Holistic Care

Holistic care refers to healthcare that tries to integrate the whole person rather than symptom based `comprehensive` care that tends to look at one symptom at a time. Persons with chronic disease often experience an involvement of multiple body systems. A comprehensive care approach to patient care is often used with the belief that a health care team will ensure that a patient’s needs will be covered. Instead, this approach is reductionist in practice and leads to fragmentation of care, and the difficult patients often slip through the cracks of the health care system. However, a holistic theory-based approach puts a patient’s perceived needs first and offers care not only for the body but also for the human spirit.

“The RBG Workout” by Bryant Johnson shows you how to get strong so you can be your best.

After seeing the movie RBG at a local theatre, I was impressed with this dynamo RBG and wrote to her trainer. He sent me a t shirt and copy of his book. I have referred several of my chiropractic and acupuncture clients to the book, and bought more copies for the office. It is my contention that working out in the manner outlined in this compact book will heal most people remarkably well. When combined with other natural healing methods, exercise is a powerhouse- just like Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

In his book RBG Workout, trainer Bryant Johnson concisely describes how he came to work with the famous Justice RBG following her first bout with cancer 18 years ago. Her husband told her that she looked like an Auswitz survivor and suggested she get a trainer- the rest is history. She worked through that bout of cancer, all the while also working as a Supreme Court Justice; the training regimen Bryant created for her helped her to heal and gain strength, endurance and confidence. Several years later she was struck with pancreatic cancer and she survived this awful diagnosis as well. I have no doubt that her willingness to perform the workout exercises detailed in his book are at least partly responsible for her remarkable ability to heal from cancer as well as to maintain the mental clarity and agility she demonstrates on the Supreme Court.

The book starts out with a nice introduction from RBG herself. Following that, it describes easily performed stretches that work on preparing the body for a workout- the stretches are nicely described using basic home equipment. Next, the exercises are described, first demonstrated on gym equipment, then using basic weights and straps for people who can’t get to a gym or prefer to work at home. As always, timing and repetitions are detailed so that even a beginner can get some idea of how to do the exercises without overdoing them.

Many people would benefit from the workout described in nice detail in the book RBG Workout. It’s a full body exercise regimen that could be done a few times a week in total. If you have any questions,call my office. We are here to help.

Summer humidity affects us all

As summer approaches, humidity rises especially here in the south. For many people, high humidity makes it harder to breathe, to cool off, and to feel energetic. It is easy to get dehydrated when the humidity is high in the summer because body temperature is higher. Also, a person’s anxiety level can rise, and heart attack risks increase with high levels of humidity.

From the perspective of Chinese medicine, high humidity affects the body as dampness. Many illnesses are associated with dampness: fibromyalgia, a feeling of  heaviness and bloating, nodular masses, sore joints, dizziness, and other conditions.

When summer’s high humidity is here, we turn on the AC. We depend on air conditioning to not only cool off the air, but to also reduce the water level in the air. If we don’t have AC, we open windows or turn on fans to move air, reduce stagnation, and improve our bodies’ ability to evaporate sweat to cool us.

Certain herbal remedies and dietary changes can resolve dampness.  Herbs such as mint, fennel seed, coriander, saffron, dill, and small amounts of cumin or cardamom can be added to cooked dishes or tea to promote cooling and reduce the overheating effects of high humidity. Drinking adequate cool water and electrolyte rich beverages can reduce the risk of dehydration as well as cool the body.

Moderate exercise and yoga postures can help to improve movement of the organs, reducing stagnation, and improve elimination.

As humidity levels rise, take care of at-risk folks and yourself. If you feel high humidity levels negatively affect you, be sure to ask your healthcare provider for help.

 

Insurance helps pay for acupuncture care in Chapel Hill.

At Acupractic in Chapel Hill we help a lot of people with acupuncture care through our in-office Acupuncture at Eastowne clinic. Patients receive care for pain, stress, headaches, insomnia, digestive disorders, to name a few. Acupuncture involves the insertion of small sterile needles inserted along body meridians to release stagnation and improve energy flow so that the body can heal itself. Used in conjunction with massage techniques and/or adjustments, acupuncture is a powerful healing tool that helps people of all ages to improve their heal naturally on many levels.

A licensed acupuncturist, Dr. Oskardmay loves seeing people get well using acupuncture and other natural methods. Insurance coverage has improved over the years and many plans, including UHC, BCBS Student Health, Veterans Health Insurance, Cigna, Aetna and others support this type of care, making it more accessible for many people.

Call today to schedule an appointment or to get your questions answered; 24 hour online scheduling is available on our website: acudocnc.com

We look forward to working with you.

"Milk" in various forms compared

We are presented with a variety of milk-like beverage options at the supermarket. Have you ever compared these options? Posted below are side-carton images of various milk products:  rice dream, almond milk, cow milk, coconut milk, flax milk and soy milk. Per 8 ounce serving size for each, what do you notice regarding calories, protein, fat, calcium and other nutrient content? Why do you choose one milk beverage over another?

From the selected cartons above (taken from Whole Foods grocery):

Rice milk has the highest calorie count (120 kcal) mostly coming from 10 grams of sugar per serving; no fiber, virtually no protein (1 g) and low fat (2.5 g).

Almond milk has a low calorie content (60 kcal), is low fat (2.5 g), moderate sugar (7 g) and has virtually no protein (1 g).

Cow milk has the highest calorie content (160 kcal), highest fat (9 g) and highest saturated fat content (5 g), sugar content (12 g), and protein content (8 g).

Soy milk has a moderate 100 kcal content, moderate fat content (4 g), moderate sugar content (6 g), and high protein content (7 g).

Flax milk has the lowest calorie content (50 kcal), coming entirely from unsaturated fat (2.5 g) and sugar (7 g).

Coconut milk has a moderately low calorie content (7o kcal) coming largely from fat (4 grams saturated fat, 1/2 g unsaturated fat), and sugar (7 g). Coconut milk has no protein.

Many vegetarians and vegans choose non-cow milk for their milk beverages. Some people choose a milk based on taste of product or because they have allergies to one or another milk (cow milk and soy milk allergies are common, some people are allergic to almonds).

The environmental impact of milk production impacts some peoples’ choice. A gallon of cow milk utilizes many more gallons of water to make than a gallon of any other milk; many people choose non-cow milk for environmental reasons and/or concerns about animal welfare.

People choose a milk product based on its calorie content or based on that food’s ability to fit nutritional goals. Nonetheless, the `milk’ of a product may bear little resemblance to its parent nutritionally (for example- coconut, almond and flax milks have no fiber to speak of whereas coconuts and almonds and flax are fibrous; almond milk has virtually no protein whereas almonds are high protein snacks;  and rice milk is mostly sugar whereas rice has protein). Many milks are fortified, however, to contain extra vitamins and minerals so nutritional aspects have been enhanced, just not necessarily in ways you might expect.

Choose your milk thoughtfully and look at labels.

Positivity

The Mayo Clinic lists 5 ways to increase your positivity:

  1. Check yourself for negativity often
  2. Be open to humor
  3. Live a healthy lifestyle
  4. Keep the company of positive people
  5. Practice positive self-talk

Emphasize the things that you can do rather than the things you can’t do. I just read about a quadruple amputee who climbed Mount Kilimanjaro- each of us can achieve our goals if we try.

A big belly laugh stimulates endorphins, mobilizes the stomach and releases negative energy. As we get older, many of us move less, our attitudes harden, our abdominal areas become more swampy. Humor allows us to transform these in several ways.
The basics of a healthy lifestyle emphasize proper sleep, diet and attitude with connection to the natural world around you. Take time out every day to reflect on your place in the natural order of life, go outside and open yourself to the natural world.

Positive people support you, laugh with you, listen to you and share. Look around and find those people in your life who offer you these atributes- thank them for their positive presence in your life and be that person to others.

Each of us talks to ourselves. Be kind to yourself.
“Desiderata” (Latin: desired things) by Max Ehrmann 1927

Go placidly amid the noise and haste, and remember what peace there may be in silence.  As far as possible without surrender be on good terms with all persons. Speak your truth quietly and clearly; and listen to others, even the dull and the ignorant; they too have their story.

Avoid loud and aggressive persons, they are vexations to the spirit. If you compare yourself with others, you may become vain and bitter; for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself. Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans.
Keep interested in your own career, however humble; it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time. Exercise caution in your business affairs; for the world is full of trickery. But let this not blind you to what virtue there is; many persons strive for high ideals; and everywhere life is full of heroism.

Be yourself. Especially do not feign affection. Neither be cynical about love; for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment it is as perennial as the grass.

Take kindly the counsel of the years, gracefully surrendering the things of youth. Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune. But do not distress yourself with dark imaginings. Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness. Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself.

You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars; you have a right to be here. And whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.

Therefore be at peace with God, whatever you conceive Him to be, and whatever your labors and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life keep peace with your soul.

With all it sham, drudgery, and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world.
Be cheerful. Strive to be happy.

The oft-repeated words of Max Ehrmann remind us that we have a right to be happy and envision a positive world for ourselves. If you are not as positive as you think you should be, keep a copy of this Desiderata with you. Your work and personal life will benefit from your enhanced positivity.

Consumer reports suggests people reduce the number of medications they take in part by using chiropractic and acupuncture.

According to the September 2017 Consumer Reports cover story, Americans take more pills today than at any other time in history and more than any other country, confounding their health results and costing a lot of money. Many people are taking too many drugs prematurely that aren’t needed according to the article, frequently in response to online and television advertisements that sell sickness. The cover story suggests that patients give their drugs a check up. October 21 2017 is national ‘check your meds day’and is a good opportunity to answer the following questions: how many doctors prescribe your meds, do you also regularly take over the counter drugs or dietary supplements, do you take more than one drug to treat the same health problem, do you need a drug to control the side effects of another drug, have you been taking your medication for more than three months, and do you struggle to pay for your medications?

Apparently 35% of people taking prescription drugs say that a healthcare provider has never reviewed their medications to see if they can stop any. The article suggests that for the following 12 health problems, it is important to try lifestyle changes before drugs: ADHD, back and joint pain, dementia, mild depression, heartburn, insomnia, low testosterone, osteopenia, overactive bladder or, prediabetes, pre-hypertension, and obesity. Work with a non-drug practitioner such as a licensed chiropractor or acupuncturist to help you make lifestyle changes that will achieve results.

Yours in good health,
Acupractic* Natural Healing Center

Fitness

Visiting my local gym Planet Fitness today, I was impressed with all the people exercising in all types of ways- biking, running, lifting weights and doing 30″ workout programs. It’s a very diverse crowd that attends this 24 hour low cost gym and all around are signs reminding people to not judge themselves or others. Televisions in the massage chair and sauna pod areas alternate between modern rock music videos and messages reminding people not be bullies as PF partners with Anti-bullying groups in the area. 
The combination of fitness, massage and love in an accessible place hits all the right notes!

Fox News Recommends Chiropractic and Acupuncture

According to Fox News today, 80% of persons suffering from back pain can achieve lasting relief from chiropractic and acupuncture and massage; yoga and other exercises can be recommended if the person is familiar with doing yoga with similar potential benefit. What this means is that people do not have to reach for the pill bottle or go to their MD to get a prescription nor surgery as a first step to dealing with back pain- one of the major scourges of our society.

Back pain can come on slowly or suddenly. It can be caused by years of poor posture and or by a sudden twisting motion or an accident, or other issue. Regardless of the cause, pain in the back indicates that something has gone awry with the support structure for the body and the spine which protects the all-important nervous system. Back pain is a sign that demands attention to get better.

I’m not a natural doctor who hates medications and surgery- don’t get me wrong. I appreciate all that modern medicine has accomplished to keep our society healthy and we are better off for it in many cases- it has its place. However, I recognize that medications and surgery can have serious side effects that can lead to a downward spiral of health concerns and consequences. The opioid epidemic is one example of this concern. Additionally, I recognize that medications do not fix the cause of the back pain problem and, as such, cannot have a lasting effect. Surgery frequently opens up a new array of problems and, as such, should only be considered as a last resort.

I am a natural doctor who helps people achieve better health with less pain using non-surgical, non-pharmaceutical approaches; and I’m glad that Fox News has highlighted a these options. Find a gentle chiropractor or acupuncturist who helps you understand the cause of the pain you experience. Work with this practitioner to develop a plan to heal.

There are many causes of back pain and it’s nice to know that there are successful treatments available out there.

Call your chiropractor and/or acupuncturist today if you have back pain to see what we can do for you. If you’re in the Durham/Chapel Hill area, call me.  (919) 929-1400

Science

I’m listening to The Peoples’ Pharmacy right now on NPR as they interview Dr Andrew Weil about his new book ‘Mind Over Meds’. I’m struck by his thoughtful, science based evaluation of modern medicine’s prescription of drugs to treat common maladies. He points out that many people are given prescriptions for drugs to treat problems that could be treated effectively using safer, natural methods. If a health condition requires treatment, he suggests that people try  gentle approaches first- herbal tinctures, diet and exercise changes, meditation, etc. before resorting to harsher treatments. Realize that an OTC packaged treatment isn’t necessarily ‘safe’ just because it doesn’t require an MD’s prescription or come with legible warning labels. Also, realize that Direct to Consumer TV and magazine advertisements of medications may have created the idea that you may need a treatment for a ‘condition’ that is not real.

Have faith in your ability to make a science based evaluation of any health condition- do you actually have a problem that needs treatment? Can you make lifestyle changes first? What’s the lowest dose for any drug you could take? You can look for answers to these questions online or ask your healthcare professional. 

Serving the communities of Chapel Hill, Carrboro, Durham, Hillsborough, and the rest of the NC Triangle

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