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An Introduction to Chinese Medicine

The practice of Chinese medicine envelopes several traditional disciplines the best known of which may be acupuncture. Although there are many aspects to Chinese medicine, it has at its core the concept of energy. Keeping the body's mental and physical energy in balance are key to the art of Chinese medicine.

Chinese medicine operates from a holistic perspective. It emphasizes caring for the mind and body as a whole rather than as disconnected parts. Exercise, diet, massage, the use of herbs and acupuncture are all part of the Chinese medicine approach to wellness. The ideas of wellness and preventative treatment are hallmarks of Chinese medicine as it has been observed for thousands of years.

Qi (chee) is the field of energy which runs through the body. Acupuncture, acupressure and the old but newly popular technique of cupping are all ways of balancing the body's energy. Massage and manipulation to direct the body's energy flow are addressed through the practice of Tuina. Qi Gong refers to the Chinese philosophy of exercising with the intent of harnessing personal energy. Mental and physical energy may also be put in alignment by eating the correct foods in proper amounts.

Chinese medicine does not require overhauling a person's entire lifestyle. Indeed, dramatic shifts in thinking, eating and exercising are not encouraged. Physical methods of harmonizing energy such as acupuncture are also to be entered into on a gradual basis. Instead, Chinese medicine provides an overall attitude toward stability of the whole person which provides a long term sense of well being and health.

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