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TCM / Acupuncture: What is Acupuncture?acupuncturist chicago
Originating in China over 2,000 years ago, acupuncture refers to the stimulation of anatomical points on the body by a variety of techniques. Acupuncture is one of the key components of the system of traditional Chinese medicine (TCM), which also includes herbal supplements, tui na (a form of bodywork) and diet therapy.

Any symptom is a sign of an imbalance. Disease is due to an internal imbalance in the flow of qi (pronounced “chee” meaning vital energy) along pathways known as meridians. Health is achieved by maintaining the body in a “balanced state.”
Essentially, your practitioner uses acupuncture to address imbalances externally and Chinese herbal medicine to restore balance internally.

What to Expect
When you come to Healing Ground in Northbrook, Illinois, your practitioner will begin by looking for a relationship between symptoms before determining the optimum pathway for health.

Diagnosis starts with a detailed pulse and tongue analysis, medical history and assessments of your lifestyle and health. From this diagnosis, your practitioner develops an individualized treatment strategy that may incorporate one or many of the TCM methods to return your body to its natural, healthy state. 

Acupuncture is the insertion of very thin needles into specific points along the meridians of the body. These hair-like, stainless steel needles are sterile and disposable. It is common to feel a sense of heaviness when a needle is inserted and little to no discomfort. Many patients fall asleep or deeply relax during treatments.

Herbal Medicine 
Chinese herbal medicine is an ancient, highly elaborate system of natural healing that has been used by billions of people for all kinds of health conditions. Chinese herbal medicine is a wonderful complement to acupuncture treatment, as it works on different substrates in the body and maintains continuity in therapeutic intervention. Acupuncture works on the level of energy by harmonizing the flow of Qi through the main energetic pathways of the body. Quantum physics has verified that our entire material world is comprised of energy, as is the human body. Acupuncture is so unique because it is one of the few therapies that can manipulate the flow of energy in the body and mind to produce a therapeutic effect. In acupuncture theory, until chronic health conditions are addressed on the energetic level, the root cause or problem will often be neglected.
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Chinese herbs work more on the level of blood and manifest physiology. The herbs contain macro and micronutrients that can have specific therapeutic effects on certain organs of the body, such as the liver or kidneys. By working on both the immaterial and material levels, the treatment of acupuncture with herbs is much more effective and lasting.

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I encourage all of my patients to choose an organic whole foods diet that has minimal amounts of sugars, white flour products, synthetic additives, or various ingredients that are difficult to pronounce. This is universally beneficial to all people.
After that, nutritional guidelines need to be specific to you as an individual. There is no 'one size fits all' approach to the best way to eat because each of us has different constitutions. Some people should be eating a raw food diet based on their constitution (yin deficient--dry and over heated), while others need to eat mostly cooked foods (yang deficient--run cold and depleted).

I generally don't believe in diets because they flat out don't work. The goal is to find a balanced and authentic way to eat for the long-term. If it feels unnatural, forced, or excessively uncomfortable there is almost no chance of the diet becoming a viable long-term solution. 

In this day and age, our relationship with food has so much to do with how well we are managing stress, expressing our emotions, and maintaining awareness of our core beliefs. We easily turn to food for immediate gratification and comfort, which so often points to a deeper imbalance that is taking place in the mind. Our goal is to help you work on this level so you can make lasting changes, possibly for the first time ever. 

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