Posts Tagged ‘Acupuncture’

Integrative Parkinson’s Disease Care Part One

July 25, 2015 Written by JP

Parkinson’s disease (PD) is in the news on a weekly basis. According to the National Parkinson’s Foundation, there are approximately 50,000 to 60,00 new cases of PD diagnosed each year in the US alone. And, currently, it is estimated that up to 6,000,000 adults are living with PD worldwide. Thankfully, a significant amount of research is being directed at finding a cause and successful treatment for Parkinson’s. Still, it’s widely acknowledged that there’s a long way to go before a cure can be claimed.

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Posted in Alternative Therapies, Exercise, Mental Health | 28 Comments & Updates

Integrative Stroke Recovery

September 30, 2013 Written by JP

Yearly, almost 800,000 adults in the United States will suffer a stroke. Of those, approximately 77% will be first time strokes. The remainder are classified as recurrent attacks. While sobering, there is also some optimistic news to report on the stroke front. Between the years of 1999 and 2009, incidents of stroke have declined by 33%. According to the American Heart Association, this improvement is largely attributable to better management of blood pressure, diabetes and other modifiable risk factors, including smoking cessation and weight management. In addition, dietary changes can also play a valuable role in preventing so-called “brain attacks”. In a previous column, I offered my own dietary prescription for a “Stroke Protection Diet”.

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Posted in Alternative Therapies, Heart Health, Nutrition | 15 Comments & Updates

Natural Health News for Women

September 30, 2012 Written by JP

This past weekend I was combing through hundreds of current studies involving natural health. I came across five trials that I thought would be particularly useful for women of all ages. Sharing this information with family and friends could very well make a difference in the life of one woman or perhaps many. In addition, you’ll honor the hard work being done behind the scenes by countless scientists who genuinely hope to improve the quality of affordable, effective and safe health care for women throughout the world.

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Posted in Alternative Therapies, Nutritional Supplements, Women's Health | 13 Comments & Updates

Complementary Lupus Care

July 30, 2012 Written by JP

Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), commonly referred to as lupus, is a chronic autoimmune disease that disproportionately affects younger women. Autoimmune diseases are characterized by an inappropriate response by the immune system which provokes an attack against healthy tissue. In the case of lupus, an inflammatory reaction occurs which can affect numerous sites in the body, including the cardiovascular system, the digestive tract and joints. The conventional management of lupus typically involves the use of anti-inflammatory drugs and corticosteroids that suppress immune function. Unfortunately, both of these pharmaceutically-based approaches carry the risk on unwanted side effects.

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Posted in Alternative Therapies, Mental Health, Nutritional Supplements | 12 Comments & Updates

Integrative Acupuncture

June 22, 2012 Written by JP

Acupuncture is a healing modality that has the potential to further the cause of integrative medicine, a form of care that combines alternative/complementary practices with allopathic or conventional treatment. For one thing, there’s an enormous amount of scientific research that has been and is being conducted on acupuncture. In addition, acupuncture is widely accepted as very safe and unlikely to conflict with allopathic treatment when applied by a knowledgeable practitioner. Finally, acupuncture is rarely advocated as a sole therapeutic option. Medications, physical therapy and even surgery can be used as adjuncts. All of these points tend to facilitate a greatly likelihood of acceptance and/or cooperation among physicians who aren’t generally holistically minded.

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Posted in Alternative Therapies, Heart Health, Mental Health | 12 Comments & Updates

Trigger Point Therapy Part One

March 7, 2012 Written by JP

The November-December edition of the journal Pain Research and Management describes a sad state of affairs that many patients and physicians are frustratingly aware of: “Despite many recent advances in the past 40 years in the understanding of pain mechanisms, and in pain diagnosis and management, considerable gaps in knowledge remain, with chronic pain present in epidemic proportions in most countries.” An underutilized resource known as trigger point therapy may very well help fill some of these noted gaps. And, there’s nobody better to address this potential avenue of healing and recovery than Valerie DeLaune, LAc.

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Posted in Alternative Therapies, Interviews | 6 Comments & Updates

Urinary Incontinence Alternatives

April 3, 2011 Written by JP

Many of the decisions we make in life are based on estimates and statistical probability. In health care, this means factoring in hereditary influences and general population figures to “guesstimate” the odds of developing virtually any conceivable medical condition or disease. Age must also be introduced into the equation. As we grow older, the incidence of various conditions such as arthritis, prostatic enlargement and urinary incontinence increase substantially. In previous columns, I’ve addressed several natural strategies that may minimize the risk and reduce the symptoms of arthritis and an enlarged prostate. Today’s focus is on three little-known techniques that may discourage the likelihood of age-related incontinence and limit the symptomatic impact of incontinence if it’s already established.
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Posted in Alternative Therapies, Food and Drink, Women's Health | 7 Comments & Updates

Coffee for Asthma

December 8, 2010 Written by JP

A client just asked me about a column she read in the New York Times. It dealt with the advisability of using coffee to manage asthma symptoms. Home remedies such as coffee and tea contain naturally occurring chemicals known as methylxanthines which act as bronchodilators. According to a recent summary article in the Cochrane Database of Systemic Reviews, caffeine can also reduce “respiratory muscle fatigue”. However, the noted benefits for asthmatics tend to be rather short lived with improvements of airway function lasting four hours at best. In my opinion, there are better ways of dealing with the chronic issues that affect patients with asthma. (1,2)
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Posted in Alternative Therapies, Food and Drink, Nutrition | 13 Comments & Updates

Botox Migraines

October 22, 2010 Written by JP

A news item that received a great deal of attention this past week was the FDA’s decision to approve Botox for the treatment of chronic migraines. This was welcome news for the estimated 12% of the US population who live with this debilitating form of headache pain. But as with all medications, symptomatic relief often comes at a price. The treatment itself requires 31 injections directed at seven specific points in the head and neck. In addition, a number of adverse reactions have been reported in relation to onabotulinumtoxin A. Documented side effects include the possibility of blurred vision, breathing problems, difficulty swallowing, muscle spasms or weakness and neck pain. A recent interview with the actress Dana Delany in Prevention magazine chronicles her own negative experience with cosmetic Botox which resulted in a “huge hematoma” and subsequent muscle and nerve damage in the eye region. (1,2)
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Posted in Alternative Therapies, Mental Health, Nutritional Supplements | 14 Comments & Updates

Acupuncture Controversy

September 8, 2010 Written by JP

A rather confrontational question was recently posed to me by a guest at a dinner party. The exchange itself was relatively brief so I didn’t get the chance to learn much about the inquisitor. But I suspect that he had at least some training in the conventional medical field. He wondered how in the world I could be supportive of unconventional practices such as acupuncture and guided imagery when there are countless medications that can produce similar effects in a more predictable manner. This “gentleman” went on to list a few of his favorite examples. My response was that many holistic practices tend to encourage the body to augment its own production of biochemicals rather than introducing foreign chemicals to accomplish a comparable end.
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Posted in Alternative Therapies, Mental Health, Women's Health | 23 Comments & Updates

Heartburn Medication Warning

June 4, 2010 Written by JP

There’s a big difference between the transient use of medications for acute conditions and long term administration in cases of chronic health concerns. Take one of the oldest remedies known to mankind: aspirin. An occasional aspirin to relieve a headache is significantly different than using it on a daily basis to help reduce the risk of a heart attack. In the short term, aspirin is unlikely to result in many side effects. But regular usage can provoke a number of serious adverse reactions and therapeutic effects. This is why it’s important for physicians to assess the expected benefits and risks of aspirin therapy prior to prescribing it. The same principle should hold true with regard to any medication that you may need to take for years upon years. (1,2)
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Posted in Alternative Therapies, Food and Drink, Nutritional Supplements | 15 Comments & Updates

Natural Dry Eye Remedies

February 5, 2010 Written by JP

When you travel there are many uncertainties that come with the territory. Cars break down at the most inopportune moments. Planes get delayed due to fog or security issues. Or perhaps the weather ends up deciding what attractions and sites you can or cannot visit. There’s a long list of unexpected complications that can rear their ugly heads while on the road. But there’s one thing I can always count on when we fly on an airplane or stay at a hotel: my eyes become dry and red. Most hotels and resorts are temperature controlled. The use of centralized air conditioning and heating ensures the comfort of guests and discourages the growth of bacteria and mold that can thrive in a more humid environment. In the grand scheme of things, vacation-related irritation of the eyes is a small price to pay for all of the pleasure that travel brings. However, for some people this sensation is chronic and unrelenting. Read more »

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Posted in Alternative Therapies, Nutrition, Nutritional Supplements | 16 Comments & Updates

Preventive Medicine

February 3, 2010 Written by JP

The term “alternative medicine” can be somewhat misleading. If you combine it with the word “complementary”, as in “alternative and complementary medicine”, the meaning becomes considerably more accurate. But even that string of words doesn’t fully convey the essence of holistic healing. The missing link can be summed up in three syllables: pre-ven-tive. It doesn’t sound very snappy, but the phrase “alternative, complementary and preventive medicine” does a fine job of encompassing what natural healing is all about. Read more »

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Posted in Alternative Therapies, Children's Health, Nutrition | 10 Comments & Updates

Bee Venom Therapy

October 28, 2009 Written by JP

Bees are invaluable members of the ecosystem. The sustainability of many of the foods we eat is directly dependent upon the pollination provided by these incredibly productive insects. The prospect of being stung by a bumble bee or a European honey bee is quite another story. We avoid being in close proximity to bees and hives because of this very concern. Some people are understandably fearful of the pain associated with stings. A much smaller segment of the population has yet another reason to fret: allergic reactions to bee venom. There are however certain individuals who seek out bees for the express purpose of getting stung repeatedly. Read more »

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Posted in Alternative Therapies | 6 Comments & Updates

Acupressure and Massage News

October 26, 2009 Written by JP

Mind-body therapies such acupressure and massage are entering the mainstream of modern medicine. These non-invasive techniques are proving themselves both in controlled scientific studies and in the “eyes” of health care consumers worldwide. Conventional doctors tend to be more open to these treatments because they’re unlikely to do any harm while, at the same time, they provoke positive feelings. This point of view is a bit dismissive but there’s also some logic to it. Any form of therapy that evokes positive sensations and stimulates beneficial chemical, hormonal and immunological changes in the body is likely to do some good. It doesn’t matter whether you believe in the underlying concepts or philosophy that accompanies the treatment itself. Read more »

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Posted in Alternative Therapies, Heart Health, Mental Health | 21 Comments & Updates

Lose Weight, Sleep Better

October 2, 2009 Written by JP

If you’re overweight and you snore at night, there’s a good chance you suffer from obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). People with this condition are unable to get adequate quantities of air through the nose and throat while sleeping. This can lead a lack of oxygen in the bloodstream and poor sleep quality due to frequent choking and loud snoring. Even if you set aside enough time to rest, you simply will not be well rested when you wake up. This drowsy state of mind puts people at higher risk for overall mortality resulting from accidents and cardiovascular related health events. The best natural way to address this serious condition is to lose as much excess weight as possible. Today I’ll share three safe and natural techniques that may help you achieve that goal. Read more »

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Posted in Alternative Therapies, Diet and Weight Loss, Nutrition | 8 Comments & Updates