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Plants have been used for medicinal purposes long before recorded history and herbal medicine has its roots in every culture around the world. Using plants as medicine provides significant advantages for treating many conditions. The therapeutic activity of a plant is due to its complex chemical nature with different parts of the plant providing certain therapeutic effects.  Like acupuncture, herbal medicine addresses the whole person (not just symptoms) and is used for promoting health as well as preventing and treating illness.  ​During the course of your treatment I may suggest herbal formulas or nutritional supplements if I think they will assist your healing process.

 

Chinese medicine has always recognized that foods produce different effects in the body when eaten by different individuals. Just as two people seeking treatment for headaches will likely be given different acupuncture and herbal medicine because the root cause of their headaches is unique, there is no universal food pyramid that works for everyone.  I will help you diagnose imbalances in your body and then recommend specific foods you should eat in abundance, which foods to moderate, and which foods to avoid for therapeutic effects in the body and mind.

I believe in using food as medicine and that nutritional guidelines need to be specific to you as an individual. There is no one-size-fits-all approach to the best way to eat because each of us has different body constitutions.  I assist my patients in making positive and permanent lifestyle changes that are specifically designed for individual needs and goals.

Eating a broad range of nourishing foods is what I recommend for optimal wellness. Variety truly is the spice of a healthy life. The goal is for you to find a balanced and authentic way to eat for the long-term. I rarely advocate restrictive, limited diets because they don’t work. If it feels unnatural, forced, or excessively uncomfortable there is almost no chance of the nutritional program becoming a sustainable habit.

Our relationship with food, our family/peers, and environment has much to do with how well we are managing stress, expressing our emotions, and maintaining awareness of our core beliefs. We turn to food, people, substances, and various behaviors for immediate gratification and comfort, which often points to a much deeper imbalance.  My goal is to help you work on this deeper level so you can make lasting changes that will bring you the energy, focus, and wellbeing you desire.  

Acupuncture

Acupuncture is an important component of Chinese medicine – an ancient healing modality based on strengthening the innate intelligence of the body to cultivate and support a natural state of health – a state of balance.  It is in this state of balance that we are healthy and vibrant. Although a state of true homeostasis doesn't really exist our bodies are always seeking to auto-regulate towards a more balanced state. 

 

Acupuncture stimulates the body’s ability to resist or overcome illnesses and conditions by correcting imbalances and restoring auto-regulatory processes.  You might think of this auto-regulation as your unique system of checks and balances or your internal thermostat.  We can learn to observe the cascade of events that occur when one system is in overdrive or slow motion.  From here we seek to re-establish health by encouraging the body to harmonize relationships between the internal and external environments and what systems need to be nurtured to embolden a more balanced state via auto-regulation.  Your body knows how to heal itself and it really wants to do just that.  Sometimes all we really need to do is listen to the directives our disease/pain/discomfort is conveying.  

 

Like Western medicine, Chinese medicine is a science, but one which focuses on treating the root of disease, not just symptoms. Acupuncture treatment is based on a holistic system that addresses the whole person and is thus effective for almost all physical and psychological conditions.  

At your initial acupuncture treatment I will review your medical/health history and ask detailed questions to formulate your individualized treatment plan.  I see each person I work with as a unique individual and each treatment is based on your specific needs. Because I place a high value on integration, in our time together I will incorporate a spectrum of healing modalities to address all the layers of your being: body, mind, and spirit.  In addition to acupuncture your session may also include moxibustion “moxa” (a heat therapy), cupping, gua-sha, tuina (adjunctive therapies to acupuncture that alleviate pain and treat chronic and acute conditions), herbal/dietary/lifestyle counseling and recommendations.

Follow-up treatments are usually scheduled after the initial session. These treatments are for established patients. We will discuss progress, changes, and address any questions or concerns. This information allows me to continue with treatments that focus on your individual needs for long-term relief and healing. In addition to acupuncture your session may also include moxibustion (a heat therapy), cupping, gua-sha, tuina (adjunctive therapies to acupuncture that alleviate pain and treat chronic and acute conditions), herbal/dietary/lifestyle counseling and recommendations.

 

Herbs/Nutrition/Lifestyle

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Mary Helen Robert, LAc

acupuncture & wellness