My acupuncturist is trained in the diagnosis of ailments and the use of diet and herbal supplements to correct those. You see, TCM approaches our bodies with a different sort of mindset. How I was raised (and I'm sure most of you reading this were, too) was to go to the doctor when something was physically wrong or I didn't feel well. In our culture, we wait until we're usually quite sick before we get help. Then, we use medications to 'fix' the issue.
For example, even though I am still relatively young, I was beginning to present as pre-diabetic. My horrible diet was taxing my body. This past year as I decided to find an alternative path to weight-loss and health, I found I had to change my thinking. I had to stop looking for the pill, diet, program or phone app that would finally fix me. I found I had to listen to and trust my body. I had to literally learn to "feel" my own body. I know that sounds weird, but so many of us in our western 'supersize me' culture are really out of touch!
The first thing my acupuncturist, Dr. Cho, had me do was to cut sugar and white refined flour out of my diet. It's hard, I know, I won't say it was easy, but I was finally unhappy enough with the way I felt, I was ready to do anything. I had lots of grace for myself and did not try to count calories, or portions. I just ate the way she told me to. This is the path she put me on:
- For the first three weeks, I ate no meat, only fruit, vegetables and rice.
- I took an herbal supplement that supported my metabolism. The herbs were listed in Chinese. (This is where I'm not sure what to tell you: I trust my practitioner. You can find your own TCM practitioner in your area, or go to a local health food store or Chinese food store and speak to someone there about what to take.)
- I took a fiber supplement three times each day to open up my digestive system.
- I drank a green drink every day made from a powder containing all sorts of nutrients from seaweed and other organic plants.
- After three weeks, I added lean chicken, eggs and fish back into my diet. Dr.Cho then switched my herbs to balance my spleen.
I no longer weigh myself at home. I went to the regular Western doctor for a check up and I had lost about 25 pounds since my previous visit 16 months before. I don't go to the doctor very much because I rarely get sick now. My focus is on keeping my body in balance, my soul and spirit nurtured and my relationships healthy and intact. I will write more about all of that next time.