Archive for August, 2013

August 29, 2013

Meridians Are Proven Physical Pathways

I have been in so many car accidents (and no I wasn’t the one driving) I probably wouldn’t be walking if it wasn’t for yoga, shiatsu massage and acupuncture.
If you have read my blog on comparing natural health therapies you know that Shiatsu is a part of Traditional Chinese Medicine
The body has several energy systems mapped by ancient sages that are recognized in cultures from around the world.

Shiatsu is an ancient massage therapy that has a lot of empirical and documented evidence. Massage therapies have been proven to give benefits to many ailments. The lymphatic system in our body can only be moved by exercise, stretching or massage, so massage is important for people that don’t get exercise for whatever reason.

Shiatsu is acupressure, which uses the hands instead of the needles of acupuncture to follow the same meridian energy pathways.

The meridian system is like an “energy bloodstream” and the pressure points or “hot spots” are tiny reservoirs of electromagnetic energy. Science states that everything is made up of energy including us.

The body is electromagnetic in nature. The heart system runs on an electric current system. The body is magnetic, just like the magnetic properties shown in animals to help navigate, migrate and connect with the earth.
These electromagnetic points are stimulated with hands, fingers, elbows or needles to release and balance the flow of energy, while giving the immune system a boost. The immune reaction induces self-healing mechanisms, while relieving congestion and blocks that cause pain.

The meridians are really one long energy highway that moves through the twelve organ systems, and have now been detected by modern technology.

Recent CT scans show acupuncture points just like ancient maps show.
Radioactive isotopes have been injected in acupuncture points that show threadlike tubules 0.5-1.5 microns in diameter and matched ancient meridian maps.
These meridian transmissions of light have also shown up in infrared photography as “hot spots” that match the acupuncture points on the meridians.

There are two other meridians that zip up the centre line of the body, front and back. They open more out to the environment than the deeper running meridians that travel through muscle and organ groups. The organ/ meridian systems are paired in the Philosophy of the Chinese Five Elements to show the dynamic connected relationships in the body.

I find all massage techniques really beneficial along with the healing power of touch. While other massages are mostly skin contact, shiatsu is done through a sheet or in comfortable fitting clothes if you prefer not to have skin on skin contact.

To balance your meridians you can learn to trace your own meridians and hold, tap and massage pressure points or get an acupuncture or acupressure shiatsu massage.

I wish you much healing on your journey.

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    New CT scans reveal acupuncture points

    A writers Journal, H.D. Thoreau, Lawrence Stapleton Ed. New York, Dover 1960

    Vibrational Medicine, Richard Gerber rev.ed. Santa Fe, N. Mex. Bear 1996

    Subtle Energies, William Collinge, New York, Warner brothers, 1998

    Cross Currents: The promise of electro medicine, the perils of electro pollution, Robert O. Becker, Los Angeles: Tharcher 1990

    Energy medicine, Donna Eden

    Displaying of the infrared radiant track long meridians in the back of the human body, P. Wang X. Hu, B. Wu, Chen Tzu yen Chiu acupuncture research

    The Lives of a Cell: Notes of a Biology Watcher Lewis Thomas rev. ed. New york, penguin 1995

    Dynamical Energy Systems and Modern Physics in Alternative Therapies May 1997,3 (3), 46-56

    Alternative and complementary therapies, alternative therapies in clinical practice, alternative therapies in health and medicine, American journal of natural medicine, journal of alternative and complementary medicines.

    August 22, 2013

    Birch and Wintergreen Essential Oil Have Almost Identical Chemistry

    P. Wintergreen, may4 '03

    Birch and Wintergreen essential oil have 98% the same chemistry and smell almost identical, but wintergreen has a stronger aroma being more fruity, fresher, greener, and sweeter smelling. What makes them chemically the same is that they share a key ingredient called methyl salicylate, and they are the heaviest essential oils known to date. Each plant is 98% esters, which turn into methyl salicylate after acetylation from the fermented fresh leaves in warm water induces an enzymatic reaction to free the glycoside bound methyl salicylate.

    Wintergreen was traditionally used for its key ingredient methyl salicylate, which was used as food flavouring for confections, non-alcoholic drinks, chewing gum, and toothpaste. It has also been used by the perfume and pharmaceutical industry but is now replaced by a cheaper synthetic alternative. It has a long history of use by Native Americans as a pain reliever and it is used in the form of teas, baths, and ointments. Methyl salicylates are aspirin like compounds.

    Wintergreen grows in open woods, moist soil and underneath evergreens. The creeping stems send up erect branches 2-6 inches high. Alternate oval leathery leaves with serrate margins hold nodding white waxy flowers near the top of the stem. It blooms anywhere from May to September. Gaultheria fragrantissima from the Himalayas, Sri Lanka, Malaysia and East Asia is a different species but it is used in the same way and has the same chemistry too.

    COMMON NAME WINTERGREEN aka Checkerberry, Spiceberry, Teaberry


    Latin Name Gaultheria procumbens
    Family Ericaceae (Heath family)
    Country of Origin Native North America, China, India
    Volatility Top
    Extraction Steam distilled from fermented fresh leaves. Warm water enzymatic reaction frees glycoside bound methyl salicylate


    Colour Clear yellow
    Aroma Sweet, fat, green, fruity, wet


    Caution Contraindications Medium Strength: Do not use neat, undiluted.Dermocaustic, irritating to skin.

    Anticoagulant. Caution in conjunction with blood thinning drugs

    Do not use with nephritis, it is an irritant to kidneys.

    Do not use with compromised liver function.

    Do not use in pregnancy, lactation, with children or those who are allergic to aspirin.

    Primary Uses Pain: in general-Headache, aches and pains, arthritis, rheumatism, backache, sciatica, neuralgia, gout, fever, fibromyalgia, sprains, cramps, gas, bloating, bunions, corns, cysts, warts, calluses

    Caution: blood thinner

    Respiratory: coughs, spasms

    Properties Analgesic, aromatic, anti-inflammatory, febrifuge, astringent, stimulant, antibacterial, anti-rheumatic, carminative, haemostatic, cholagogue, diuretic, expectorant, counter irritant, antiseptic, antispasmodic, anti-coagulant



    Constituents Essential Oil Yield: .5%

    Esters 98%:

    after acetylating forms-

    methyl salicylate

    Betula spp. L. Birch bark has the same chemistry

    August 21, 2013

    Goldenrod is Falsely Blamed for Allergies

    Many people blame goldenrod for their allergies and dread seeing the tall golden plumage bloom in late summer, but goldenrod is not wind pollinated. It is hard to be allergic to goldenrod unless it is an allergy from touching the plant. Most people that blame goldenrod for their allergies are really allergic to ragweed. It blooms at the same time, but is smaller and has unnoticeable greenish flowers that are wind pollinated and often grows underneath or near goldenrod.


    Goldenrod is one of the best urinary tonics and is useful in those conditions that require a diuretic; like water retention, edema, congestion, inflammation and infection of the urinary tract, and gout rheumatic conditions. There are over 30 species in Ontario and other hybrids sub-species, but all of them are used in the same way.

    Goldenrod is native to Canada and the Solidago canadensis is the standard herb species used medicinally. Flowers were also used to make a yellow dye as well as herbal medicinal use as a tea or tincture, in which case the fresh is superior to the dried versions. There is goldenrod essential oil as well, used for the same purposes and helps reduce water retention and swelling externally.

    Common Name Goldenrod herb
    Latin Name Solidago canadensis spp.
    Family Asteraceae
    Parts Used Perennial- pick top 30% herb/ flower-late summer August
    Target Organs urinary, skin, lymph, immune, digestion
    Common Uses kidney bladder prostate tonic, infections, gout, oedema, external wounds, vascular tonic, UTI, kidney stones, inflammation infection of urinary tract, upper respiratory catarrh, gargle, laryngitis
    Properties urinary kidney prostate tonic, diuretic, astringent, antiseptic, antioxidant, vulnerary, Antifungal, styptic, lymphatic, anticatarrhal, diaphoretic
    Constituents Essential Oil, flavonoids, tannins, bitter, saponins
    Cautions mild remedy do not take during pregnancy. Use in formulations of up to 20% continuous use of no more than 2-3 months
    Dosage Tincture: 2-4ml Tea: 2-3 tsp 10-15 min fresh is preferred
    August 20, 2013

    Elecampane: A Beautiful Garden Flower with Medicinal Roots

    imageElecampane is a tall perennial that grows over four feet tall and has cheery golden yellow flowers like a sunflower, but elecampane has thinner floret petals with fringe tips.

    The Latin name is Inula helenium with the species name Helen stemming from Helen of Troy, the face that launched a thousand ships. Elecampane flowers are really that stunning and it did launch a thousand ships when it was brought to North America from Europe. It likes to grow in full sun in open moist meadows. The plant is best propagated by root division spacing four or feet apart, because they have huge course leaves.

    The genus name Inula refers to the inulin content found in almost half of the plant, which has been shown to help control blood sugar levels as a fibre, and regulates the immune system, which is good for autoimmune disorders. Inulin is a fibre, but should only be used in whole form, attached to the whole plant root it is soluble starch fibre. The whole plant is greater than the sum of its parts. Whenever plant parts are removed the outcome and quality are always compromised.

    The root is used in herbal medicine for coughs, colds and to get rid of parasites mainly, but it is a good restorative and tonic for chronic fatigue and infections.

    It benefits the hypothalamus, and is a thymus, spleen, endocrine tonic. It has digestive, respiratory and immune stimulating properties that make it good to combat infections, especially of the respiratory, digestive tract or in cases of parasitic, worm infections or food poisoning.

    The root was popular candied and to make ale or beer drinks, but even then the candied root tastes bitter and pungent. The bitter quality helps to stimulate the body through reflex reactions of the digestive and respiratory tracts.

    Common Name Elecampane root
    Latin Name Inula helenium
    Family Asteraceae
    Parts Used Perennial- harvest second year or older root in the Fall
    Target Organs immune, endocrine, digestion, respiratory, stomach, pancreas, spleen, uterus, nerves, liver, kidney/ bladder
    Common Uses endocrine restorative, spleen thymus tonic, immune stimulant, infections, coughs, colds, catarrh, bronchitis, UTI, digestive, parasites, worms, stomach upset, food poisoning, fatigue, allergies,diabetes,
    Properties digestive immune respiratory stimulant, antimicrobial, demulcent, expectorant, anti-tussive, stomachic, astringent, demulcent, bitter tonic, warming, drying, anti-allergenic
    Constituents 40% inulin,E.O: camphor, sesquiterpenes lactones; mucilage, triterpenes, bitter resin, alkaloid, helinin, sterols, calcium, magnesium
    Cautions mild remedy: combine with demulcents for dry coughs. Do not use during pregnancy it is a uterine stimulant.
    Dosage Tincture: best used in formulation


    August 19, 2013

    Eucalyptus Herb and Essential Oil DIY Decongestant

    Eucalyptus is an evergreen tree native to Australia but is now highly cultivated around the world.

    The largest varieties grow in Tasmania and Victoria and reach up to heights of 375 ft., making it one of the largest trees in the world and is the floral emblem of Tasmania.

    The young leaves are covered with a blue grey wax, which is the origin of the name blue gum, and are in opposite pairs on a square stem. The older leaves are blue-green, alternate and sword shaped. The bark peels off in large chunks after time.

    Eucalyptus oil is known as being one of the most powerful remedies to combat colds and clear the respiratory system. Use in a tincture or essential oil.
    Eucalyptus oil is used in products like Vick’s Vaporub TM.

    Make your own eucalyptus rub without the petroleum by-products and use carrier oil mixed with eucalyptus essential oil to rub on the body as a healthier, cheaper alternative when you need to decongest.

    Popular carrier oils to use are coconut oil, jojoba, hempseed or even use olive oil.

    Buy a sprig of eucalyptus at the florist to hang in the shower, or put a couple of drops of eucalyptus essential oil on a facecloth or in a small bowl or Chinese tea cup and place on the bottom of the tub or shower floor.

    When the water or heat hits the essential oils it will release the aroma and turn your shower into an aromatherapy steam room.
    Use Eucalyptus radiata with children.

    Latin Name Eucalyptus globulus
    Family Myrtaceae (Myrtle Family)
    Country of Origin Australia, Tasmania

    main distributor China

    Volatility Top note
    Extraction steam distilled from leaves of the tree
    Colour clear to slight yellow
    Aroma sharp, strong, camphor
    Caution Contraindications Do not use during pregnancy, with high blood pressure, epilepsy, severe asthma, or with chemotherapy treatments. Do not store with homeopathic remedies.
    Primary Uses Respiratory: bronchitis, coughs, colds, flu, sinusitis

    Muscular: pain, arthritis, aches

    Skin: wound healing, burns, aids in circulation and oxidation of cells,

    Insect repellent

    Properties analgesic, anthelmintic, antibacterial, anticatarrhal anti-inflammatory, antiprotozoal, antispasmodic, antiviral, antifungal, antiseptic, astringent, deodorant, diuretic, anti-infective, astringent, carminative, decongestant, diaphoretic, drying, stimulating expectorant, febrifuge, hypoglycaemic, immune stimulant, rubefacients,

    (Primary properties are underlined)

    Constituents Essential Oil Yield:

    1 -2.4%

    Sesquiterpene alcohols: <10% globulol, ledol, viridifloral,


    valeric aldehydes

    Oxides: 50-85% Eucalyptol aka 1, 8 cineole,

    Monoterpene alcohol: terpineole,

    Monoterpenes: 10-15% a+b pinene, phellandrene, cymene, camphene,

    Sesquiterpenes: aromadendrene,


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