Pregnancy: Be in Peak Performance Condition

A dear friend in San Diego is getting close to birthing. The baby's breech right now and she was looking for options to turn the position. I told her about a TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine) procedure where we do something called moxa on an acupuncture point on the pinky toe to turn the baby. It must be down by week 37 or the baby gets too large to turn. She went to an acupuncturist in her area to have the procedure done, and got a couple sticks of moxa so she could continue doing it at home.I got to thinking how she only has a few weeks left of freedom and rest. So I advised her to take advantage of that, go out at the spur of…

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Acupuncture Reduces Treatment Side-Effects in Breast Cancer Patients

Here's another study showing the benefits of acupuncture in supporting breast cancer patients in comparison to those on drug therapy. The chemo drugs typically cause hot flashes for women being treated for breast cancer. To address the hot flashes, the women are given another drug, Venlafaxine (Effexor) which also has side effects. So Dr. Eleanor Walker and her team decided to study acupuncture's effect in treating hot flashes for breast cancer patients.The study, published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, found that the acupuncture and drug group had similar results in reduction of symptoms (mainly hot flashes and depression are noted here) during treatment. But the post treatment follow-up is where it gets interesting. The drug patients symptoms returned within two weeks from when they stopped taking…

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Could Women Use Smaller Vaccine Doses?

The decision to vaccinate is a personal one. Do your own research and weigh the side effects and disease risks against the benefits of the vaccine. Keep in mind that those who are immuno-compromised, weak or frail are in a higher risk group than healthy young and middle aged adults. The authors of this NY Time's Op-Ed piece contend that clinical studies are showing that women produce as many antibodies to half the dose of flu vaccine that men do at the full dose, and that the rule holds up for other diseases such as measles, mumps, rubella, hepatitis A & B and herpes simplex. If women were given a lower dose they might suffer fewer side effects than they do at the higher dose. In the…

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Stanford Research Study Shows Acupuncture Reduces Hot Flashes

Here's a study published a few years ago by a Stanford researcher showing the benefits of acupuncture for hot flashes. The study followed patients for seven weeks of treatment. In Chinese Medicine we treat in courses: a clinical course of treatment being 10-12 visits or weeks of herbal medicine. I have found in clinic that the first course of treatment tends to be 10-15 visits. In that amount of time I can usually get mild or acute symptoms resolved, and more chronic symptoms reduced and under control. Inexplicably this study tracked patients for only 7 visits. I'm sure the results would have dramatically increased had the patients continued treatment for a full course, or longer.I have noticed that studies usually show a lower percentage effectiveness than what…

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Reducing Breast Cancer Risk: Excercise, Veg Diet & Limited Alcohol. New York Times Article

Here's a short piece from the NY Time's Science section about a study showing that living a healthy life style decreases breast cancer risk. This study emphasizes maintaining a normal body weight.Obesity dramatically increases a woman's risk of developing breast cancer by 50-100%, the risk increasing "the older the woman gets and the longer she remains obese." (1) The reason being is that the abdominal fat cells convert steroid (fat soluble) hormones to estrogen. In the breasts, the additional estrogen created binds to the breast cells, promoting "cell division and potentially tumor growth." (2) Cancer cells are abnormal cell growth: the additional cell division cause the tumor growth. Adipose tissue (fat) contains an enzyme, aromatase, that converts steroid hormones into estrogen. After menopause, the ovaries and pituitary…

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