Archive: Chinese medicine

Boost Immunity with Change of Season Soup

Many of my patients are suffering from the “Daycare Curse” lately. At school or daycare, their kids are passing around germs, left, right and centre. Little Sarah then comes home, sneezes or coughs in your face and wipes her snotty hands on you. Before you know it, everyone in the household is infected, including you, who is still expected to care for all the other sick and whiny family members.

You and your family don’t have to suffer through repeated colds, flus and sore throats. Naturopathic Medicine provides treatment to boost immunity, prevent illness, speed recovery and reduce your symptoms once you do get sick.

This Change of Season Soup is a great way to help keep the adults and teenagers in the family healthy for the coming winter. Drink 1–2 cups every day for 5–14 days. It can be enjoyed as a tea (you may add honey and/or cinnamon sticks) or as a soup with vegetables, chicken and chicken broth.


  1. Codonopsis pilosula root (Dang Shen)
  2. Astragalus root (Huang Qi)
  3. Dioscorea villosa (Wild Yam)
  4. Chinese Lycii berries (Lyceum/wolf berries/goji berries)

Use equal parts of each herb (2–3 oz each). You can combine in one batch, or purchase individual prepared packs from your local specialty health food store or trusted Chinese herb market.


Fill a large pot with water. Add the herbs and place the lid on. Bring to a boil and simmer for 1–4 hours, adding more water if needed.

Allow to cool, strain and enjoy 1–2 cups per day for 5–14 days.

Alternately, add herbs to chicken broth and simmer for 1 hour. You can enjoy it as is or make a soup out of this broth.

Additional information:

Codonopsis pilosula root (Dang Shen)

  • Enhances energy (Qi), builds blood, nourishes body fluid, and tonifies the spleen and lungs

Astragalus root (Huang Qi)

  • Boosts immunity, strengthens your defenses, enhances energy (Qi), tonifies the blood and lungs, nourishes the spleen and stimulates the immune system

Dioscorea villosa (Wild Yam)

  • Supports the health of the lungs and kidneys

Chinese Lycii berries (Lyceum)

  • Contains vitamin C, supports lungs and kidneys

If you or any of your family members need a little extra immune TLC, feel free to contact me to book in for my Immune Boosting Program.

Have a healthy and happy winter!

Disclaimer: The information provided in this article is not meant to replace treatment with a licensed healthcare practitioner. It is for informational purposes only. Consult with a Naturopathic Doctor or other licensed healthcare professional to determine which treatments are safe for you.

Acupuncture: More Than Just a Skin Prick!

What is Acupuncture?

Acupuncture is an ancient form of Chinese medicine that treats energetic imbalances in the body. It has been practised for over two thousand years, and is a safe, effective to way to treat a variety of acute and chronic ailments.

Qi (Chi) is the vital energy of the body. This energy travels just below the skin through channels called meridians. The meridians connect all of the body’s organs and systems. Problems arise when this vital energy becomes blocked or weakened. When this occurs, imbalances in the body’s various systems become evident. Problems can arise in the nervous system, circulatory system, musculoskeletal system, digestive system, reproductive system, lymphatic system and/or genitourinary system. Stimulation of associated acupuncture points on the body helps to restore the smooth flow of Qi and bring harmony to the affected area.

How Does it Work?

Qi normally flows smoothly through over twelve meridians or channels in the body. If a blockage occurs and the Qi is not able to course through these channels, then the entire system can be affected, resulting in pain or symptoms in the body. Acupuncture removes the blockage to restore the flow of Qi throughout the body. It brings the body back into balance and removes the symptoms.

Acupuncture can interfere with pain signals in the body. It increases blood flow to the area being stimulated, enhancing nutrient and oxygen delivery, while aiding in the removal of lactic acid and toxic substances from the area. Acupuncture stimulates the natural healing ability of the body, reduces pain and inflammation, and imparts a general sense of calmness and wellbeing in the person being treated.

Does it Hurt?

No. The needles that are used are extremely thin and are placed in anatomical positions where major blood vessels and nerves are absent. When the needles are placed correctly, you may experience a mild to moderate dull or tingling feeling.

How Many Treatments Will I Need?

The number of sessions varies with each individual and condition. In general, chronic problems will need to be treated longer than acute ones. After the first treatment, some people may notice an immediate temporary improvement, but for long-term effects, at least 4–6 weekly treatments are needed, followed by bi-weekly and then monthly treatments. Eventually, you may only need a couple of treatments a year to maintain the results.

What Can Acupuncture Be Used For?

Acupuncture can be used to treat a wide array of health concerns, including:

  • Acute and chronic pain
  • Headaches and migraines
  • Shoulder and neck pain
  • Arthritic pain
  • Injuries, including strains, sprains, golfer’s elbow, tennis elbow, tendonitis, and hip, knee and ankle pain
  • Carpal tunnel syndrome
  • Back pain
  • Stress
  • Digestive complaints
  • Fertility issues
  • Skin disorders
  • Neurological symptoms
  • Menstrual cramps
  • Nausea during pregnancy
  • Energetic imbalances
  • Lack of general wellbeing

Try These Acupressure Points at Home to Reduce Anxiety, Headaches, Nausea and Dizziness

Pericardium 6 (PC 6)

Function: Reduces nausea, motion sickness, sea-sickness, vomiting, dizziness and anxiety

Location: Approximately 2 inches above the wrist crease between the tendons of the anterior forearm

Large Intestine 4 (LI 4)

Function: Reduces chronic pain, frontal and sinus headaches, and improves immunity

Location: On the back of the hand, in the middle of the soft flesh between your thumb and index finger


Function: Reduces anxiety, stress and insomnia, calms the mind, and reduces sinusitis and frontal headaches

Location: Halfway between the inner edges of the eyebrows

Sit back, breathe deeply and relax while you press on these points…or call to book an individualized acupuncture treatment.

Disclaimer: The information provided in this article is not meant to replace treatment with a licensed healthcare practitioner. It is for informational purposes only. Consult with a Naturopathic Doctor or other licensed healthcare professional to determine which treatments are safe for you.