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Acupuncture for colds and flu; how can it help? From the Asian perspective acupuncture is known to help prevent common colds and seasonal flu by improving the flow of vital-force energy (known as Qi) through the meridians. In Traditional Chinese Medicine one aspect of immune system is known as Wei Qi which translates as “defensive” Qi. Wei Qi flows near the surface of the body – protecting it from pathogens entering the body. Certain acupuncture points are known to strengthen/tonify Wei Qi and these are the points most commonly used in treatment.
Acupuncture helps to remove blockages in energy flow thus enhancing the natural healing mechanisms of the body. It is common in China to receive acupuncture prior to onset of cold and flu season to reduce the risk of becoming ill, especially for those with weak systems. Use of common herbs such as ginger, garlic, honey and the whites of green onions made into a tea also help to boost the immune system thereby reducing frequency and length of infections.
From the western medical perspective acupuncture is known to boost the immune system by elevating immune-enhancing hormones in the blood. It can reduce the risk of getting sick as well as speed recovery. Acupuncture and herbal treatments reduce the symptoms of nasal congestion, fatigue and body aches. By boosting the immune system it can also be used as part of an on-going health maintenance program during the fall and winter months. In addition to the herbs listed above boosting intake of vitamin C is also beneficial for immune function.
Acupuncture can also help the nervous system reset itself as we transition to a new season. The transition from summer to fall and from fall to winter puts physiological stress on the body. Acupuncture helps the body transition to the changes in light and temperature and thereby reduces physiological stress. Additionally it reduces emotional stress, anxiety and depression, digestive and sleep issues that sometimes accompany change of seasons.
At Cameron Wellness Life Spa our acupuncturists use very gentle techniques with very small pre-sterilized needles which makes discomfort minimal to none. Most people find acupuncture to be very relaxing. Ask about our herbal remedies for common colds and minor respiratory conditions.