Chinese Medicine + Functional Medicine for Gut Restoration
Why has Chinese Medicine stick around so long?
One of the many reasons is due to the sophistication of its herbal medicine. It is truly magical!
Now- is Chinese Medicine enough in these intense times?
Most likely not. But the combination of cutting-edge science that explores the microbiome and all of its intricacies (Functional Medicine) combined with Chinese Medicine is a deeply powerful combo. It can make the gut alive again! The goal is gut bliss.
With epidemics of new, modern day diseases, overuse of antibiotics is at an all time high.
The destruction of our microbiomes from drugs bring devastating symptoms. Our severely deranged food supply combined with our unprecedented stress levels bring us to a place we have never been before in healthcare. Super-bugs, that are resistant to antibiotics are growing at an alarming rate, increasing fatalities every year.
This is where Chinese Medicine steps in.
The Power of Chinese Medicine
There are over 450 herbs included in a Chinese pharmacy!
Dried flowers, plants, minerals, shells, bones, roots, stems, leaves and berries are all incredibly medicinal. From deep browns of earth and ash to the golden musk of forest and resin, it is almost impossible to inhale these treasures and not feel their powers…increasing qi, making the gut alive again. Bringing gut bliss!
I swear these things have a life of their own.
Oriental Medicine is known for seeing each person as unique, with energetic patterns specific to their body and constitution. It recognizes that the elements in nature run parallel to the human body.
Chinese Medical theory is based on the elements: Wood, Fire, Earth, Metal, and Water.
Chinese practitioners develop a deep understanding of the energetics behind these elements and how they interact and affect each other. These interactions create perpetual cycles (energetically) in the human body; a Chinese Doctor’s greatest skill is one of pattern recognition.
Every patient is given a different point prescription for needles when they receive acupuncture. Sometimes in Chinese Medicine we needto cool a person’s system down and support the Yin energy, sometimes we need to warm it up and stimulate the Yang energy.
With needles we can also get the blood moving when it has become stagnant, descend the energy back down if it’s going upward, or get the clear Yang energy to rise back to the head if need be. Needle technique can actually tonify energy or disperse it- there is much we can do with needles.
In scientific terms, we are simply working with one’s nervous and lymphatic systems. The ancients knew the map of the blood vessels and realized that needles could profoundly tap into a patient’s physiology.
In Traditional Chinese Medicine, the life force contained in all living things is called "Qi." By increasing and tonifying one's qi, health is restored. Total gut health can be achieved only once qi has increased.
Herbs function in a similar manner as described above; herbs can cool things down, warm things up etc.
With digestive issues (inflammation), we almost always need to clear the heat in the intestines and often drain the damp (mucous) as well.
Chinese herbalism is so incredible because not only do we know the energetics (hot, cold, moist, drying, cloying, moving, blood building etc) of every herb, we know exactly what Meridians and organs the herbs will go directly to.
This means we can get very, very specific with treatment.
I believe that bringing more awareness of Chinese Medicine to everyone to be super important! Gut bliss is the goal!
Chinese Herbs, in my opinion, are hidden gems that (with an elementary understanding of) could profoundly benefit many- especially those suffering with digestive issues.
Studies have shown that Chinese herbs can be extremely effective in assisting Crohn’s and Colitis sufferers stay in remission without steroids or other toxic medications.
People suffering under the umbrella term of Irritable Bowel Syndrome can experience a drastic improvement in quality of life with the help of Chinese herbs.
Particularly when dealing with pain such as cramping sensations that bring gut wrenching symptoms such as extremely uncomfortable gas and bloating ……Kang Ning Wan, Curing Pills, is such a formula. It clears the damp-heat (inflammation = pain/gas/bloating) and brings blood flow back to the inflamed areas.
Is your gut alive and well? If not, try Curing Pills.
Chinese + Functional Medicine
As I am simultaneously a certified Functional Medicine practitioner, I find myself bouncing back and forth between the two systems. Although one is Eastern and one is Western, I have discovered they are really expressing the same thing, just in a different language.
In Chinese terms, digestive issues are largely due to heat and damp; often stagnation resulting from the two. In Western terms this boils down to one thing- inflammation. Total gut health requires eliminating all inflammation.
This inflammation is the result of dysbiosis (imbalance of the flora in the microbiome.
Again and again, I find that a cooling formula that goes directly to the intestines works very well. And, no surprise here, but most of the Chinese herbs that are in these formulas that are described as “cooling” are indeed antibacterial and antiviral.
IBS and IBD are either due to or the cause of pathogenic microbes overhauling the system. These pathogens- bacterial, viral, fungal or parasitic) are causing inflammation. It is with great consistency I find the same herbal formulas doing wonders for gut problems.
While natural antibiotics and probiotics can do incredible things for one’s digestive system, I have observed an interesting phenomenon.
Often when I have prescribed probiotics and western supplements alone in the absence of Chinese herbs, I have found the condition to return more often.
The herbs seem to contribute to some deeper level, or to the most fundamental level, of healing.
It appears that by changing the energetics of the terrain with powerful Chinese herbal formulas, the more all other aspects of treatment take hold, and total gut health is restored. Total gut bliss becomes possible.
At a very Root Level, in Chinese diagnostic terms, the Spleen and Stomach are the primary target for any and all digestive conditions.
Nourishing these organs (with Chinese herbs and acupuncture) means tonification of all other organs, and creates the foundation for treatment. Total gut health cannot be restored unless the Spleen and the Stomach are functioning optimally.
By working on inflammation at an energetic level (herbs) as well as a physical level (natural antibiotics, probiotics and diet) we really find the highest potential in treatment.
Again- in Traditional Chinese Medicine, the life force contained in all living things is called "Qi." Increase Qi, increase vitality and energy and find your way back to total gut health.
Hence why my practice has become a complete blend of these two systems; the integration of two undeniably effective forms of treatment.
By treating the Root Cause, medications become unnecessary or only used in dire situations. Chinese Herbs are a priceless adjunct to whatever regime one is already following. Most certainly they can be used in conjunction with pharmaceuticals. They have so much to offer- with zero side effects and low cost.
I wish for you gut bliss.
Best to you on your herbal adventures!