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Where the best of Eastern medicine and Western science converge to form a comprehensive, cross-discipline approach. Listening, instead of dictating, allowing a deeper dialogue to manifest a more complete diagnosis. Revealing the true root causes behind symptoms and conditions and crafting unique health plans that empower you through education and inspiration to conquer bad habits and create better ones.

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Acupuncture During Pregnancy? Absolutely!

Many women find their way to acupuncture through a desire to get pregnant. As we all likely know, acupuncture is extremely beneficial for promoting fertility by regulating hormones, increasing blood flow to the uterus, and overall stress reduction. However, women aren’t always aware of the benefits of continuing acupuncture treatments throughout the pregnancy and even afterwards into their postpartum period.Since a large part of being an acupuncturist is education, it’s important to ensure our patients have the information they need to make informed decisions about their health care. There are a lot of questions and myths about acupuncture during pregnancy, which we will endevour to answer here.The foremost question asking if acupuncture is safe during pregnancy can be answered with a resounding: yes!...

The Science of Aromatherapy: How to Use Essential Oils for Emotional Wellbeing

Have you ever smelled something while walking down the street, and then be instantly taken back to a memory, a place, or a situation? That response comes from each of our olfactory nervous systems. Of all the five human senses, smell is the most direct way to access our mood, memory, emotions, and even physiology. That is why aromatherapy is so powerful. While it may seem like you are just simply smelling something, it’s actually a direct way to impact your mood and, therefore, your health at any given moment. Deliberate use of essential oils can radically transform your perspective and interrupt negative emotions or stress, which we know is the leading cause of illness. Aromatherapy isn’t just a fad or trend. Scientific research into...

The Connection Between your Gut and Brain

Chinese Medicine has long held that there is a connection between what you feel and how you feel. Western medicine research is beginning to understand the relationship between our guts and our minds called the “Gut-Brain Axis.” Our gut and brain have a steady ability to communicate via the nervous system, hormones, and the immune system.  Such communication greatly affects how we feel physically as well as emotionally.The gastrointestinal (GI) tract, has it’s very own nervous system called the enteric nervous system (ENS) which governs the movement and regulation of the digestive system. “Scientists call the enteric nervous system the “little brain”. But it’s not so little. The ENS is two thin layers of more than 100 million nerve cells lining your gastrointestinal tract from...

How to Have a Healthy Sweet Tooth

Sugar consumption is on the rise, and is a contributing factor for many health issues. The average American consumes 19.5 teaspoons of added sugar, including natural sweeteners, which is roughly 400 calories of added sugar per day! The American Heart Association (AHA) recommends no more than 6 teaspoons of added sugar per day for women and 9 teaspoons for men. The AHA limits children’s sugar consumption to 3-6 teaspoons per day.Artificial SweetenersWhile the consumption of refined sugar is on the rise, so are artificial sweeteners. These sweeteners such as Aspartame, Sucralose (Splenda), Ace K, and Saccharin have been debated for years in regards to their damaging side effects. While the FDA considers all of these sweeteners technically “safe,” they are undergoing increased scrutiny...

Research Supports Acupuncture for Weight Loss

Research has found acupuncture to be an effective tool in both weight loss and suppression of appetite. While the most effective way to lose weight is diet and exercise, maintaining the weight loss requires lifestyle changes. Acupuncture has been shown to create physiological changes in the body that reduce body mass index (BMI), waist circumference, body fat percentage, blood sugar levels, and lower the levels of peptides like leptin and ghrelin that are involved in appetite control.Here’s a look at the multiple ways that acupuncture can help with weight management:Acupuncture Promotes Healthy SleepChinese Medicine is very effective in treating insomnia and sleep issues. Studies show that sleep deprivation causes the brain to crave calorie-rich junk food. In chronic states of sleep deprivation, the...

Tips and Tricks to Achieving Weight Loss

Losing weight and maintaining the weight loss is a very difficult task. Finding the right diet that gives you the best and quickest results can also be confusing and overwhelming. A diet may work short term, but research has shown that diets actually don’t provide long-term results. In order to achieve and maintain your goal weight, you would need to make a lifestyle change. Leading a consistently healthy lifestyle by fulfilling your body’s individual needs, and exercising regularly will have you looking and feeling your best. What to Eat The key is to consume your calories wisely. Look for small-portioned foods that are filling and full of nutrients like fiber, protein, healthy fats, and antioxidants.High Fiber FoodsThese include chia seeds, flax seeds, or fresh veggies and berries....

Acupuncture for Pain Management

A new study recently published in Brain, A Journal of Neurology, has found new evidence showing that acupuncture not only works at a local anatomical level, but that it also influences the brain to rewrite a mental map of the body. This is an incredibly important finding, especially during a time where people are seeking alternative treatments that are minimally invasive and cost efficient.Researchers in the study explored the efficacy of acupuncture in helping to reduce pain in patients suffering from carpal tunnel syndrome, the most common entrapment neuropathy. The study was a single-blind, placebo controlled, randomized neuroimaging study where subjects received sixteen acupuncture treatments over eight weeks. They were divided into three groups by treatment type: electroacupuncture performed close to the affected hand,...

Natural Medicine for Children

When my three year old daughter had an ear infection recently, I was reminded of the power of Chinese Medicine when it comes to pediatric care.Otitis media, which is an inflammatory condition of the middle ear, is extremely common in children. The conventional medical approach is a course of antibiotics. However, given that my daughter had a mild case of otitis media, I opted to pursue natural remedies first and use antibiotics only if necessary. Our pediatrician fully supported this approach.Research has suggested that the microbiome affects our digestion, metabolism, immunity, skin health, mood, and even brain performance. Overuse and misuse of antibiotics leads to declining variety within the microbiome, which has been linked to autoimmune disease and increased susceptibility to chronic conditions...

Acupuncture for Allergies – IT’S AMAZING!

Asthma and allergic diseases, such as allergic rhinitis (hay fever), food allergy, and eczema, are common for all age groups in the United States. They are the 6th leading cause of chronic illness in the U.S. with an annual cost in excess of $18 billion. More than 50 million Americans suffer from allergies each year. Surprisingly, it is among the country’s most common, but overlooked, diseases.An allergy attack occurs when your immune system reacts to a foreign substance, called an allergen, which could be something you eat, inhale into your lungs, or touch. An allergen is any chemical substance of non-microbial origin that triggers an immune response in your body. An immune response is when your immune system, thinking the allergen is a foreign invader,...

Postpartum: What to Expect and Helpful Insights, Naturna, blog

Postpartum: What to Expect and Helpful Insights

The postpartum or postnatal period refers to the six weeks or so immediately following delivery. During this time, the mother's body reverses the physiological changes that occurred during pregnancy. Chinese medicine recognizes the postnatal period as a critical phase in the lives of both baby and mother. It takes several months for the mother’s endocrine system to return to its pre-pregnant state. This hormonal adjustment period may be lengthier in nursing mothers, as compared with non-nursing mothers.In Chinese culture, new mothers follow a tradition called zuo yue zi, which is roughly translated as “sitting the month.” According to this custom, a postpartum mother stays home for one month to recuperate while family members help take care of the baby, cook nutritious meals, and brew...

Complementary vs. Integrative Medicine, Naturna blog

Complementary vs. Integrative Medicine

Naturna will soon launch a mini-video series on the topic of Integrative Medicine. This blog is written to give clarity to the subject before launching into further discussion. Particular focus is on the differences between and benefits of Complementary and Integrative Medicine.The basic definitions are as follows:Complementary Medicine refers to a variety of modalities, including but not limited to, acupuncture, herbal medicine and homeopathy. Integrative Medicine is the combination of one or more fields of Complementary Medicine with modern Conventional or Western/Allopathic Medical approaches.Complementary Medicine is often referred to as alternative medicine. Although both definitions make sense, both are defining these various fields of medicine in relation to their “western” counterpart. The question is “complementary” or “alternative” to WHAT? Western/conventional medicine of course....

Why Acupuncture & Chinese Medicine for Fertility?, Christina Burns, Naturna Institute

Why Acupuncture & Chinese Medicine for Fertility?

Acupuncture is an effective and safe treatment option for women throughout the various stages of their hormonal life cycle. It’s very good at  restoring balance to the hormonal madness that may at times characterize the female reproductive system. As such, it has wide applications in the treatment of women’s health and fertility. Of course, this is not isolated to women. Men also benefit greatly from the use of Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine.Chinese Medicine and Acupuncture has derived much wisdom from a long tradition of clinical trials lasting over 3000 years. Many dedicated practitioners recorded their findings so that the generations of doctors to come could benefit from and share their knowledge and build on it. Most of us still use formulas in our practice that...

Staying Healthy with Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine in Winter, Naturna Institute, February 16, 2017

Staying Healthy with Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine in Winter

The winter season in New York has arrived, demonstrated by weeks of snow, rain, wind, and colder temperatures. Staying indoors and sleeping are more appealing as our bodies try to keep warm and conserve. Cravings for certain foods may also be at the forefront of our minds and bodies.In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), an organ and an element belongs to each season. Winter is the season of the kidneys, which holds the essence of our being and the root of our energy. To harmonize with winter, one must align with the "Yin" aspect of Chinese Medicine. Yin is dark, its movement is slow, and it represents cooler temperatures. In contrast, the Yang of the summer season, which is light, is more active and warm. Yin...

Chinese Medicine and Sex — How much is too much?

Culturally, I would say that we are kinda messed up about sex. Talking about it openly seems to make people withdraw in discomfort, even when it relates to reproduction.I specialize in treating reproductive health and fertility and still many of my patients apologize when asking my opinion on suggested timing and frequency of intercourse. While getting into a sociological study about sex is beyond the scope of this post, we can touch on a few interesting tidbits. Chinese Medicine gives an interesting perspective on male vs. female sexual practices. For example, for women sex is thought to diffuse negative and potentially toxic pent up energy. Without sufficient sex, we may end up in a disease state. Imagine that? Does anyone have that girlfriend that is...