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Archive for April, 2008

Acupuncture: Needles, Points, and Effects

Photo Credit: acupuncture., originally uploaded by Logan Garrett.

Acupuncture, once considered an exotic treatment, has been making its foray into mainstream health-care. What is acupuncture? It is a medical practice, originating in China, which employs small needles to influence the energy of an organism. The energy is referred to as Qi (Chi). It is described as the life-force or spirit. In Hinduism it is referred to as prana. It is the vitalizing force or energy imbued in an organism.

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Myofascial Pain Syndrome, Trigger points, and Treatment Options

Trigger points in taut bands of muscle

Myofascial pain syndrome can be considered, at least partially, a side effect of our modern lifestyles. It is caused by numerous factors: trauma, tension, inflammation, overuse, overload, poor posture, stress, repetitive strain, poor sleep, emotional stress, or other medical conditions, such as nerve entrapment, thyroid dysfunction, vitamin insufficiencies, metabolic dysfunctions. Myofascial pain is pain localized in the muscles and surrounding tissues. The constellation of symptoms includes achiness, fatigue, poor sleep, chronic muscle tightness, and limited range of motion. Sometimes, myofascial pain can produce numbness and sensory disturbances. If myofascial pain occurs in the neck, it can cause ringing in the ears, loss of balance, or chronic headaches.

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Maca: a Peruvian superfood

Photo Credit: Maca with leaves removed., originally uploaded by Cesar Moncloa.

I was recently offered a taste of a food i had not heard of. Being a curious vegetarian, I decided to try it. A new flavor can sometimes feel like you have discovered a new color. A specific molecular configuration can create havoc on your tongue. Maca is a root vegetable that originates in the Andean plateaus. It is a cruciferous vegetable, similar to broccoli, cabbage, mustard and collard greens. The flavor is especially earthy and nutty. Maca possesses many virtuous health-promoting attributes. For thousands of years, maca has been used as an aphrodisiac and fertility enhancer in Peruvian culture.

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