It’s National Acupuncture Day!

Today is National Acupuncture Day as well as my birthday. It makes me smile to think that my birthday is the same day as National Acupuncture Day, as if somehow it was my destiny to become a practitioner of Chinese Medicine. So exactly how did a girl from Chattanooga, Tennessee end up in New York City working as an acupuncturist/herbalist in an completely Chinese office?

I joke and say that I am the “token” in the office that I have shared for the last eight years with the famous Dr. Jin, her husband Dr. Kin (both acupuncturist from Shanghai), and their Chinese only staff. They treat me like family and tell me that I am part Chinese because I work long hours like they do. But no one works as hard and as long as my Chinese colleagues–inspirations to us all.

Most people are unaware of Acupuncture Day and the benefits of acupuncture, but we acupuncturist are asked to spread the word.

I want to take this opportunity to share my story about how I came to rely on Chinese Medicine as my primary health care system, and why I chose this career path in my second spring of life.

In the early 80’s I was living and working as a professional modern and jazz dancer in NYC. Dancers work long and hard physically, and my body was constantly plagued with aches, pains, strains and tears. When I needed medical attention, the western doctors would tell me to stop dancing for six to eight weeks! For a dancer, that was like telling me to stop breathing for that amount of time. Clearly that was not an option, as “the show must go on” and the rent needed to […]

By |October 24th, 2012|Acupuncture|Comments Off on It’s National Acupuncture Day!

To Juice or To Blend: That is the Question

To juice or to blend: that is the question. My patients often ask me which is better, and the answer is simple: both are beneficial for different reasons.

Read on to find out which works best for you.

Why Juice?

Juicing extracts water and all the nutrients from the produce while discarding the fiber. This concentration of nutrients is quickly absorbed into the body without the burden of having to digest the fiber. This is great when you want to increase your fruits and vegetable servings without all the bulk.

The quantity of plant produce that one can consume in an eight ounce glass can be the equivalent of eating one bunch of kale, ten celery stalks, ten carrots, or three cucumbers. There is no way we would eat that much produce in one day.

Juicing is the way to go when wanting to rev up your vegetable and fruit intake to add concentrated nutrients including valuable antioxidants, minerals and vitamins. I like to add a green juice once a day to provide my body with all the vibrant nutrition that is power packed in a green juice. I like to use mostly greens and keep my juice on the low glycemic index to avoid sugar spikes–try it!

How to Juice

Because of the high concentration of produce, it is best to only juice organic produce. Try to use local produce as well, when possible. I love picking beautiful, organic, local greens from my farmers market and combining them in interesting ways. What tastes good is good here!

There are many types of juicers on the market. Finding the perfect juicer for you can be overwhelming. Purists insist that a cold press juicer is superior to a rotary type juicer as more nutritional […]

By |October 18th, 2012|Healthy Meals|Comments Off on To Juice or To Blend: That is the Question

Be a Good Citizen… and Eat Your Fruits and Vegetables!

A shocking statement was made at a recent nutritional conference, and I have to agree with the sentiment:

“The Taliban couldn’t have done a better job at attacking and undermining the health of the American people if they had designed the typical American diet themselves!”

We are a country of the over-fed and undernourished. We don’t have to look too far to see the disastrous effects of fast food, processed food, chemicals, preservatives, and additives on the health of our nation. We as a people are plagued with the diseases of unhealthy lifestyle habits.

Heart disease, diabetes, cancer, depression, stress and anxiety are on the rise and now affecting our children at younger and younger ages. “No child left behind” is not working. Children are not only being left behind in school with foggy brains from bad nutrition, but also on the playground, where they are unable to skip, jump, cartwheel and feel the joy of moving due to dragging around their undernourished and over-burdened bodies.

The numbers and statics support this. But I feel this problem needs to be addressed on a personal level and not just as a statistic that happens to other people.

Each one of us is affected by unhealthy lifestyle habits. Our parents, family members, friends, spouses, children, colleagues, and neighbors are all at risk of having or developing diseases of unhealthy life choices, as are we ourselves. It is time that we look at and work on this problem as a community. We can become a support system to help move each other into making better food choices, becoming more active, mentally focused, relaxed, and satisfied with life.

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One of the first steps towards a healthier life is to start having home cooked […]

By |October 10th, 2012|Lifestyle|Comments Off on Be a Good Citizen… and Eat Your Fruits and Vegetables!

Wheat and Gluten-Free Consumers Beware!

Like most of us, when shopping in health foods stores, I have a belief that the products there are of a higher nutritional value. It is easy to place foods in my cart without feeling the need to scrutinize labels and worry about additives or chemicals. But is this really safe to do?

As an acupuncturist and a nutritional advisor, I am often helping patients find higher quality foods that fit their particular needs and lifestyle. I like to keep abreast of the latest trends in healthy eating so I can help my patients and my family eat the best foods available on the market.

The latest craze is a gluten and wheat free diet. The word is out, and there is an endless selection of gluten and wheat free products on the market these days. With the new variety available, many of my patients have switched to gluten and wheat free breads for a more health-conscious approach to eating grains.

Wheat products that are produced in the United States today are not as healthy for our bodies; these products are super-charged with gluten and a type of wheat that sky-rockets blood sugar even higher than white table sugar does!

I am a supporter of this trend, but have noticed that all products on the market are not produced equally. During my latest trip to the health food store, I began to really read the ingredients in some of the most popular products on the market. While it is a great idea to avoid wheat products, it also is necessary to truly look at the ‘healthy’ products replacing them.

Take Udi’s, for example. Marketed as an ancient grain bread, upon closer inspection of their ingredients, I’d have to say they […]

By |October 3rd, 2012|Healthy Meals|Comments Off on Wheat and Gluten-Free Consumers Beware!