TSY-1 herbs

New Study Says Chinese Herbs May Aid Bone Marrow

UCLA researchers have just published a new study on Chinese herbs.  They have been researching a Chinese herbal formula they called TSY-1 to  increased telomerase activity in normal blood cells but decreased it in cancer cells.

 

This combination of Chinese herbs has been used in China for many years to treat aplastic anemia, a condition where the body stops producing enough new blood cells and myelodysplastic syndrome or preleukemia; both are associated with telomerase abnormality.

 

Telomerase is an enzyme responsible for the production of telomeres.  The results indicate that telomerase-based treatments may play an important role in treating both blood cell deficiency and cancer.

The five-year study, led by UCLA Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center member Dr. Jianyu Rao, measured the ability of TSY-1 to affect telomerase activity in cancer cells lines.   Rao’s team used various approaches, including assays of telomerase activity, measurement of cell growth, and gene expression profiling of TSY-1 treated cells, to determine how it acts. The results showed that the target of TSY-1 activity is the TERT gene. TERT is the major regulatory component of telomerase activity.

 

The findings provide the foundation and support for further clinical studies to demonstrate the clinical benefit of the Chinese herbs in treatment for cancer and blood cell deficiencies.

 

The study is published online in the journal OncoTarget Link to PDF of study here

For Chinese herbs like the ones used in this study contact us at 877-818-9990 or [email protected]

sperm builder

Sperm Quality – The New Frontier of Men’s Health

Boost Sperm Quality Naturally

It has been said, we must accept something before we can change it. This is definitely the case when discussing male sperm health.  When it comes to infertility, the focus is placed on women. Men are usually not included when we look at “conception” issues.

Maybe it’s a denial issue, or it feels “UN-manly” for men to seek treatment options when conception issues arise.  What most people have yet to understand is that about 40 to 60 percent of infertility problems today are linked to male-related factors.  What this means is for a couple to conceive, both the male and female have to be healthy. But, we need to come to grips with this new “normal” because compromised sperm health is more common than previously known.

Sperm health is determined by the quantity of sperm a man produces, the structure or morphology and the mobility of the sperm. Problems such as abnormal sperm size and shape, low sperm count, abnormal liquefaction and low motility are all categorized under male infertility. Research varies but some shows a 40% decrease in sperm quantity and quality in the past 50 years. The reasons for the decline are conjecture, but most researchers agree sperm are sensitive to environmental toxins, stress, diet and technology we are using daily. Male infertility and low sperm production can also be effected by genetics, age, testosterone production and testicular pathologies and emotions.

Reliable, long term research on male sperm counts do not exist, unfortunately.  However, in a recent study of British dogs, yes canine, over the last 26 years showed a drop of 1-2% of sperm motility yearly.  Why should we care about a study done on dogs? Declining canine fertility may shed light on human fertility. The importance of this study, is not just the 50% decline in canine sperm but researchers saw a clear connection between environmental chemicals affecting both humans and dogs. Even though male fertility research over the past few decades has shown a downward trend, “there has always been argument about the consistency and accuracy of the findings,” says Richard Lea of Nottingham University School of Veterinary Medicine and Science. Dr. Lea confirmed the presence of chemicals, ubiquitous to both humans and dogs as the link to the decline in sperm quality. Dogs live in our homes and are exposed to many of the same chemicals as humans.  “If you think about it, we are exposed to a [chemical] cocktail. Who knows how many chemicals are out there and what they are doing? It gets even more complicated when you start to look at the effects of mixtures of chemicals,” Dr. Lea said. Hopefully soon, we will have similar human studies measuring sperm health over several decades.

 male infertility boost sperm

The question you may be asking is; how can we help men improve infertility issues?

There are some excellent options beyond prescription medication.  Options to consider are lifestyle changes, (i.e. smoking) reducing exposure to toxins and incorporating  acupuncture and herbal medicines.  Alternative/Functional Medicine and Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) approaches always start by looking at the entire body and considering the root cause of the pathology. The Classic literature from TCM states: The experienced physician, will always consider the source.  (Li Zhongzi, A Primer of Medical Objectives (Yizong Bidu), 1637)  Therefore, when treat infertility one has to treat the whole body because only a healthy body can produce healthy sperm. TCM theory classifies a lack of sperm or a lack of healthy sperm into one or more possible diagnoses. The three primary diagnoses include:

 

Deficiency Syndrome

 In Western medicine terminology this would be dysfunction in the endocrine system. Men with low testosterone and excess estrogen fall under this diagnosis.

 

Stagnation Syndrome

 The sexual organs are functioning, hormone levels are normal but blood flow to the sexual organs is lacking. Men who experience soft erections or cannot maintain an erection or ejaculation would be categorized as having stagnation in TCM terms.

 

Heat Syndrome

This may be associated with an infection or inflammatory process and can produce abnormal semen quality. Enlarged prostates and sexually transmitted diseases are a few of the Western diagnoses that fall under this syndrome. Boxer shorts, not briefs would generally be a good suggestion for men in this category along with avoiding hot tubs and steam and sauna rooms.

 

We are certainly not the first generation to struggle with infertility. Chinese medicine texts tell us ancient cultures as far back as 200 AD. referenced treatments to help men and women conceive. Some TCM documents list treatment for infertility including complex Chinese herbal formulas often using fifteen herbs or more. Many of these formulas are still used today and include everything from the bark, leaves, root, fruits, seeds and flowers of various botanicals. One commonality found in these formulas is they often contain seeds of the plants. Considering sperm is a man’s seed, this makes perfect sense. The use of professionally prepared herbal medicine to treat male infertility is occurring worldwide. In Taiwan, through their National Health Insurance plan, citizens can receive Chinese herbs daily for every type of illness including infertility. While many fertility issues can be resolved through Chinese herbal medicine, often times the patients overall health improvement is the primary goal.

 

Lifestyle modifications should also be considered to keep sperm healthy and happy in our technology driven world. The use of laptop computers are often overlooked in men’s health discussions. Laptops emit radiation and heat and should not be on a man’s lap if he is trying to optimize his sperm health.  Laptops can be used on a table, not a lap. This is especially important for those men who fall under the category of “Heat Syndrome”.  Cell phones are another 21st century hazard. The risk is real for men who carry a phone in their front pant pocket all day, every day.  Dr. Davis, an award-winning scientist discusses the health risks and concerns associated with cell phones and sperm motility in her book Disconnect. According to Dr. Davis, “When using phones, distance is your friend, because radiation exposure falls off dramatically the farther away from the brain or body you use your phone,” Dr. Davis noted. “If you read the fine print warnings that come with all smart phones today they are quite clear, phones should not be used next to the brain or body, or kept in the pocket.”  Leg and arm bands are safer options for carrying cell phones.

Sperm awareness needs to be addressed in men’s health circles today. The number of men seeking treatment options is rising and reproductive issues are no longer just a “woman’s problem”.  Getting the correct diagnosis is critical but more importantly make sure you treat the whole individual. Herbal treatment, acupuncture and life style changes are excellent options and more common throughout Asia than the West.  Hopefully, men everywhere will begin considering these viable treatment options. Whichever type of treatment a man chooses, the journey begins with the acceptance that male infertility exists.

Chinese herbs organic

How Long Can You Last? The Test of Time

Chinese herbs Tong Ren TongIn the business world when economic times get tough a business that weathers the storm is a true survivor. A standout,  that must have incredibly popular products that make people come back for more even when unemployment is high and people are unwilling to spend. A business that survives  must have proven itself worthy of providing  great products at a fair price. Products that people simply can’t do without.  When a business does this for 70  to 100 years  or more we are all impressed. The stamina, the fortitude and adaptability to survive for so many years  must mean this business has some incredible products which we all crave.  Ford Motor Company  and Kodak  come to mind, some of the oldest American businesses.

But what do you think about a business that has survived providing the same products for 341 years?  It is truly unheard of in America. We have only been an independent nation for 240 years and no single business has survived since revolutionary days.  Yet, a Chinese herb pharmacy called Tong Ren Tong is still in business after 341 continuous years. They still sell Chinese herbs, just as they did in the year 1669.  In fact, in Beijing they operate from the same location since 1702!

They are a household name in China, Hong Kong and much of Asia. They operate pharmacies, drug retailers and various joint ventures throughout 13 countries in  Asia. Wouldn’t you be a household name if you were 345 years old?   The picture above is me standing in front of their Hong Kong store. (No pictures were allowed inside)

 

Tong Ren Tang was the supplier of medicinal Chinese herbs to the royals of the Qing Dynasty, from 1669 until their collapse  1911. They have succeed in weathering the storms of Chinese government takeovers, communism and now globalization and prescription medications. Tong Ren has been  successful  for hundreds of years because Chinese herbs work, it’s as simple as that.   Chinese herbs worked 300 hundred years ago and they work today for all kinds of illnesses. Whether your buying ginseng or reishi mushrooms Tong Ren has the herbs and they know how to prescribe them for everything from the common cold to cancer. 

 

When you have incredibly popular products that work well, are needed by the masses and provide real value at a fair price your business will survive regardless of the economic times and government takeovers. Chinese herbs have proven to be that commodity. Chinese herbs are medicine that continues to heal people, even centuries after they were first introduced.  

 

goji-organic-herbs

Are You Eating the Chinese Herb Goji Berries For Health?

Originally from China, Goji berries have been used in Chinese

Pacific Herbs goji berry

Medicine and are considered one of the best Chinese herbs to boost your energy.  This little red berry is packed with vitamins, minerals and even iron.

Traditional Chinese Medicine uses goji berries for many ailments including back pain, low energy, dizziness and to improve eyesight.  Goji berries can be found at most natural foods grocery stores today but can get a bit pricey.  If you love this little berry like I do you may want to consider buying a goji plant.  I’ve found goji berries can grow in many climates and is a wonderful plant to have in your yard or even a patio container. Add the little red berries to a bowl of cereal or oatmeal or enjoy them as a snack. This Chinese herbs is a healthy addition to any diet and will give you a boost of energy every time you eat a handful. Concentrated granules of goji berries are a great way to use this Chinese herb in shakes and smoothies or as a delicious cup of tea. Goji concentrate is available from Pacific Herbs at www.PacHerbs.com.

Cinnamon-sugar-control-health

Can Cinnamon Help Protect You From Cancer?

University of Arizona College of Pharmacy Researchers and the UA Cancer Center say a compound found in cinnamon is a potent colorectal cancer preventor.

New research suggests eating cinnamon may help prevent colorectal cancer, at least in mice.

Previous research has linked this spice to blood pressure reduction and blood sugar control.

Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) has used both the cinnamon tree bark and cinnamon tree branches for over a thousand years.

The bark of the tree is known as Gui Zhi and used in Chinese herbal formulations as a warming and dispersing herb. It helps protect against catching a cold and it can facilitate at warming the Qi, or energy of the body.

Researchers at Arizona College of Pharmacy found the compound that gives cinnamon its distinctive smell and flavor, cinnamaldehyde, also seems to protect rodents against colorectal cancer.

“This is a significant finding,” UA Cancer Center researcher Dr. Donna Zhang, said in a press release. “The next steps are to see if the spice alone can protect against cancer, and see if results can be replicated in people.”

“Can cinnamon do it, now that we know pure cinnamaldehyde can?” he said. “And can we use cinnamaldehyde or cinnamon as a weapon to go after other major diseases, such as inflammatory dysregulation and diabetes? “

Chinese herbs like cinnamon have always been used in TCM with other herbs in synergistic combinations. Using this Chinese herb or any others as a single herb should only be done under the care of a professional trained in Chinese medicine or herbal medicine.  In TCM, Chinese herbs are most often combined to enhance or create an entourage effect for the desired action and to minimize any potential side effects.  Should you have any questions about cinnamon or other Chinese herbs,   get in touch with Cathy at Pacific Herbs for a free consultation at 877-818-9990.

Summer Kickoff Sale – 20% Off

Chinese herbal remedies

Pacific Herbs is celebrating summer

with a 72 hour – 20% OFF sale. (code: summer15)

 

Pacific Herbs Logo

Pacific Herbs has BIG NEWS!


We’re excited to share all our BIG NEWS.

 

During my recent trip to China I was lucky enough to be introduced

 

to an incredible Chinese doctor who saw a need for tested, pure, authentic

Chinese herbal medicine.  This incredible woman has won many distinguished awards

from the Chinese government and medical associations.

 

In the picture below I’m standing next to  Dr. Zhou.

I was incredibly honored and inspired to meet a revolutionary woman who’s DONE IT!

From a 12 year old farm worker with little or no education, to a distinguished Medical Doctor

and Chairman of the Board.

CEO TianJiang

Dr. Zhou Jialin’s dreamed this new Chinese herb pharmaceutical factory into existence. Her dream began 30 years ago and science and technology has made it a reality. The computer testing equipment alone costs millions.  I can honestly say I was blown away!  video here

Dr. Jialin’s integrity to produce the safest, cleanest herbal extracts has been vital to her success.
There is so much to tell, I hardly know where to begin. Our first video tour is ready. Watch it here!

You can see a pictures of the brand new, state-of-the-art facility on the

Pacific Herbs facebook page and at PacHerbs.com

She is a shining example of how a small dream can become a reality, helping millions.

She is truly an inspiration to us all, to BECOME our dreams and revolutionize health care.

 

Our other EXCITING announcements: New iSleep packaging has

arrived packed with tasty granules from TianJiang Pharmaceutical

and no unnecessary fillers.  Try it today!

(Same great taste with the same efficacy and formula as our previous package.)

Thank you for indulging me in a long news update.

 

Please feel free to pick up the phone if you have any questions on safe use of herbs.

 

Call me, I offer phone consults Noon- 5 PST  –  877-818-9990

 

Looking forward to helping you BE WELL and enjoy the summer.

Cathy Signature

Cathy Margolin L.Ac., Dipl. OM  – Founder of Pacific Herbs

Pacific Herbs Logo
P.S. Connect with us on Instagram: pacificherbs

P.S.S. Sale code is:  summer15   (no caps – no spaces) 

 

Can Chinese Medicine Heal Your Gut?

Heal Your Gut with Chinese MedicineUsing traditional Chinese Medicine to heal gut issues

Our rapidly changing world is challenging our health, in particular our digestive health. In this era of a degrading food supply, systemic inflammation and overuse of drugs (i.e. antibiotics), the landscape of our guts has been altered. As a result of antibiotic overuse, superbugs (a.k.a. deadly antibiotic resistant bacteria) are on the rise. The question is, can we heal our gut and reverse the damage already done? A solution you may not have considered is Acupuncture and Eastern /Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). A Licensed Acupuncturist/Chinese Medicine doctor is well trained to help you repair and improve your digestive health and gut bacteria.

The real definition of Alternative Medicine:

Never before in history have we had to overcome the effects of man-made drugs in the quantities we are seeing today. Would you believe, this is not the first time in history that doctors needed to find a cure for the gut? A cornerstone of Traditional Chinese Medicine is a healthy digestive tract. Solutions for digestive health were pondered over 800 years ago when many TCM books and theories were first written on the importance of the stomach, pancreas and the entire digestive system. Chinese /Eastern medicine approach is very different than the Western medicine approach. Eastern medicine relies upon several holistic healing methods including healing cuisine, herbs and acupuncture and lifestyle modifications. Licensed Acupuncturists in the U.S. are trained in these theories and can help you get your gut back on track.

With the advent of the worldwide Microbiome Project science is confirming microscopic bacterial colonies living in our digestive tract have important jobs for both our physical and mental well being. Chinese/Eastern medicine has always known if we nourish our gut, we in turn nourish ourselves. Today we are at a crossroad, we can no longer ignore our guts. Because, “for hundreds of thousands of years bacterial and human cells have existed in a peaceful symbiosis that is responsible for the health and equilibrium of our body. Now, this invisible Eden is being irrevocably damaged by some of our most revered medical advances—antibiotics—threatening the extinction of our irreplaceable microbes with terrible health consequences. “ 1

Chinese/Eastern medicine teaches the connection between a healthy gut and a healthy body. Here are 10 reasons why a Licensed Acupuncturist/Doctor of Oriental Medicine is the best health practitioner to help you heal your gut.

1. A Licensed Acupuncturist trained in Traditional Chinese Medicine will counsel and treat your particular health challenge with several modalities, foods, acupuncture treatments, herbs and counseling. (Check that your Acupuncturist is comprehensively trained and received a Masters or Doctorate degree in Oriental Medicine or Chinese Medicine, not just a few weekend courses.)

2. Acupuncture treatments received quarterly can improve your general health and digestive health by strengthening your spleen and stomach channels. (In Western medicine terms this is your digestive system.) The World Health Organization has approved acupuncture treatments for worldwide use and throughout Asia acupuncture is covered by national health insurance policies. The U.S. is lagging behind but quickly catching up, as California Insurance providers are now mandated to cover acupuncture treatments.

3. Acupuncture treatments including ear protocols can help reduce food cravings. This is especially important since processed foods are the most commonly craved foods. Processed foods and supplements contain emulsifiers which are harmful to your gut. Limiting ingredients commonly called “lecithin” derived from soy (likely GMO), Datem, (found in commercial breads) Calcium propionate, Cmc and polysorbate 80, is a first step at repairing gut absorption problems. 2

4. An Acupuncturist will tell you to avoid antibacterial hand sanitizing products. Eastern medicine recognizes bacterial diversity is good. There are safe, natural cleaning products for your body and surroundings. (Ok, you can do this on your own but it took an Acupuncturist to tell you this and get your attention on this subject.)

5. Acupuncture and Traditional Chinese herbal remedies can boost your immune system and reduce or eliminate the need for prescription antibiotics.

6. An Acupuncturist will tell you to avoid meat fed antibiotics. (Again, possible without an Acupuncturist, but more importantly, a Licensed Acupuncturist is trained in nutrition and can help you look at your food journal and together you can create a healthy eating plan.)

7. Acupuncturists can teach you which Pre-biotics foods to eat every day and counsel you on what foods are right for your body. Prebiotics foods are commonly used in Traditional Chinese Medicine and food is medicine. Prebiotics enhance the growth of beneficial bacteria and can be found in fermented foods such as kimichi, sauerkraut, pickles, kombucha, miso and other fermented foods. A daily sampling of new live bacteria from fermented foods makes your gut community more adaptable. (Hint, Eastern medicine doctors are trained to know this stuff.)

8. Ask an Acupuncturist if Chinese herbs can help you. There are many traditional herbs used throughout Asia and Chinese/Eastern medicine to support healthy gut bacteria. For example;
Astragalus (also known as Huang Qi) is an extremely powerful herb used alone or in formulas. Huang Qi’s high polysaccharides content is fantastic at improving overall immune health and the growth of healthy bacteria.3
Other beneficial herbs for the spleen and stomach channels are codonopsis (dangshen), atractylodes (bai zhu), Chinese angelica (dang gui) dioscorea (shan yao), lotus seed (lianzi), roasted ginger (paojiang), longan (long yan rou) and baked licorice (zhi gan cao). 4

9. A Licensed Acupuncturist, trained in herbs will know which Chinese herb formula can best help you. Treating a compromised or weak digestion with herbs should be done by only individuals who are Licensed professionals. Look for a Licensed Acupuncturist and/ or Oriental Medicine Doctor’s (DOM) trained in herbs to prescribe a custom or patent herbal blend such as the following. Oneherbal combinations for a compromised gut is Si Jun Zi Tang also known as Four Gentleman Decoction.

 

As we learn more about our gut bacteria and the origins of our immune systems we must explore all the healing options. Using traditional chinese medicine to heal gut problems can be a valid and effective solution. In today’s world we can no longer ignore the effects of superbugs, toxic foods and toxic lifestyles. Licensed Acupuncturists / DOM can help you fortify your overall health and vitality. Many insurance plans cover acupuncture visits and in California insurance companies are required to cover Licensed Acupuncturists. Don’t wait another day to improve your overall health and vitality. TCM is one of the world’s oldest systems of medicine, is proven effective and has treatment protocols for today’s biggest health challenges.

 

References:

1. Blaser, M. 2014 Missing Microbes, How the Overuse of Antibiotics Is Fueling Our Modern Plagues, Henry Holt and Co. April 2014

2. Food Quality & Safety magazine, Re-Evaluating Additives on the GRAS List by Maybelle Cowan-Lincoln April/May 2013

3. Terry Bone, Principals and Practice of Phototherapy, Modern Herbal Medicine 2nd Edition Elsevier 2013 pg. 381-389

4. Institute For Traditional Medicine, http://www.itmonline.org/5organs/spleen.htm

“Some of My Best Friends are Germs”. The New York Times Magazine May 15, 2013. Dr. Justin Sonnenburg, Stanford Microbiologist.

Can Chinese Medicine Heal Your Gut?

Our rapidly changing world is challenging our health, in particular our digestive health. In this era of a degrading food supply, systemic inflammation and overuse of drugs (i.e. antibiotics), the landscape of our guts has been altered. As a result of antibiotic overuse, superbugs (a.k.a. deadly antibiotic resistant bacteria) are on the rise. The question is, can we heal our gut and reverse the damage already done? A solution you may not have considered is Acupuncture and Eastern /Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). A Licensed Acupuncturist/Chinese Medicine doctor is well trained to help you repair and improve your digestive health and gut bacteria.

Never before in history have we had to overcome the effects of man-made drugs in the quantities we are The real definition of Alternative Medicineseeing today. Would you believe, this is not the first time in history that doctors needed to find a cure for the gut? A cornerstone of Traditional Chinese Medicine is a healthy digestive tract. Solutions for digestive health were pondered over 800 years ago when many TCM books and theories were first written on the importance of the stomach, pancreas and the entire digestive system. Chinese /Eastern medicine approach is very different than the Western medicine approach. Eastern medicine relies upon several holistic healing methods including healing cuisine, herbs and acupuncture and lifestyle modifications. Licensed Acupuncturists in the U.S. are trained in these theories and can help you get your gut back on track.

With the advent of the worldwide Microbiome Project science is confirming microscopic bacterial colonies living in our digestive tract have important jobs for both our physical and mental well being. Chinese/Eastern medicine has always known if we nourish our gut, we in turn nourish ourselves. Today we are at a crossroad, we can no longer ignore our guts. Because, “for hundreds of thousands of years bacterial and human cells have existed in a peaceful symbiosis that is responsible for the health and equilibrium of our body. Now, this invisible Eden is being irrevocably damaged by some of our most revered medical advances—antibiotics—threatening the extinction of our irreplaceable microbes with terrible health consequences. “ 1

Chinese/Eastern medicine teaches the connection between a healthy gut and a healthy body. Here are 10 reasons why a Licensed Acupuncturist/Doctor of Oriental Medicine is the best health practitioner to help you heal your gut.

1. A Licensed Acupuncturist trained in Traditional Chinese Medicine will counsel and treat your particular health challenge with several modalities, foods, acupuncture treatments, herbs and counseling. (Check that your Acupuncturist is comprehensively trained and received a Masters or Doctorate degree in Oriental Medicine or Chinese Medicine, not just a few weekend courses.)

2. Acupuncture treatments received quarterly can improve your general health and digestive health by strengthening your spleen and stomach channels. (In Western medicine terms this is your digestive system.) The World Health Organization has approved acupuncture treatments for worldwide use and throughout Asia acupuncture is covered by national health insurance policies. The U.S. is lagging behind but quickly catching up, as California Insurance providers are now mandated to cover acupuncture treatments.

3. Acupuncture treatments including ear protocols can help reduce food cravings. This is especially important since processed foods are the most commonly craved foods. Processed foods and supplements contain emulsifiers which are harmful to your gut. Limiting ingredients commonly called “lecithin” derived from soy (likely GMO), Datem, (found in commercial breads) Calcium propionate, Cmc and polysorbate 80, is a first step at repairing gut absorption problems. 2

4. An Acupuncturist will tell you to avoid antibacterial hand sanitizing products. Eastern medicine recognizes bacterial diversity is good. There are safe, natural cleaning products for your body and surroundings. (Ok, you can do this on your own but it took an Acupuncturist to tell you this and get your attention on this subject.)

5. Acupuncture and Traditional Chinese herbal remedies can boost your immune system and reduce or eliminate the need for prescription antibiotics.

6. An Acupuncturist will tell you to avoid meat fed antibiotics. (Again, possible without an Acupuncturist, but more importantly, a Licensed Acupuncturist is trained in nutrition and can help you look at your food journal and together you can create a healthy eating plan.)

7. Acupuncturists can teach you which Pre-biotics foods to eat every day and counsel you on what foods are right for your body. Prebiotics foods are commonly used in Traditional Chinese Medicine and food is medicine. Prebiotics enhance the growth of beneficial bacteria and can be found in fermented foods such as kimichi, sauerkraut, pickles, kombucha, miso and other fermented foods. A daily sampling of new live bacteria from fermented foods makes your gut community more adaptable. (Hint, Eastern medicine doctors are trained to know this stuff.)

8. Ask an Acupuncturist if Chinese herbs can help you. There are many traditional herbs used throughout Asia and Chinese/Eastern medicine to support healthy gut bacteria. For example;
Astragalus (also known as Huang Qi) is an extremely powerful herb used alone or in formulas. Huang Qi’s high polysaccharides content is fantastic at improving overall immune health and the growth of healthy bacteria.3
Other beneficial herbs for the spleen and stomach channels are codonopsis (dangshen), atractylodes (bai zhu), Chinese angelica (dang gui) dioscorea (shan yao), lotus seed (lianzi), roasted ginger (paojiang), longan (long yan rou) and baked licorice (zhi gan cao). 4

9. A Licensed Acupuncturist, trained in herbs will know which Chinese herb formula can best help you. Treating a compromised or weak digestion with herbs should be done by only individuals who are Licensed professionals. Look for a Licensed Acupuncturist and/ or Oriental Medicine Doctor’s (DOM) trained in herbs to prescribe a custom or patent herbal blend such as the following. Oneherbal combinations for a compromised gut is Si Jun Zi Tang also known as Four Gentleman Decoction.

As we learn more about our gut bacteria and the origins of our immune systems we must explore all the healing options. In today’s world we can no longer ignore the effects of superbugs, toxic foods and toxic lifestyles. Licensed Acupuncturists / DOM can help you fortify your overall health and vitality. Many insurance plans cover acupuncture visits and in California insurance companies are required to cover Licensed Acupuncturists. Don’t wait another day to improve your overall health and vitality. TCM is one of the world’s oldest systems of medicine, is proven effective and has treatment protocols for today’s biggest health challenges.


References:

1. Blaser, M. 2014 Missing Microbes, How the Overuse of Antibiotics Is Fueling Our Modern Plagues, Henry Holt and Co. April 2014

2. Food Quality & Safety magazine, Re-Evaluating Additives on the GRAS List by Maybelle Cowan-Lincoln April/May 2013

3. Terry Bone, Principals and Practice of Phototherapy, Modern Herbal Medicine 2nd Edition Elsevier 2013 pg. 381-389

4. Institute For Traditional Medicine, http://www.itmonline.org/5organs/spleen.htm

“Some of My Best Friends are Germs”. The New York Times Magazine May 15, 2013. Dr. Justin Sonnenburg, Stanford Microbiologist.

 

Ancient Chinese Medicine Finds Buried Treasure in Bamboo

Chinese herbs

What can bamboo tell us about Chinese herbal medicine?

 

Once upon a time, bamboo was used as paper and notes about the medicine of the day were written on it.

Then one day, after many years, someone decide to build a subway. What they dug up is legendary, 920 bamboo strips, dating back to the year 260 BC. This writing on bamboo strips  is proving to be some of the earliest known writings from Traditional Chinese medicine. The remarkably well preserved bamboo is telling us much about Chinese Medicine and Chinese herbs used over 2000 years ago and still used today.

A total of 9 medical books were found, records from the Chinese doctor Bian Que, who is called the “Grand Historian”. The archaeological discovery is one of the worlds richest for Traditional Chinese Medicine. A truly incredible and rare. Bian Que was said to have invented pulse taking. It’s amazing to learn the same Chinese herbs and Chinese medicine techniques which have now been practiced and perfected for over 2000 years ago.

Want to learn more about how bamboo is used to heal our body in TCM, Traditional Chinese Medicine.  Check this out.

 

Chinese Herb Prices Are Skyrocketing

The global Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) industry has naturally felt the impact of inflation throughout past years; in 2010, however, herbs used widely in TCM experienced much higher price increases than usual. The rate of inflation in China is now at its highest level in over 2 years,1 and the country’s various enterprises, including its market for herbs, are feeling the brunt of this situation. For example, TCM products sold in 2010 in China—especially in Northern and Eastern Chinese cities, such as Anguo and Shanghai—most of which were medicinal herbs, doubled in price (on average).1-3 Prices of certain ingredients and particularly popular herbs have risen considerably higher.1-7

Many factors are being blamed for the elevated prices, including cogent market demand, the Yuan’s increasing strength, weather/climate changes, herbs being cultivated more than wild collected, general economic proceedings, recent public health crises, and herbal supply shortages.1-7 Approximately 85% of the total amount of Chinese traditional medicines in the market are said to have seen surges in price, according to various online reports referencing a recent pronouncement by the China Association of Traditional Chinese Medicine (CATCM).3,4 Other reports by CATCM found that the cost of over 25% of herbal medicines at least doubled in the second half of 2010,2 and that some raw herbal materials and finished herbal medicine products have supposedly seen price spikes as steep as 700% over the past year.3

http://www.bbc.com/news/business-12172173

What are Herbal Decoctions Anyway?

Ever Heard of a Decoction?    

Does it conjure up images of a witches brew?

 

Decoction literally means to concentrate the essence of a substance by heating or boiling, especially a medicinal preparation made from a plant.

This is exactly the method of preparation Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) uses to extract or release the chemicals stored in botanicals used for medicinal purposes. 

 

In fact, this was the way I was first introduced to Chinese herbal medicine.  I visited a Licensed Acupuncturist/Doctor of Oriental Medicine whom I was referred to me by my OB/GYN.  Yes, I was extremely fortunate to have an alternative minded OB/GYN who understood just enough about herbs to refer me to a professional.  I was 9 1/2 months pregnant.  (A small exaggeration, but this is how I felt.) The baby was overdue and there were no signs of labor.  I wanted a natural, gentle way to encourage my body into labor.  Rather than experimenting with a bottle of capsules my doctor insisted I see a Licensed Acupuncturist/Herbalist for a safe herbal prescription.

 

After a lengthy visit with the Chinese Medicine doctor,  I had my bag of roots, barks and berries boiling in my kitchen.  I cooked them as instructed. The correct word is actually, “DECOCTED”. This is generally boiling them at the appropriate temperature, for a certain amount of time, with a set amount of purified water. I drank them for three days and on the third day I went into labor.  Ok, the baby was due anyway but this was my introduction into Chinese herbal medicine.  It’s been over 20 years since I decocted my first Chinese herbs.


Herbal decoction methods have been used throughout the ages. Before the industrialized revolution built factories to produce herbal medicine into capsules and pills, people boiled herbs. Today we still have many traditional cultures which use herbal medicine the “old fashioned way”.   Boiling a pot of roots, bark and berries and then drinking the water left behind is the foundation of Traditional Chinese Medicine. 

 

The question remains, is drinking a pot of herbal medicine a better, faster, more effective way to use herbs than swallowing a handful of pills? 

 

The answer is without a doubt YES!   The average size of pills and capsules are very small and can hold only about 1/2 a gram of herbal extract. 

Even if the herbal extract is at a very high concentration, 1/2 gram per capsule (about 1/4 tsp)  is a very small amount to get a desired effect from the herbal medicinal.  Most encapsulated bottled products recommend taking 2-3 capsules once or twice daily.  This equals an extremely small dose of raw herbs or decocted herbs.  Practically speaking pills and capsules are fairly easy to take, that is, until you have to take 20 or so pills a day.  

 

Drinking your herbal medicine not only allows the chemical components from the plants to be more readily bio-available, it is also the way your body understands receiving nourishment.   Research has been conducted on the dissolution of herbs in our body.  Dissolving herb granules in hot water or decocting them allows the solvents to release their effect immediately thereby working more quickly in the body.  Whereas, herbal medicine combined with fillers such as dextrin in capsules or pills, (also used to prevent clumping), need very hot,  near boiling water to dissolve. This high dissolution temperature of dextrin inhibits the fast absorption.

 

With so much information available on the use of decoctions, it’s hard for me to choose a pill or capsule over granule medicinal herbal extracts.   Besides, who would want all those fillers in capsules and tablets anyway?

Touring in Taiwan? Stop to See A Chinese Herbal Medicine Factory

A New Chinese Herb Factory in Taiwan, Taiwan is gaining popularity with tourists. 

Greater Tainan Mayor William Lai, second left, listens on Sunday to a man telling the story of traditional Chinese medicine at a tourist factory that opened in the Guantian District’s Industrial Park.

Photo: Yang Chin-cheng, Taipei Times

Herbal medicine is for everyday life, not just for sickness, staff at a Chinese medicinal herb tourist factory said as it opened in Greater Tainan’s Guantian District Industrial Area on Sunday.

Tainan Mayor William Lai said Taiwanese are health-conscious and understand that taking medicinal herbs, even when healthy, is good for the body as a whole.

The Tian Yi factory combines relaxation, food and Chinese medicinal knowledge, specializing in knowledge of how Chinese medicine can be incorporated into everyday life.

General manager Chen Hui-chua said the new Chinese medicinal tourist factory is the third among 14 tourist factories in the municipality.

The factory has its roots in a renowned and venerated Chinese medicinal brand that was better at making medicine than carrying out marketing, Chen said, adding that it was the city’s hope that the factory could help bridge tradition-steeped Chinese medicine with a health-conscious modern world.

“Even if the tastes of Chinese medicine do not agree with everyone, we hope that healthy drinks and teas will eventually be embraced by the younger generation,” Chen said.

The factory is divided into four sections, including a gallery illustrating the development of Chinese medicine over the past 5,000 years, as well as the personal stories of traditional Chinese medicine doctors of old, Chen added.

“There is also an display that explains the process of making Chinese medicine and common concepts of when to use them” Chen said.

“There is a section where tourists can experience what it felt like to be a traditional medicine doctor in the old days,” she said.

“There is also a dining area, where people can try meals that incorporate Chinese medicines,” Chen added.

The meals are a joint effort by the factory and the National Kaohsiung University of Hospitality and Tourism, she said.