13 Nov Why Acupuncture and Nutritional therapy – Benefits of Integrative medicine
Acupuncture and nutritional therapy. One is based on a traditional medicine from 4,000 years ago and the other based on most up to date scientific research. How do these two practices work so well together? Why would I need either of these if I have a primary care doctor?
After working 15 years in the western medical world as a Pediatric ICU nurse, I realized that western medicine doesn’t have all the answers. That taking a prescription doesn’t always work, may not completely resolve the issue and/or may even cause different issues.
Now I’m not saying that acupuncture or nutritional therapy on their own can solve all the health problems. What we need to realize is that our health issues did not come from a single source. Our state of health today is determined by our genetics, environment, diet, social relationships, and stress to name a few. When all we do is address the symptoms of our illness or disease, we are not addressing the underlying cause of the illness or disease. This can also be referred to as symptoms are the branches, and the underlying cause is the root of the tree.
I believe that using more than one way to resolve a health issue is the most efficient, economic and smartest way to approach it. Did you know that in the US, healthcare costs are $3.2 trillion. That works out to be $10,000 a year per person is spent on healthcare. The US is ranked #1 in healthcare spending. With that kind of spending you would expect us to have the best healthcare system, right? Wrong! Our healthcare system is rated 37th, and the US is rated 35th healthiest country. I believe we can do better. And the way to do that is through Integrative Medicine.
Complementary, Alternative, Integrative medicines? Aren’t they all the same?
Have you ever heard the term integrative medicine? Many people have heard the terms alternative medicine or complementary medicine.
Alternative Medicine: Refers to an approach to healing that is utilized in place of conventional therapies.
Complementary Medicine: Refers to healing modalities that are used to complement conventional therapies.
Integrative Medicine: Refers to an approach that combines practices and treatments with conventional therapies.
Integrative medicine describes the approach to health as a team approach. “Attacking the problem from different directions.” Alternative medicine is utilizing a holistic approach instead of western medicine. That’s not working together. Complementary sounds a little better, but again, one approach is stealing the spotlight.
The World Health Organization (WHO) defines health as “a state of complete physical, mental and social well being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.” In order to accomplish this, the patient needs to be an active participant. Integrative medicine puts the patient in the center of the picture and then looks at the full range of physical, emotional, mental, social, spiritual and environmental influences that have and could potentially affect the patient’s health. Then a personalized strategy is created with the patient. This means the patient and practitioner(s) are partners in healing the patient, promoting health and preventing illness. Together, acupuncture and nutritional therapy, work hand in hand to create this integrative medicine approach.
Acupuncture helps to bring your body into balance so it can heal itself. Your body is an amazing thing. It was meant to heal itself. For example, let’s say you cut your finger. A clot forms. Then a scab. Then underneath that scab your body is rebuilding the cells. Once it is all rebuilt, the scab falls off. You are healed!
If you have ever had acupuncture, you know that you may go in with a complaint of a migraine, but the practitioner asks you questions about everything going on with you. How is your digestion? What are your predominant emotions? How is your sleep? Do you feel hot or cold? Based on these answers the practitioner can determine what the underlying cause of your migraine. There could be 20 different Chinese medicine diagnoses of the underlying cause of your migraine. What your answers are to those questions helps the practitioner differentiate. This gives you a bio-individualized diagnosis and treatment.
In western medicine, if you were to go into an urgent care or emergency room with a migraine. They have a migraine/headache protocol. They start with the first drug on their list. If that doesn’t work they move to the second drug. And so on and so forth. The same treatment for everyone. Not attention to what is causing the headache/migraine.
I said that acupuncture helps to bring the body into balance. What causes the imbalance in the first place? It could be an injury, emotions, stress, or our DIET.
Raise your hand if you can admit that at some time in your life your diet was not as good as it could and should be.
Don’t be shy, no one is looking.
I’m guessing the majority of you raised your hand. I did.
Nutritional therapy looks at each person’s symptoms and their diet, and helps them to come up with a personalized plan to help them create more balance in their body. It may be changing their diet. May require some supplements to help with a nutrient deficiency or support the function of an organ, gland or tissue. Probably require some lifestyle changes of slowing down while eating or adding in more fun activities.
Doesn’t that make more sense instead of following a generalized diet that may or may not work, but definitely makes your feel hungry and deprived???
what are you waiting for?
I strongly believe in education, inspiration and empowerment. Teaching you about why you are having symptoms, how they are linked to what we see going on in your body, and steps you can take to help yourself. Inspiring you with small wins to get your to your goal. And empowering you to be in charge of your health. No practitioner will care about your health more than you do. And no practitioner can make the changes for you that need to happen. Only you can. That’s why we work as a team. I’m your coach, cheerleader and trainer! Doesn’t acupuncture and nutritional therapy sound like a great way to work towards your health goals.
If you are interested in addressing any of your health concerns with an integrative medicine approach and want to learn more, click here to schedule a 15 minute FREE discovery call. Do you want to start as soon as possible? Click here to book your initial comprehensive treatment.
If you want to follow my health journey, click here to read Part 1 of my health journey series.