Dr. Bella Fooksman, D.Ac., L.Ac.  -
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And Back to Blogging....
Seaweed Superfoods
Looking to Alleviate Stress? Try Acupuncture!
Have You Been Diagnosed with a Neurological Disorder? Acupuncture Can Help, Naturally!
Four Fall Foods for Weight Loss, Heart Health and Immunity

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My Blog

And Back to Blogging....

Thanks for your patience everyone, as we made it through a very busy holiday and winter season!
 
I'm looking forward to reaching out to you over the next few months with useful information on health, Acupunture and Chinese Medicine.
 
If you have topics that you'd like to see discussed, let me know!
 
Until, the forthcoming blog...stay well!

Seaweed Superfoods

Think superfoods only come from land?  No way!  Check out the amazing benefits of seaweed and sea vegetable superfoods on my Discussion page!  Enjoy!

Looking to Alleviate Stress? Try Acupuncture!

Alleviate Your Stress with Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine
As a normal part of life, stress enables us to get things done. If left unmanaged, stress can lead to emotional, psychological, and even physical problems. Stress causes a disruption in the flow of vital energy, or Qi, through the body. These energetic imbalances can throw off the immune system or cause symptoms of pain, sleep disturbances, abnormal digestion, headaches, menstrual irregularities, aggravation of already troublesome health conditions and, over time, more serious illnesses can develop.

Stressful situations that last over a long period of time can create an ongoing low-level stress that puts continual pressure on the nervous system, increasing activity, and can cause the overproduction of hormones. The extra stress hormones over an extended period of time may wear out the body's reserves, lead to fatigue, depression, a weakened immune system, and a host of serious physical and psychological ailments.

Some signs of stress overload include:
 
  • anxiety or panic attacks
  • feelings of constant pressure, hassled and hurried
  • irritability and moodiness
  • physical symptoms such as stomach problems, headaches, or even chest pain
  • allergic reactions, such as eczema or asthma
  • problems sleeping
  • overindulgence in food, alcohol, smoking, or drugs
  • sadness or depression
 

Stress is often the cause of illness and the deterioration of health. Finding a release valve for your stress can help you stay healthy. According to Oriental medicine, stress, frustration, and unresolved anger can play an important part in throwing the immune system off and allowing pathogens to affect the body. Through acupuncture, these energy blockages can be addressed. Acupuncture points can help energy flow smoothly, and alleviate not only the symptoms of stress and anxiety, but the stress and anxiety itself.

Numerous studies have demonstrated the substantial benefits of acupuncture in the treatment of stress. Acupuncture improves circulation of blood throughout the body, which oxygenates the tissues and cycles out cortisol and other waste chemicals. The calming nature of acupuncture also decreases heart rate, lowers blood pressure and relaxes the muscles.

In addition to acupuncture, Oriental medicine offers a wide range of tools and techniques that can be integrated into your wellness plan to keep stress in check. These tools include Tui Na, Qi Gong exercises, dietary therapy, meditations and acupressure that you can administer at home.

While it isn't always possible to remove the external forces causing stress, the ability to effectively deal with stress is a choice. Take time for yourself to cultivate the energy you need to handle your stress more skillfully and effectively.
source:  Acufinder.com

Have You Been Diagnosed with a Neurological Disorder? Acupuncture Can Help, Naturally!

Here is a great summary article about the benefit of Acupuncture for Neurological Disorders:
 
Treatment of Neurological Disorders with Acupuncture
A neurological disorder refers to a problem with the nervous system, which is a complex, sophisticated system that regulates and coordinates the body’s activities. Nerve pain can arise from trauma, inflammation, stroke, disease, infection, nerve degeneration, exposure to toxic chemicals, and nutrient deficiencies.

Nerve pain is usually a sharp shooting pain or a constant burning sensation. Typically occurring in the same location with each episode, it can often be traced along the nerve pathway. Sometimes weakness or impaired function in the affected area occurs and the skin may be either overly sensitive or numb.

Some common neurological disorders acupuncture treats include:

Peripheral Neuropathy - damage to the peripheral nervous system, which transmits information from the brain and spinal cord to every other part of the body. Neuropathy caused by diabetes often affects the feet.

Trigeminal Neuralgia - facial pain, sometimes called Tic Douloureux, affects the trigeminal nerve which is responsible for impulses of touch, pain, pressure and temperature sent to the brain from the face, jaw, and gums.

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome - also known as median nerve entrapment, it occurs when swelling or irritation of the nerve or tendons in the carpal tunnel results in pressure on the median nerve.

Headaches - Headaches that can be treated with acupuncture include migraines, tension headaches, headaches occurring around the menstrual cycle, sinus headaches and stress-related headaches.

Acupuncture and Oriental medicine have been found effective as a conjunctive therapy for neurological disorders and in treating pain and inflammation. 
 
Source:  Acufinder.com

Four Fall Foods for Weight Loss, Heart Health and Immunity

Fall is rich with seasonal foods that can help you stay healthy, but do you know what foods like apples, carrots and parsnips can do for you?  
 
Read to find out! http://bit.ly/v03RIA

Want to change your mind? Meditation reshapes your brain, literally!

Modern science is finally discovering what the ancients knew long ago.  Meditation can actually result in a physical change in the brain - improving judgement and decision making - freeing the mind to respond in the moment rather than reacting from past behavioral patterns.  This is a must read!  Click and be amazed: Your Brain on Meditation - Acupuncture Today - November 2011

From Infertility, to Hypertension, to Supressed Immunity - the common denominator can often be stress

 
So many patients come to me seeking a way to manage stress with acupncture.  I came across this excellent articile about stress, and it's many implications at the Mayo Clinic website.  From poor digestion, suppressed immunity, and infertility, stress is often a contributing factor...
 
 
Stress: Constant stress puts your health at riskYour body's stress reaction was meant to protect you. But when it's constantly on alert, your health can pay the price. Take steps to control your stress. By Mayo Clinic staff
 
Your body is hard-wired to react to stress in ways meant to protect you against threats from predators and other aggressors. Such threats are rare today, but that doesn't mean that life is free of stress.  On the contrary, you undoubtedly face multiple demands each day, such as shouldering a huge workload, making ends meet, taking care of your family, or just making it through the morning rush hour. Your body treats these so-called minor hassles as threats. As a result you may feel as if you're constantly under assault. But you can fight back. You don't have to let stress control your life.
 
Understanding the natural stress response
 
If your mind and body are constantly on edge because of excessive stress in your life, you may face serious health problems. That's because your body's "fight-or-flight reaction" — its natural alarm system — is constantly on.
When you encounter perceived threats — a large dog barks at you during your morning walk, for instance — your hypothalamus, a tiny region at the base of your brain, sets off an alarm system in your body. Through a combination of nerve and hormonal signals, this system prompts your adrenal glands, located atop your kidneys, to release a surge of hormones, including adrenaline and cortisol.
 
Adrenaline increases your heart rate, elevates your blood pressure and boosts energy supplies. Cortisol, the primary stress hormone, increases sugars (glucose) in the bloodstream, enhances your brain's use of glucose and increases the availability of substances that repair tissues.
 
Cortisol also curbs functions that would be nonessential or detrimental in a fight-or-flight situation. It alters immune system responses and suppresses the digestive system, the reproductive system and growth processes. This complex natural alarm system also communicates with regions of your brain that control mood, motivation and fear.
 
When the natural stress response goes haywire
 
The body's stress-response system is usually self-regulating. It decreases hormone levels and enables your body to return to normal once a perceived threat has passed. As adrenaline and cortisol levels drop, your heart rate and blood pressure return to baseline levels, and other systems resume their regular activities.
 
But when the stressors of your life are always present, leaving you constantly feeling stressed, tense, nervous or on edge, that fight-or-flight reaction stays turned on. The less control you have over potentially stress-inducing events and the more uncertainty they create, the more likely you are to feel stressed. Even the typical day-to-day demands of living can contribute to your body's stress response.
 
The long-term activation of the stress-response system — and the subsequent overexposure to cortisol and other stress hormones — can disrupt almost all your body's processes. This puts you at increased risk of numerous health problems, including:
 
  • Heart disease
  • Sleep problems
  • Digestive problems
  • Depression
  • Obesity
  • Memory impairment
  • Worsening of skin conditions, such as eczema
 
That's why it's so important to learn healthy ways to cope with the stressors in your life.
 
Why you react to life stressors the way you do
 
Your reaction to a potentially stressful event is different from anyone else's. How you react to stressors in your life includes such factors as:
 
  • Genetics. The genes that control the stress response keep most people on a fairly even keel, only occasionally priming the body for fight or flight. Overactive or underactive stress responses may stem from slight differences in these genes.
  • Life experiences. Strong stress reactions sometimes can be traced to early environmental factors. People who were exposed to extremely stressful events as children, such as neglect or abuse, tend to be particularly vulnerable to stress as adults.
 
You may have some friends who seem laid-back about almost everything and others who react strongly at the slightest stress. Most reactions to life stressors fall somewhere between those extremes. Learning to react to life stressors in a healthy way Stressful events are a fact of life. And you may not be able to change your current situation. But you can take steps to manage the impact these events have on you. You can learn to identify what stresses you out, how to take control of some stress-inducing circumstances, and how to take care of yourself physically and emotionally in the face of stressful situations.
 
Stress management strategies include:
 
  • Eating a healthy diet and getting regular exercise and plenty of sleep
  • Practicing relaxation techniques
  • Fostering healthy friendships
  • Having a sense of humor
  • Seeking professional counseling when needed
 
The payoff of managing stress is peace of mind and — perhaps — a longer, healthier life.

Fight Acne with These Super Foods

Acupuncture views nutrition in a complex light, through the application of Oriental medicine wisdom to dietary habits. In short, certain foods are considered too yang, or hot to eat in excess during the warmer months, while others are prized for their yin ability to cool the body. Overall, the goal is balance between the internal yin and yang of the body.A healthy, nutritional diet, getting good quality sleep and moderate exercise can keep your skin and physical form at it's best. Be sure to integrate these items into your diet to help keep you looking your best!Carrots and Sweet Potatoes - Healthy skin is directly dependent on the amount of vitamin A in our diet. Vitamin A acts as an antioxidant to neutralize harmful elements in our skin, helps to prevent wrinkles, resist infection and maintain the skin's elasticity. One of the best places to get Vitamin A is vegetables that are deep orange in color.
 
Blackberries, Blueberries, Strawberries, and Plums - In a study recently published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, these four fruits weighed in with the highest "total antioxidant capacity" of any food. Antioxidants and other phytochemicals in these fruits can protect cells from damage and disintegration, thus guarding against premature aging.
 
Salmon, Walnuts, Olive Oil, and Flax Seed - Essential fatty acids (EFAs) are responsible for skin repair, moisture content, and overall flexibility, but because the body cannot produce its own EFAs, they must be obtained through the diet. Fish, walnuts, and flax seed oil are among the best sources for omega 3 fatty acid. Eating good-quality olive oil helps keep skin lubricated and keeps it looking and feeling healthier overall. Which olive oil is the best for your skin? Those labeled "cold pressed", "expeller processed", or "extra virgin" are the least processed forms. As a result, they contain the highest levels of antioxidative substances.
 
Whole Wheat Bread, Brown Rice, Turkey, Tuna and Brazil Nuts - Selenium is an antioxidant mineral responsible for tissue elasticity and healthy skin. It may play an important role in preventing skin cancer, as some recent studies are showing that skin damaged by the sun may suffer fewer consequences if selenium levels are high.
 
Green Tea – Green tea's ability to slow down the development of some signs of aging is attributed to its high levels of polyphenols, which have been well-documented for their antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Green tea may help prevent or reduce the risk of skin cancer according to a study published recently in the Archives of Dermatology, which shows that whether taken orally or applied to the skin, green tea can reduce the risk of damage from ultraviolet light and thus reduce the risk of skin cancer.
 
Water - Hydration plays a key role in keeping skin cells healthy. It is essential to maintaining your skin's elasticity and suppleness. Keeping cells hydrated helps cells move nutrients in and toxins out, which helps keep skin clean and clear.
 
Source:  Acufinder.com

Digestion Secrets

Check out the new monthly discussion:  Digestion Secrets for Nutrient Absorption and Energy - and start feeling better!

Treating Autoimmune Disorders with Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine

Did you know that over twenty percent of the American population struggles with auto-immune disorders?  Check out this great article to find out how Acupuncture can help treat this group of disorders safely, naturally and effectively!