Acupuncture and Related Therapies
TAI CHI & QI GONG
Qi Gong exercises can be done lying down, sitting, standing, or moving around. Tai Chi involves a series of stepping or rocking movements. Both focus on learning correct postures, regulating breath, and calming the mind. Practicing these methods can lead to increased vitality, improved resistance to disease, and a calmer disposition. For some, this can be a form of meditation. There are styles that focus on the meridians, as well as arthritis, breast health, and weight loss.
There are many acupuncture points that you can hold or massage for a few minutes. They are effective for both physical and emotional problems. Abdominal massage is effective for many conditions: insomnia, weight loss, and improving intestinal movement.
CHINESE DIETARY GUIDELINES
* Eat cooked foods within 24 hours. Refrigerating and reheating decreases the essence of food.
* The temperature of the food should match the body temperature for easiest digestion ("100*F soup"). Avoid ice cold drinks with meals. It will take about 30 minutes for the stomach contents to warm up. Excess liquids dilute stomach acid that is needed for digestion. (Excess liquids throughout the day puts a strain on the kidneys and ends up in the tissues.) Chew food well. Saliva assists the digestive process and regulates the pH of the stomach.
* After eating, massage the abdomen and take a leisurely walk.
* Don't eat when you're upset, extremely tired, or before or after sex.
* When ill or weak, eat foods that are easy to digest. Less energy is needed for digestion and more energy is available for healing. (eg. soupy white rice rather than brown rice)
* Breakfast should be the largest meal of the day. Supper should be the smallest meal. "At breakfast, eat like an emperor; at lunch, eat like a prince; at supper, eat like a pauper."
* Each day you should have foods from the five flavors: sweet, sour, spicy, salty, and bitter. Meals should be balanced with foods that include both warming and cooling characteristics, and that are appropriate for the season.