Children’s physiology is very different to adults because they are still growing and developing. In Chinese medicine, we consider the digestive system of a child as a very important part for overall wellbeing. Why is that so? Because the post-natal qi (energy force) is formed from air, food and water.
Lets look at allergies first: According to Chinese medicine, we can consider allergies being caused through a deficiency of the defensive energy, a thin layer that surrounds the body and protects it. Through the failing of the protective energy, foreign particles upset the system and develop various symptoms. In Western terms, it’s called immunity. Interestingly the spleen organ is part of the immune system in the western medical context as well.
In Chinese medicine, the spleen is the principal organ system of digestion. In this role it assists the body in energy production by transforming food and water. With the help of air (oxygen) that is inhaled by the lungs, it refines the energy into a yin energy (blood) and a yang energy that has a gaseous structure. This way, the body receives protection power from those two forms of energy.
These explanations are not always easy to comprehend. But by looking on how allergies arise, it makes a lot of sense because by treating the spleen, particularly in children, we can address the allergies, the digestion and the state of energy as well.
Treating the spleen is achieved through assessing the diet, working with the spleen meridian and also involving it’s partner organ, the stomach. With herbal formulas in liquid extract form, particularly popular with children, we correct deficiencies and improve the defensive force.
Because children are mostly unburdened by concepts of life and expectations of society and because their energy system is uncontaminated by toxins such as alcohol and drugs, they respond tremendously well to treatment.
If you feel that your child is not thriving, please contact Safflower Chinese Medicine clinic for an assessment
Welcome to Summer! The sun’s out, the days are longer, we can finally get Vitamin D from the sun again! However, whilst it may feel as though we should be relaxing, it’s likely we’re doing everything BUT sitting with our feet up in the garden, or lazing on the beach.
Even us practitioners approach this time of year with bated breath. Year in and year out, we watch ourselves storm out of the depths of winter at a sprint – racing to the end of the year, packing it full of social events, extra work, extra jobs around the house; eating, drinking, indulging. We take on too much, and then collapse into a stupor during those 1-2 weeks off over Christmas/New Year – if we’re the lucky ones to have this time of year off. The end-result is fatigue, overindulgence, and a pre-disposition towards choices that aren’t particularly healthy. Unfortunately, we will pay for it later, usually in winter.
So, this year, the practitioners at Safflower are going to challenge everyone to think about summer differently. Try to forget that Christmas and all associated indulgence is upon us. Ignore the calendar, and the subconscious frenzy we are prone to when pondering the concept of “December 31!”. We would like you to relax, and enjoy yourself.
Summer is three months long. It’s a time of enjoying the fruits (and vegetables) the abundant sun has so kindly given us. It’s a time for reconnecting with others, enjoying nature and the beautiful environment around us. It’s a time of siestas in the heat of the afternoon, and quiet moments at sunrise in the morning.
In Chinese Medicine, summer is related to joy and love, as we recharge in the sun and share the warmth we have with others. We can also use this warmth to bring some light into the lives of those who may be experiencing sadness or loneliness. Giving love and warmth, as the sun gives us, will fill us in a way the sparkling shiraz and mince pies probably won’t.
Happy Summer everyone, and much love and light to you all.
Spring has finally sprung, and for most of us, warm spring weather signals a welcome change to the winter just gone. However, if you are one of the 18% of Australians who suffer from Seasonal Allergic Rhinitis (Hay fever), the increased pollens in the air this time of year might leave you feeling less than enthusiastic.
Allergic rhinitis is due to an overreaction of the immune system to an allergen (often pollen). The allergen binds to immune cells that release irritating compounds, such as histamine. This can result in sneezing, watery eyes, itchy nose, chills, sweating, asthma, and malaise. Hay fever can be incredibly debilitating. Apart from living on antihistamines, many sufferers aren’t aware they can take other steps to improve their symptoms.
- Look after your liver: Histamine is the main irritant in the allergic response, and is broken down in the liver. If your liver is overworked, you can have an overabundance of histamine in your system. Thus, when an allergen is present, the reaction is far worse.
- Avoid histamine rich foods: Histamine is present in higher concentrations in aged foods. Alcohol, aged cheese, preserves, processed meats, and fermented foods all have high concentrations of histamine. Eating fresh, unprocessed foods will help reduce your histamine load and severity of your symptoms.
- Reduce stress: healthy adrenal function can have an anti-inflammatory effect. Prolonged stress and subsequent burnout can stop the adrenal glands from properly protecting our bodies from stress, including allergic reactions.
- Heal the gut: an overabundance of certain strains of gut bacteria can increase the amount of histamine in your blood.
- Have a series of Acupuncture treatments and take Chinese herbs. Acupuncture for Allergic Rhinitis is an excellent, evidence-based treatment strategy to reduce the symptoms of hay fever. Chinese herbs help in restoring balance to the system to prevent future attacks. Our treatments can help your liver function, your adrenal health and assist your gut, whilst making you feel calm, relaxed and sneeze free.
Enjoy Spring again!
If you want to speak to one of our registered practitioners, please call 03 5956 7011 or book online!