or from a sports injury, acupuncture is a time-honored method of resolving pain and restoring normal range of motion.

When I started practice over ten years ago such claims would have would have caused a skeptical eyebrow to be raised within the medical community. Thanks to a number of studies, acupuncture for these kinds of conditions has entered the medical mainstream.

There are two more notable facts emerging from research. The first is that there have been studies using acupuncture for pain control in patients who were awaiting replacement of the hip and knee, who in spite of the advanced state of the disease received significant pain relief which in some cases alleviated the need for surgery and in more cases delayed the need for surgery which, given the lifespan of a replaced joint, can be a very important consideration.

And the second fact: acupuncturists have always recommended regular follow up visits in order to maintain or improve upon the progress made. This advice was confirmed by a study on chronic osteoarthritis of the knee carried out at the University of Maryland Medical School. In this study the group that had received acupuncture for the initial two-month period were further divided into a group that continued to have acupuncture one time per month for one year and a group that had no further treatment for a year. The first group either maintained or improved upon their initial gains in health whilst the non-treatment group showed a worsening of their pain scores.

Interested in learning more about acupuncture and your health?  Come to the Acupuncture Clinic of Richmond on Wednesday, October 24 for their Fall Open House in honor of National Acupuncture & Oriental Medicine Day!  visit www.debifarley.com for details.

© 2012 Deborah Farley, L.Ac, CHHC, DOM

Deborah Farley is a licensed acupuncturist, naturopath and owner of the Acupuncture Clinic of Richmond, in Richmond, Virginia. She's a leading authority on using nutrition and Chinese medicine for treating symptoms and root causes of illness.  For additional resources to improve your health and wellness, visit www.debifarley.com or call 804.288.3927.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine Day is October 24


In an effort to increase public awareness of the progress, promise, and benefits of acupuncture and Oriental medicine, AOM day is observed in the United States, Canada and Mexico by professional associations, research organizations and educational institutions. Many practitioners will host an open house, offer free lectures or even offer opportunities to sample acupuncture in observance of the day.

In the United States, the use of acupuncture and Oriental medicine is at an all-time high. According to a recent study conducted by the National Institutes of Health’s National Center for Complementary & Alternative Medicine (NCCAM), an estimated 36% of U.S. adults use some form of alternative therapy, and 25% have tried acupuncture. According to recent research, 64% of physicians have referred patients to certified practitioners of alternative therapies, including acupuncture and Oriental medicine, and more than $17 billion is spent on the therapies annually. 

These studies and others like them clearly demonstrate that CAM therapies such as acupuncture and Oriental medicine are common practice in today's health care system. They also support the need for consumers to be provided accurate and reliable information regarding their treatment options.

As the owner and founder of the Acupuncture Clinic of Richmond, we will be celebrating the holiday with a Community Open House.   Throughout the day, we’ll offer free talks, demonstrations, door prizes, and literature.  For details and further information, visit www.debifarley.com or call 804 288 3927.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Acupuncture Helps Irritability


Do you ever feel like you just want to scream?  Shout to the roof tops? We all suffer from irritability and moodiness from time to time, but if you find irritability is ongoing and a consequence of chronic stress in your life, then acupuncture may be a great solution for you.

Over time if your emotions aren’t released and imbalances corrected, you may find yourself dealing with more serious emotional conditions such as anxiety and depression.  Physical conditions such as digestive problems, trouble sleeping and the tendency to get sick more frequently can also result and lead to further stressors that just repeat this viscous cycle of imbalance.

According to Traditional Chinese Medicine, emotional disorders can be associated with a number of different patterns, however, anger, irritability, and frustration are all signs that our blood and qi (life force) is not flowing smoothly. The liver is responsible for the smooth flowing of blood and qi (life force) throughout our body and for calming our emotions. When the function of your liver is stagnant or disrupted, qi can become stuck. This is referred to as liver qi stagnation.

Liver qi stagnation is one of the most common patterns of disharmony seen in today's patients. In addition to irritability and moodiness, signs and symptoms may include: pain in the area below the ribs, stuffiness of the chest, sighing, abdominal distention, nausea, sour regurgitation, belching, diarrhea or constipation, feeling of a lump in the throat, irregular periods, painful periods, and distention of the breasts prior to periods. Liver qi stagnation is commonly associated with PMS.

Acupuncture and Oriental medicine are excellent at relieving liver qi stagnation. Treatment for irritability and moodiness associated with liver qi stagnation focuses on moving qi and supporting the liver and spleen organ systems with acupuncture, lifestyle and nutritional recommendations.

Learn more about how acupuncture and Oriental medicine can be integrated into your emotional and physical wellness plan!  An individualized treatment plan can help you feel better quickly and safely.


Deborah Farley is a licensed acupuncturist, naturopath and owner of the Acupuncture Clinic of Richmond, in Richmond, Virginia. She's a leading authority on using nutrition and Chinese medicine for treating symptoms and root causes of illness.  For additional resources to improve your health and wellness, visit www.debifarley.com or call 804.288.3927.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

A Natural Facelift?


If you're concerned that your youthful appearance has fallen by the wayside, you may want to consider a natural, non-surgical “refresher” – cosmetic acupuncture.

So what is Cosmetic Acupuncture? The protocol I have been most impressed with is the Mei Zen (beautiful person) Acupuncture System. After a series of 10 treatments (twice a week for five weeks), skin becomes more delicate, fine lines begin to fade, there is less sagginess and droopy eyelids, and there’s an overall improvement of skin texture and tone. And, as an added benefit, patients report an overall rejuvenation that is not confined to the face. Patients leave sessions feeling more relaxed, focused and even report improved sleep and overall energy levels throughout the day.

Chinese medicine is so advanced in terms of “anti-aging” solutions.  The underlying principles are about restoring natural beauty from the inside out. This ancient approach has worked for thousands of years, freeing up chi (energy) and improving circulation. When performing any type of cosmetic acupuncture the needles in the face are inserted at a shallower depth than in regular acupuncture.  This creates micro traumas in the body that increase the production of collagen and elastin.  This is the same process that happens when you cut your finger and new skin starts to grow.  In addition , there are meridians (pathway of energy) that run through the face and make connections to internal organs. Stimulation of specific points along these meridians balances the body and treats the underlying factors of aging process.

What are the benefits of Mei Zen Acupuncture?   

•Increases collagen production
•Reduces larger wrinkles and eliminates fine ones
•Tightens skin pores
•Prevents sagging, eye drooping
•Radiates skin, brighter eyes
•Diminishes breakouts, acne and more
•Healthier body and sense of well-being

To learn more about Mei Zen Acupuncture, visit www.debifarley.com.

Deborah Farley is a licensed acupuncturist, naturopath and owner of the Acupuncture Clinic of Richmond, in Richmond, Virginia. She's a leading authority on using nutrition and Chinese medicine for treating symptoms and root causes of illness.  For additional resources to improve your health and wellness, visit www.debifarley.com or call 804.288.3927.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Acupuncture Keeps Menstrual Pain at Bay


Are you still suffering from cramping, mood swings and bloating on a monthly basis?  Menstrual symptoms can range from mild to severe, and when they happen on a regular basis they can have a serious impact on your quality of life.   And, while many women resort to an over-the-counter pain killer to find relief, a German study following 201 women has shown that acupuncture offers a valid alternative.

The research was conducted at Charité University Medical Center in Berlin, and studied 201 women who agreed to randomly receive acupuncture or no treatment.  After a three month period, which included an average of 10 acupuncture sessions, 63 percent of the women receiving this treatment reported at least a 33 percent improvement in their symptoms, compared with 24 percent of women in the control group. Researchers concluded that acupuncture can render benefits to women suffering from menstrual discomfort and should be considered by health insurance companies as a viable option for treatment.

Source: American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology, 2008

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Relieve Hot Flashes with Acupuncture


A small, yet intriguing study published in Acupuncture in Medicine found that traditional Chinese acupuncture curbed the severity of hot flashes and other menopausal symptoms. Fifty-three middle-aged, postmenopausal women were divided into two groups; one received such treatments twice weekly for 10 weeks, while the other experienced “sham” acupuncture with blunt needles that did not penetrate the skin. In both groups, levels of estrogen and other hormones were measured before the study began and before and after the last session. Menopausal symptoms—hot flashes, vaginal dryness, urinary tract infections and mood swings—were also measured before and after the treatments, using a five-point menopause rating scale (MRS) in order to assess their severity.

At the end of the study, the women receiving Chinese acupuncture scored significantly lower on the MRS scale, with hot flashes seeing the sharpest decrease. The researchers explain that acupuncture boosts production of endorphins, which may stabilize the temperature control system of the body. They say that more investigation is needed because the study was small, but note that its results seem promising, suggesting that traditional Chinese acupuncture could be an alternative for women unable or unwilling to use hormone replacement therapy to relieve menopausal symptoms.

Source:  This article appeared in the May 2012 issue of Natural Awakenings magazine.

Deborah Farley is a licensed acupuncturist, naturopath and owner of the Acupuncture Clinic of Richmond, in Richmond, Virginia. She's a leading authority on using nutrition and Chinese medicine for treating symptoms and root causes of illness.  For additional resources to improve your health and wellness, visit www.debifarley.com or call 804.288.3927.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Power of “Letting Go”


What is it about all this “stuff” in our lives?  Maybe we accumulate things because they hold precious memories, or they remind us of our parents, past romances or childhood.  To part with these possessions seems out of the question.  But there’s a saying that I’ve always liked, “You have to get rid of the old to make way for the new.”  And if you’re feeling stagnant in your life, it may be time to let a few things go and welcome the new energy that’s just waiting to come into your life.
We actually have two “homes” that need to be cleaned regularly: our physical homes and our physical bodies. Just as we accumulate “stuff” around our homes, so do our bodies accumulate food residues and toxins.  And, although our bodies are equipped with a wide variety of organs designed to rid harmful toxins, these organs are most efficient when we provide the right nutrients to do this arduous job.

To fully clean your body, it’s important to give our organs a break from rich and complicated foods by either cleansing or fasting for a short period of time. Cleansing means paring down your food to just simple fruits and vegetables, lots of water and select whole grains. Fasting means the limitation of most foods and replacing them with lots of water, fresh vegetable and fruit juices, teas and soups. By limiting the energy going toward digestion, more energy is available to the rest of your body and mind, helping you sharpen your concentration improve your immune function and enhance digestion.

While you’re cleaning out your body and home, don’t forget to clean your heart. Throw away negative thoughts and habits you’ve been harboring that no longer serve you. A clean, open heart will allow you to receive all the good that awaits you each and every day. If your heart and mind are cluttered, there is no room for life’s gifts and surprises to enter.

© 2012 Deborah Farley, L.Ac, CHHC, DOM

Deborah Farley is a licensed acupuncturist, naturopath and owner of the Acupuncture Clinic of Richmond, in Richmond, Virginia. She's a leading authority on using nutrition and Chinese medicine for treating symptoms and root causes of illness.  For additional resources to improve your health and wellness, visit www.debifarley.com or call 804.288.3927.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Acupuncture Eases Unexplained Symptoms


Peninsula Medical School, at the University of Exeter conducted research on 80 patients who experienced headaches, muscle pain, extreme fatigue or joint and back pain to determine the effectiveness of acupuncture on their ailments. The study, led by Professor Andrew Gould, followed 80 adults who had consulted their general practitioner eight or more times in the prior year for these various unexplained symptoms. Half of the group received up to 12 sessions of five-element acupuncture treatments during a six month period; the remainder received no extra treatment.

The patients receiving acupuncture reported improved well-being and scored higher on an individualized health status questionnaire than the control group. They reported that their acupuncture consultations became increasingly valuable and that the interactive and holistic nature of the sessions gave them a sense that something positive was being done about their condition.

Professor Andrew Gould said it is important to offer patients other options when conventional medicine isn’t working. “We don’t know how acupuncture is making a difference, but it seems to be something to do with the treatment, rather than just a placebo or the one-to-one care the patients are getting,” explained Gould.  The study was the first of its kind in the United Kingdom.

Source:  The research results were published in The British Journal of General Practice.

Deborah Farley is a licensed acupuncturist, naturopath and owner of the Acupuncture Clinic of Richmond, in Richmond, Virginia.  To learn more about improving your health and wellness, visit www.debifarley.com or call 804.288.3927.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Make the Switch to Natural Sweeteners


Who among us doesn’t love sweets? The sweet flavor releases serotonin in our brains, the chemical responsible for our sense of well-being and contentment. But when it comes to sweeteners, not all are created equal. There are side effects and health risks from refined sweeteners like white table sugar and high-fructose corn syrup, and from artificial sweeteners like NutraSweet, saccharin and Splenda. Since refined sweeteners have been stripped of vitamins, minerals and fiber, they can spike blood sugar, which can often lead to cravings and mood and energy fluctuations. Instead, using naturally and minimally processed sweeteners can reduce cravings for sugary things.

Here are a few natural sweeteners to substitute in drinks, food and baking. Since they are all approximately 1.5 times sweeter than refined sugar, you can use less. You can find them in most supermarkets or natural food stores. When replacing sugar with liquid sweeteners in a recipe, reduce the amounts of other liquids.

Raw Honey
Everyone seems to love honey, one of the oldest natural sweeteners on the market. Honey will have a different flavor depending on the plant source. Some are very dark and intensely flavored. Wherever possible, choose raw honey, as it is unrefined and contains small amounts of enzymes, minerals and vitamins.   Also choose local honey as it can aid in reducing and eliminating seasonal allergies. 

Fruit
Fruit is the most natural form of sugar available.  Our bodies know exactly how to assimilate it.  Fruits whether fresh or dried have been used in recipes for hundreds of years.  Also you can use fresh fruit juices in many recipes as well.
 
Maple Syrup
Maple syrup is the concentrated extract of the sap of maple trees. It adds a rich, deep flavor to foods and drinks. Make sure to look for 100% Grade B pure maple syrup, not maple-flavored corn syrup. As with all 
sweeteners, organic varieties are best.

Adapted from "The Cane Mutiny," New Age Magazine, March/April 1999.

Deborah Farley is a licensed acupuncturist, naturopath and owner of the Acupuncture Clinic of Richmond, in Richmond, Virginia. She's a leading authority on using nutrition and Chinese medicine for treating symptoms and root causes of illness.  For additional resources to improve your health and wellness, visit www.debifarley.com or call 804.288.3927.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Oriental Medicine and Autumn Allergies


Oriental medicine has been used to treat allergies for hundreds of years. Several studies have confirmed that acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine can be helpful for allergic conditions such as asthma, eczema, and food allergies.

Some foods contain the flavanoid, quersetin that can cross-react with tree pollen. Quercetin can reduce allergic reactions by having an antihistamine effect. It also decreases inflammation.  Quercetin is found in certain foods, such as apples (with the skin), berries, red grapes, red onions, capers, and black tea.

In a study published in Allergy, 52 people with allergic rhinitis were randomly assigned acupuncture treatments and Chinese herbal tea or sham acupuncture and herbs for six weeks. Nearly 85 percent or the people receiving the real acupuncture and herbs had 100 percent or significant improvement of their symptoms, versus 40 percent of those getting the placebo treatment.

Spice up your menu! Remember to use plenty of spicy additions to raise your body temperature, which ultimately draws heat OUT to the surface where it’s released as perspiration, eliminating toxins and impurities.  Try adding spices that range from mild to hot (fresh ginger to cayenne pepper) and use in menus as well as summertime beverages.  Spicy dishes can thin mucus secretions and clear nasal passages.  Ginger is a natural antihistamine and decongestant. It may provide some relief from allergy symptoms by dilating constricted bronchial tubes.

Food intolerances also seem to be connected with seasonal allergies. A healthy colon can decrease food sensitivity, which can, in turn, lighten the burden on your immune system. To support your colon health, increase fiber and add active probiotics that can restore the balance between good and bad bacteria in your gastrointestinal (GI) tract.  

If you suffer from allergies and are interested in using acupuncture and/or are curious to learn about eating the right nutrition to best support your individual health, contact the Acupuncture Clinic of Richmond at 804.288.3927.

Deborah Farley is a licensed acupuncturist, naturopath and owner of the Acupuncture Clinic of Richmond, in Richmond, Virginia. She's a leading authority on using nutrition and Chinese medicine for treating symptoms and root causes of illness.  For additional resources to improve your health and wellness, visit www.debifarley.com or call 804.288.3927.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Autumn Health: Lungs and Large Intestine


Autumn is the season to nourish and detoxify the lungs and large intestine.   Your lungs are your first line of defense against unhealthy air. When you’re relaxed, you breathe in oxygen approximately fifteen times per minute.  In order for your lungs to be able to eliminate carbon dioxide, it’s essential that your lungs are functioning properly.  When your lungs aren’t functioning properly, your body accumulates heat, which can perpetuate all sorts of health issues, including allergies, frequent colds, neck pain, reduced immunity, sinusitis, excessive perspiration- even melancholy.

Equally important to your health this time of year is the large intestine.  It is divided into three parts:  The caecum, where your appendix is attached; colons—ascending, transverse, descending and sigmoid; and the rectum.  When the large intestine is constipated you may experience skin rashes, acne, dry skin and eczema.  When constipated, waste creates a toxic state that shows up as bloating, gas, headaches and irritability.   Autumn is a particularly good time of year to focus on caring for your large intestine.  Pay attention to your diet and eliminate foods that are rich in sugar, flour, dairy products, alcohol, and caffeine – all of these can aggravate your gut and large intestine.   Instead, build your meals around foods to support the health and function of both your lung and large intestines. 

Here are a few items to regularly keep on your Autumn shopping list:

FRUITS:  apple, blackberry, fig, pear, plum, date

VEGETABLES: bell pepper, broccoli, garlic, leeks, onions, pumpkin, red cabbage, shallot, squash, sweet potato, turnip, yam

GRAINS:  amaranth, barley, buckwheat, millet, quinoa, rye

NUTS: almond, brazil, cashew, pecan, pistachio, walnut

BEANS:  adzuki, black, carob, garbanzo, kidney, lentil, lima

SEEDS:  flax, pumpkin, sesame, sunflower

If you want to learn about eating the right combination of foods to best support your individual health needs and goals, schedule time with Debi by calling 804.288.3927 or email debi@debifarley.com.

Deborah Farley is a licensed acupuncturist, naturopath and owner of the Acupuncture Clinic of Richmond, in Richmond, Virginia. She's a leading authority on using nutrition and Chinese medicine for treating symptoms and root causes of illness.  For additional resources to improve your health and wellness, visit www.debifarley.com or call 804.288.3927.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Declutter Your Health


I’m often asked the question how often one should detox to clear out the “junk” that accumulates in our body.  Sure, our bodies are equipped to regularly detox and eliminate toxins, but I believe there’s considerable value in refueling and replenishing our bodies with a nutritional cleanse that will best support our ability to do this efficiently.  But deciding how often you should do a detox should be based on your individual choice and lifestyle.  It should also be based on what your health goals are and whether you do a “mini detox” at various other times throughout the year.  

Many people choose to detox once or twice a year for a lengthy period of time, while others choose to do short cleanses such as one to three days several times a year.   A short detox tends to include activities like juicing, water fasting, or the popular master cleanse.  A short detox usually occurs once a week, once a month, or once every couple of months.  Some also choose a more structured program if they’ve recently undergone a major change to their body or are trying to heal or reverse a medical condition.  

My personal belief is that it is good to do a detoxification program at least twice per year.  It doesn’t matter what length of time or how often you decide to do a detoxification program; you are still reaping great benefits from doing so.  The bottom line is to simply listen to your body and remember to get the expertise and support to guide you along the way.  

If you’re interested in learning more about the detox programs that serve as the basis for my RESET to Wellness programs, check out these upcoming opportunities:
If you live in the Richmond, Virginia area - register to attend a FREE one-hour talk/overview on September 6 at the Acupuncture Clinic of Richmond.

If you live outside of this area, send me an email at debi@debifarley.com and schedule a free 10-minute consult by phone to review the different programs that we have available, and what would make the most sense for you.  

Deborah Farley is a licensed acupuncturist, naturopath and owner of the Acupuncture Clinic of Richmond, in Richmond, Virginia. She's a leading authority on using nutrition and Chinese medicine for treating symptoms and root causes of illness.  For additional resources to improve your health and wellness, visit www.debifarley.com or call 804.288.3927.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Do you Suffer from Adrenal Fatigue?


Are you one of the many who suffer from a common condition known as adrenal fatigue? The adrenals are endocrine glands the size of walnuts which are located on top of the kidneys. The outer layers are known to create more than 30 hormones or hormone-like substances which are integrated into virtually every function of the body.  The inner part of the adrenal gland is an extension of nerve tissue providing quick jolts of energy to help us handle “emergencies.”  Unfortunately, our busy lifestyle seems like one emergency after another to our adrenal glands, so they end up getting exhausted and overworked. And without healthy adrenal glands we suffer.

Think of your adrenals as if they were muscles. Muscles contract when a need arises and relax when the need passes. Constant stressful stimulation of the adrenals ultimately leads to adrenal exhaustion. Try holding even a small hand weight straight out from your body – it won’t take long before your arm will fatigue.  Similarly, the adrenals will respond to stress and fatigue if not given an opportunity to “relax”, rand restore function. In this way, constant stress leads to the loss of normal adrenal function. 

How can your diet support healthy adrenal function?   You can first focus on eliminating or reducing the triggers that are counter supportive to healthy function.  These include: refined carbohydrates – junk foods – physical and mental strain – sleep deprivation – environmental toxins – trauma / injury – anger – fear – worry – stress/anxiety – overworking – noise pollution – Inflammation – infections – nutritional deficiencies – food allergies – low blood sugar.

Take positive steps to support and nurture your adrenals by

  • Eating fresh whole foods and plenty of dark green vegetables
  • Learning how to breathe properly
  • Getting to bed early and enjoying a deep, restful sleep
  • Purifying your body of toxins as they build up in your body systems
  • Correcting any allergies or food sensitivities
  • Enjoying regular, gentle exercises like stretching and walking
  • Taking time to relax and meditate every day
  • Eating your food slowly and intentionally
  • Regularly scheduling downtime or “mini-vacations” on your calendar



Contact me to find out more about these action steps toward wellness.  Email debi@debifarley.com

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

DOING, DOING, DOING by Vickie Griffith


Do you have this insatiable urge to always be "doing"?  A drive to be busy and to stay busy? You may know where this drive came from. Or, it may be just the way you have always been.

Two ten year-old best girlfriends are lying on the floor, in front of the fan on a hot summer's day reading. One of the girl's mothers runs into the room yelling to get outside and help weed the garden. The little girl's 10 year-old brain interprets mom's request as a criticism that she is lazy and unproductive.

From that moment on, a belief was created to always be doing something productive. Reading was not productive. After all, there was nothing tangible produced? 

I was that 10 year-old little girl and that belief carried on with me throughout my life to always be "doing." The belief is that I have to always be doing something that produces something real. But what is real? What counts as "real"?

This mindset keeps us stuck. DOING, DOING, DOING keeps us running in the hamster wheel but never getting anywhere. Yes, we are busy but not necessarily productive.

The funny thing is, in my business and for many other women I know, there is rarely anything tangible produced on an everyday basis. Feelings of failed accomplishment or productivity flood our thoughts. Yet many "doing" activities are vital at maintaining or growing a business.

Changing the mindset for the value of doing and the activities that don't' produce a tangible product is important to building a foundation for success in the future. Regardless if you are building a business, juggling work and life schedules -- "doing" is necessary! Switching the mindset from the outcome needs to be productive to being mindful of the activities. Be present in the moment.

Celebrate not only what you got done but the process of "doing".  This will get you unstuck and out of the hamster wheel.

Need a little help getting unstuck? Join Vickie for a free Teleseminar, "How to Move from Sad, Broke, and Stuck...to Happy, Wealthy, and Free" on Thursday, August 16. Get all the details here: www.stuckedup.com

Friday, July 27, 2012

Favorite Raw Reads

There are books you read, and then there are books that can change your life. When it comes to finding books that will help you make changes to the way you eat, one of the key "ingredients" to being successful with your new effort, is to build a collection of recipes that you enjoy making, eating and sharing. This is especially true if you wanted to start integrating more live and raw foods into your diet.  

Below are a just few books that I find myself turning to over and over for great recipes, new ideas, loads of resources or just for the fun of reading!  

What are some of your favorite raw books?

                   



Tuesday, July 24, 2012

My Morning Pick-me-up Juice

Are you a morning juice drinker? Growing up, I always thought “morning juice” referred to small glass of orange juice or perhaps cranberry or apple. I remember spending the night at my friend’s home and drinking freshly squeezed orange juice. But now as an adult, I have an entirely new perspective of what a “morning juice” can be.

Now, let me preface this by saying that I don't hold any disdain for fruit juice. I use it in marinades, dressings, and baked goods. But when it comes to a tall glass for breakfast, I’d rather have a tall glass of freshly blended veggies as my morning pick-me-up juice any day. 

Here’s one of my favorites:


Morning Pick-me-Up Juice (Makes 1 quart)
  • 1 English cucumber 
  • 1/2 head of celery 
  • 2 limes peeled 
  • 1/2 jalapeño pepper with seeds removed 
  • 1granny smith apple 
  • Handful of cilantro
  • Beet greens from one bunch of beets 
    Run through the juicer and enjoy!

Friday, July 20, 2012

Acupuncture Points for Good Summertime Health

Did you know that energy circulation can be increased by rubbing acupuncture points with your finger? All you need is 30-60 seconds. 

Here are 3 acupuncture points you can gently massage to help you stay healthy this summer:

·         Small intestine 17- This is the indentation below the ear lobe and behind the jawbone. This can relieve hives, improve skin’s luster, and balance the thyroid, as well as relieve facial spasms, itching ears, swollen throat, and nausea.

·         Small intestine 15 -This can alleviate asthma, coughing, back pain, chills, and fever.

·         Heart 3-  Between the elbow crease and the inside of the humorous bone, stimulation of this point can alleviate poor memory, depression, anxiety, red eyes, arm tremors, and elbow pain.


 Interested in learning more about acupuncture? Visit www.debifarley.com

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Summer is Ruled by Fire



In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), there is a healing methodology related to the seasons and the Five Elements: Wood, Fire, Earth, Metal, and Water.  

Summer is ruled by the Fire element and is associated with the heart, small intestine and tongue.  It is also a period of maximum activity or greatest yang, which means that there’s increased heat, extroversion, and moving outward in nature and in our lives.

According to TCM, the Heart houses the Shen, which is the mind, memory, consciousness, and spirit.  While these activities are attributed to the brain in Western medicine, we tend to intuitively know that the Heart is also an organ of feeling or spirituality.  In fact much of our language refers to the heart as an organ of feeling.  Phrases such as someone “knowing things in your heart” or having a “broken heart” are speaking to an emotional organ rather than simply a muscle that pumps blood.  Of course, the heart does move blood throughout your entire body, but in TCM that function is secondary to its job of housing the Shen.  So, your heart can be said to impact your physical health, mind and spiritual growth and awareness.
During the summer season, be aware of how Fire is affecting you.  An imbalance may be evident in you physically, emotionally and/or spiritually.

Emotionally, if you have an imbalance, you may find that you’re either lacking joy (depression), or experiencing an excess of joy (maniac condition).

Physically, you may be experiencing palpitations, profuse sweating, hypertension, agitation, insomnia or sores on the mouth and tongue. 

It’s important to think about protecting your heart in multiple levels or layers.  Maintaining a peaceful and balanced Heart helps ensure the health of your entire being.

A Simple TCM Heart Exercise:  Smiling from Your Heart

This ancient exercise is one of the most powerful things you can do for the health of your Heart: Stand or sit facing a mirror. Now smile at yourself—really smile at yourself—directly from your heart. That's it! How simple and yet how difficult this practice is for most people. Judgmental thoughts often enter our mind and prevent us from experiencing healing. True smiling from the heart, not just a fake smile, actually has a profound physiological effect.  Once you've mastered this exercise, then try smiling at others from your heart.

Nourish your heart and small intestine by balancing your sun exposure with shade, drinking plenty of water, and eating light, cooling foods.


©2012 Debi Farley | www.debifarley.com  


Debi Farley is a licensed acupuncturist, naturopath and owner of the Acupuncture Clinic of Richmond, in Richmond, Virginia. To create optimal mind/body wellness, you need specialized information, expertise and experienced teachers. Debi works with and helps individuals achieve optimal health through her private practice and educational workshops.



Monday, July 9, 2012

Improving Athletic Performance with Acupuncture


Athletes are often searching for ways to improve performance and gain a competitive edge. By following the principles of Oriental medicine, an acupuncture treatment can put you in the best possible position to give you just that.

Acupuncture can strengthen your body function, improve the flow of blood to specific areas of the body and helps to restore the internal harmony that takes place when you hear about athletes "getting in the zone." You need all of your body systems working harmoniously together and at a very high level. I'm reading more and more about professional sports teams and top athletes who regularly have an acupuncturist on staff. In fact, some of the best Olympic athletes are incorporating acupuncture into their wellness programs. China's 7 foot 6 inch basketball center, Yao Ming, used acupuncture and Oriental medicine to help him recover after undergoing surgery on his ankle in April, 2007

In what other ways can acupuncture help?

Acupuncture is also effective in alleviating pain, promoting healing and decreasing inflammation, swelling, and spasms. Because of its broad range of applications, acupuncture can be used during any of the phases of injury. Acupuncture focuses not only on treating the injury but also on treating the underlying conditions that may make someone more susceptible to injuries.

Some Commonly Treated Sports Injuries:

·         Muscle Pull
·         Neck Pain
·         Shoulder Impingement
·         Tennis Elbow
·         Lower Back Strain
·         Groin Pull
·         Hamstring Strain
·         Runner's Knee
·         Shin Splints
·         Ankle Sprain
·         Achilles Tendonitis
·         Arch Pain

Sports injuries are most often caused by trauma (from a fall or blow) or overuse/misuse of certain muscles and the neighboring structures.   If you have a preexisting or new sports injury that’s preventing your training or recreational goals, acupuncture and Chinese medicine can help.  Don’t let sports injuries keep you from enjoying life!
For more information, visit www.debifarley.com or call 804.288.3927.

©Debi Farley 2012, Debi Farley is a licensed acupuncturist, naturopath and owner of the Acupuncture Clinic of Richmond, in Richmond, Virginia. To create optimal mind/body wellness, you need specialized information, expertise and experienced teachers. Debi works with and helps individuals achieve optimal health through her private practice and educational workshops.