The 2018 Holiday Season Is Here!

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The 2018 Holiday Season Is Here!

Wow! The winter weather sure hit central Texas early this year! I hope everyone is keeping themselves and their pets warm!


The holiday season is a as stressful of a time of year, as it is lovely. Unfortunately, due to the stress we feel, we tend to fall out of sync with our regular routines that keeps us fit, healthy and grounded. We tend to let go of our workout routines, acupuncture appointments, massages and drop our healthy eating and  sleeping habits in place of running around shopping last minute, scrambling to finish up for the year at work and over-eating and drinking at all of those fabulous holiday parties! I'm not pointing fingers or judging because we ALL do this and we all KNOW that it's the worst thing to do to ourselves!

This time of the year is truly the time to keep those healthy lifestyle routines so that you can head into the new year feeling your best and ready to tackle those resolutions for 2019 head on! I'm mean, who isn't't ready to send 2018 off with a swift kick in the you know what!?

Now, this isn't't the time to try to start new lifestyle habits. Taking that on will add to the stress that naturally occurs around the holidays. We're trying to keep up the good habits we already have and continue making the good choices we already make. 

Try your best to keep hitting the gym, schedule those therapeutic appointments (and then actually go), get in that meditation for just 5 minutes before bed even though you are exhausted because there are going to be stresses you can't change so control what you can, YOU! Even if you have to shorten the time spent on the treadmill or force yourself to eat smaller portions at all those parties where the food is so divine your having a hard time not getting seconds... it'll be worth it when your eyes pop open on the morning of 1/1/2019 and your smiling at how well you've done for yourself!

In doing this, the biggest gift you will get this year is the satisfaction that you took control of your choices during one of the most difficult times in the year and you came out as good as when you went in, if not better! Use me, your friendly acupuncturist, your friends and family or even your online circle to help support you through the season if self motivation is a challenge for you. Hint, it is for most people!

So don your favorite ugly holiday sweater, put on your boots and hat, grab that green smoothie (we're staying healthy here remember...) and head into this season as the strongest version of you so far this year!

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With all the above being said, what better gift to give
than that of health!

Whole Health Acupuncture has gift certificates available
through the online store or in person!

It's the perfect stocking stuffer!

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Finally, THANK YOU ALL!!

You are my livelihood! The support I get from my patients means so much to me! Truly! I am ever grateful! Have very happy holidays everyone!

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Summer, CBD Oil and WHA's Room Refresh!

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Summer, CBD Oil and WHA's Room Refresh!

Let me start by saying happy summer 2018 dear patients! Thank you for your support and inspiration the year thus far! I wake up everyday because of you all!

Now... Let's start with the CBD Oil craze! I'm a big believer in CBD oil. Why? As some of you know I have and will always have (due to the nature of it) a broken back and arthritis in my spine. I started on CBD oil a few months ago after reading a lot about it and it has significantly reduced my pain, along with my selfcare routine of acupuncture, cupping, exercise and stretching. It helped almost immediately! I started suggesting to a couple of you (my patients and friends) to try it and all have reported astounding improvement in pain, inflammation and sleep. Colleagues have spoken with me about their own success and their patients successes with CBD oil too! I even have my cats on it! It's safe and beneficial for animals and children as well. Now, I offer it in my practice! The brands I subscribe are grown in the USA, full spectrum, organic and CO2 extracted with no filler oils. This provides for the highest quality and concentrations of pure CBD oil. Only the best for you!

So what is CBD oil exactly? We all have what is called an endocannabinoid system in our bodies. This is a system of cannabinoid receptors throughout out bodies. These receptors are involved in a number of bodily functions such as appetite, energy, immunity, memory, metabolism, nervous system regulation, sleep and stress response. We have two cannabinoid receptors, CBD 1 and CBD 2. CBD 1 receptors are located mainly in the brain and attract the THC component of cannabis. CBD 2 receptors are located throughout the body and the immune system. When we are referring to CBD oil, that is rapidly being recognized as a valuable medicine, we are talking about CBD 2. That is why when you take it, there are no psycoactive affects but those of pain and inflammation reduction, improvement with other conditions associated with CBD 2 receptors like epilepsy, Alzheimer's and seizures to name a few. It's a bit confusing, I know. There are many studies available out there for your reading pleasure. Next time your in, we can talk more about it!

Remember, contact me, patient or not, for you next CBD purchase before you go to a vape shop and get who knows what level of quality because you WILL get the highest quality here at Whole Health Acupuncture!

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Whole Health Acupuncture's treatment space has gotten a refresh! Haven't been in in awhile, come check it out or if you thinking about making an appointment and want to see the space you will heal in, head up to the top right and click the Treatment Space tab! My space is soothing, quiet and serene as it has always been with a few new touches.

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I'd like to end this write-up with a mention about the opioid crisis. You know about it and it's real and it's really scary. Many of us know someone who has an opioid addiction. I'm here to tell you acupuncture can be an incredibly powerful therapy for getting someone off of opioids as well as keeping them from ever having to start them to begin with! Again, there is so much research out there you can find about the benefits of acupuncture as it applies to pain reduction and addiction. 

There are multiple theories for how acupuncture works. I'll try to make this as understandable as possible.

1. The blood theory - acupuncture affects the blood concentrations of phospholipids, triglycerides and cholesterol.
2. The neurotransmitter theory - acupuncture affects higher brain areas and stimulates the release of neurotransmitters that influence the antinociceptive (pain) system and the immune system.
3. The vascular-interstitial theory - acupuncture affects the electrical system of the body, facilitationg the transfer of electrical energy between injured and normal tissues. 
4. The gate control theory - acupuncture activates the non-nociceptive signals in the dorsal horn (part of the spinal cord), "gating out" painful or harmful stimuli. Basically, acupuncture lights up the part of the spinal cord that keeps pain from entering it, therefore, the signal of pain doesn't reach the spinal cord or brain.
5. The autonomic nervous system theory - acupuncture stimulates the release of several of our bodies natural opioids such as acetylcholine and norepinephrine thus, reducing pain. 

Which ever theory you subscribe too, one or all, acupuncture works! It works best to prevent pain rather than treating it after it has begun. It is also more effective on acute pain rather than chronic. That's not to say it won't work on chronic pain, it does, it just takes longer. Your also asking yourself, how can I know that I'll have pain in the first place to even be able to prevent it? This is where knowing family history is useful or giving attention to that old football injury to your knee before it starts to hurt. Also, acupuncture can be done for general physical and mental well-being, you don't "need' a reason to get a treatment. Beware though, your insurance company may think otherwise! But that's a whole other newsletter!

How does this all apply to the opioid crisis? As we can see above, the theories describe how acupuncture affects our pain perception. If you know your going to have back surgery for instance, start an acupuncture routine before that procedure and continue it afterward! Avoid those harmful medications right off the bat!

What if you or someone you already know is addicted to opioids or another harmful substance? Acupuncture can help detoxify the body (not just from opioids) and reduce withdrawals. NADA (The National Acupuncture Detoxification Association) developed protocols, which I use readily for various conditions including addiction and PTSD, that are used in over 250 hospitals here and in England. It's currently estimated that over 700 addiction treatment centers utilize acupuncture!

The Joint Acupuncture Opioid Task Force, American Society of Acupuncturists and the Acupuncture Now Foundation put out a letter in January 2016 that stated acupuncture has the potential to reduce or even eliminate the need for opioids and non-opioid drugs while also helping with opioid addiction treatment.

The overall goal here is the reduction in the prescription/taking of harmful opioids which also is a costly addiction as well as a difficult one to kick. Whether you contact me about utilizing acupuncture to treat this or any other addiction, know that help is out there! If acupuncture doesn't speak to you, you can still use me as well as other practitioners as a resource to find a solution that is best for you or your loved ones!

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A final note...
Stay hydrated, keep that SPF 50 with you and reapply! Have a great summer all!

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Happy Chinese New Year & 2018!

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Happy Chinese New Year & 2018!

HAPPY YEAR OF THE DOG & 2018!!

What does the year of the Earth Dog in the Chinese Zodiac, bring us in 2018?

Such as dogs, people born under this sign tend to be friendly, loyal, kind, easy-going, honest and helpful to others. On the flip side, they can be cold, critical, stubborn, fall easily into pessimism and may have trouble communicating. When we think of the Earth's qualities, we think of rock, grounding, gravity, home and nourishment. Individual's under the Earth Dog sign also carry these qualities.

It is said that for those under the dog sign this year will place importance on family relationships, Earth Dogs should make positive life changes such as finally getting to the gym (or your acupuncturist...), quitting bad habits or starting that business they've always dreamed of! 

Unfortunately, when your year of the Chinese Zodiac comes around, it is said to be an unlucky year. Therefore, dogs should do their best to stay true to their most positive qualities and stay calm as well!

I believe we have the power to make of our lives what we want them to be! What are you Earth Dogs going to do this year to turn what could be a stressful year into a fruitful, positive one!?

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A small note about knee pain....

Often times, knee pain is due to a tight IT (iliotibial) Band. When that large tendon is tight, it will pull the knee cap laterally (the the outside) of the body causing pain, pressure and weakness to the kneecap or the delicate meniscus (cartilage) underneath.

A healthy does of acupuncture, electric stimulation and cupping along with stretching and exercise will fix it right up!


Email to get that bothersome knee pain taken care of today!

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September is Prostate Cancer Awareness Month!

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September is Prostate Cancer Awareness Month!

Prostate Cancer is the second most common cancer in U.S. men. The first being skin cancer. One out of every 7 men will develop cancer generally, after age 65. It is rare in men under 40. The good news is death from prostate cancer is rare! About 1 in every 39 men. Often, prostate cancer is found at autopsies unknown in life, to the man who has passed on, as he had absolutely no signs, symptoms or complications from it!

Diagnosis and treatment of prostate cancer varies greatly. There is a lot of controversy surrounding how and when to take action if you have been diagnosed. Commonly, your physician will suggest watching and waiting as the first step. Biopsies and other procedures run the risk of causing the cancer to spread past the prostate. Surgery can lead to permanent nerve damage resulting in erectile dysfunction, Peyronies disease and other problems.

Prostate cancer can't be prevented but knowing the risk factors can help in early detection.

  • Age - as stated above, rarely diagnosed in men under 40, chances increase by 50 and 6 in 10 cases are diagnosed in men over 65.
  • Race/Ethnicity - it is most common in African-American men and men of African ancestry. Unfortunately, African-American men are twice as likely to die from prostate cancer than other races. It occurs less often in Asian-American and Hispanic-Latino men. The reasons for these occurrences are unknown.
  • Geography - prostate cancer is most prevalent in North America, Northwestern Europe, Australia and the Caribbean islands. Again, reasons for this are not clear. Thoughts are that it relates mostly closely to lifestyle and diet differences in these countries as opposed to others.
  • Family History - this isn't't always the case though. Prostate cancer does occur in men with no family history of it. Having a father or brother who's had it doubles the chances of another blood related male in the family developing it.
  • Gene Changes - inherited changes in BRCA1 & BRCA2 (the same genes that mutate in breast cancer) can cause development of prostate cancer. Secondly, men with Lynch Syndrome are more likely to develop it.

The following are risk factors that have a less clear link to causing prostate cancer but have been found to play a roll and should be paid attention too.

  • Diet
  • Obesity
  • Smoking
  • Chemical Exposures
  • Chronic Prostate Inflammation/Infection
  • STD's
  • Vasectomies

If you think you may already have prostate cancer there are signs and symptoms you should look for. They include:

  • Urinary difficulties/changes
  • Blood in the urine or semen
  • Pain in the hips back or chest (accompanied with other symptoms)
  • Weakness or numbness of the legs (accompanied with other symptoms)
  • Incontinence of the bladder or bowels (accompanied with other symptoms)

Early detection is key to managing prostate cancer! Get your yearly physical exam and your PSA test guys! If prostate cancer is suspected, further testing will be done. Also, pay attention to your body and changes that occur that don't seem "normal" for you. Speak with your health care provider right away if your concerned your at risk for prostate cancer! As a specialist in men's health, I am here as a resource and form of treatment for you as well!

There are various forms of treatment for prostate cancer. Invasive and non-invasive. You, your doctor, your family and your other health care practitioners need to consider all of the options together, to make an informed decision about treatment. Acupuncture and herbology are incredibly powerful forms of prevention, treatment and recovery of prostate cancer! Again, the good news is that it is a treatable disease guys! Prognosis is good! 

The conclusion, be aware of your body, get your yearly physicals, eat well, exercise and manage stress. These are the things you can control since you can't control your genes! Acupuncture, herbs, supplements and massage are great additions to a healthy lifestyle now and into the future!

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Prostate Cancer Fighting Foods!

  • Tomatoes
  • Vegetables
  • Fruits
  • Fish
  • Green Tea

The above foods contain numerous healthy substances that help protect and fight against cancer! They should be in your diet everyday!

Research has shown that diets high in red meat and alcohol can increase one's risk of developing prostate cancer and therefore, should be eaten in limited quantities. 

Exercise

What isn't it good for!? Moderate to intense physical activity is 4-5 days a week and mild exercise the rest of the time, is paramount to overall health let alone, preventing and fighting against cancer!

You don't have to be a gym rat to get the movement you need to stay healthy! Explore various types of exercise to see what you enjoy most because that's what you'll ultimately stick with for the long haul!

A quick word about skin cancer, since it is the #1 cancer in men... 

WEAR SUNBLOCK! At least spf 30 daily and reapply, and if you need to be out for extended periods, stay covered up! If you have thin to little hair, wear a hat! This is most important for men in warm to hot climates such as down here in Texas.

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