Many of our acupuncture patients ask us for recommendations on dietary changes, nutritional supplements, and weight loss and detoxification programs. There’s so much information on the internet and media that it bewilders many people, including sometimes ourselves as we read through new medical literature and research that we encounter daily.
Health: We tell our patients that springtime is a great opportunity to commit to healthier eating and living. We have patients who come for acupuncture for all kinds of disorders and health concerns – from arthritis, headaches and other pain conditions to fertility problems, digestive disorders, allergies and emotional problems. One thing they have in common is a desire to feel fit and healthy, generally to lose weight and exercise more, and to live a life of balance and harmony. With acupuncture treatment most patients get a very powerful initial response and then are ready to greater changes in their lives.
Exercise: There are several simple and cost-effective ways to improve one’s health at this time of year. More exercise is an important piece. No need to become a gym rat or body builder. Rigorous exercise combing cardio-vascular conditioning with moderate weight training three times weekly, alternated with three days of less vigorous exercise such as a 3 mile walk is very efficient for most. By building up to interval training where you alternate 3 minutes of intense cardio effort with 3 minutes of cool-down several times weekly is a great fitness goal. It’s also important to get outside several times weekly and be exposed to sunshine. If you have allergies then acupuncture can take care of most symptoms.
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Nutrition: The best food ad vice we give is to reduce carbs and fatty meats and introduce lean meats, poultry and fish with dark leafy greens. These cool-weather vegetables are inexpensive and plentiful this time of year. They are excellent for detoxification eaten raw, lightly steamed or sautéed, or in juices. These include kale, spinach, watercress, bok choy, cabbage, arugula, dark lettuce, dandelion greens and collard greens.
Drinks + Body: Another excellent addition is drinking apple cider vinegar. One tablespoon of Bragg’s or other organic apple cider vinegar in 6-8 oz. water daily will alkalzye and detoxify. Hydrate well by drinking 64 oz. filtered or spring water daily. Using a loofah sponge to scrub your skin thoroughly while in the shower stimulates your skin and circulation. Do this twice weekly for 6 weeks.
Sleep: And here’s another vital tip: get sufficient sleep. Most of our acupuncture patients are sleep-deprived. So many health benefits accrue with getting 8 hours sleep regularly.
Finally, take time every day to appreciate the budding trees, the flowers, birds and wildlife. Walk barefoot on the grass and breathe slowly and deeply. If you do all these things and let us take care of you with acupuncture, you will flourish with great health and vitality this spring. It will definitely boost you for the months and seasons ahead.