Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Traditional Chinese Medicine and Healing Powers

Traditional Chinese Medicine and Healing Powers What is Traditional Chinese Medicine? Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) is a system of healing from China. While TCM is regarded as an alternative medicine system in the West, in China and other Asian countries, it is practiced widely by the locals. Medical practitioners are trained in the diagnostic and healing techniques with centuries of tradition and philosophy. Like naturopathy, TCM is holistic. It considers all aspects of the person including physical, nutritional, emotional, mental and spiritual for diagnosis. TCM is based on the balance of opposing elements (the yin and yang) in the body, as well as their harmony with the environment around it. The two main forces of yin and yang combine to form the "qi" (pronounced as "chee") or universal life force. When qi is in harmony, health is not only enhanced but also the capacity for fufilment, happiness and well being. Disease and illness arise from imbalances of yin and yang that block the proper flow of qi. Therapies to treat disease are aimed at restoring the balance and unblocking the flow to restore health. TCM is primarily non-invasive. TCM treatments include the use of Chinese herbs, acupuncture, meditation, Chinese massage therapy, mental and physical disciplines such as Tai Chi and Qigong and nutritional therapy. Practitioners will attempt to realign the body's balance using a combination of treatments before suggesting surgery by a Western Doctor. Most research into the effectiveness of TCM has been conducted on acupuncture. Although it has been difficult to conclusively prove the benefits of acupuncture, the results of large-scale studies are sufficiently convincing enough for FDA to consider the tradition "promising" and worthy of further study. In addition, it has been proven that many herbs used in Chinese medicine have therapeutic benefits. For instance, ginseng and Echinacea are both powerful herbs with strong medicinal actions. More recently, there has been some acknowledgment that Chinese massage therapies do help to manipulate muscles, nerves and tendons. There are many criticisms of TCM as a form of healing. Most TCM methodologies have no research basis and remain largely unproven. Also, some of the TCM beliefs have been mixed with Eastern mythology. For instance, tiger penis is used as an energy supplement as tigers are considered energetic animals. Whether it really helps to boost energy levels remain unsubstantiated by proper research. Most of the Chinese herbs are also not regulated. This makes it more important to consult with a reputable and reliable TCM practitioner. However, aside from the criticisms, there is much merit in the philosophy of TCM. healing. If more research can be done into TCM, then the mythology can be separated from the facts and perhaps, more people will embrace TCM more readily as a form of healing. Chinese Herbal Medicine Of our earliest ancestors, the Chinese have made it a point to incorporate nature’s garden into the world of medicine more than any other culture, still adhering to the mindset of the importance of Chinese herbal remedies to this day. Although many cultures have traditionally used seeds and plant parts in their remedies, China has alleviated ailments using herbs since around 5,000 BC. Having amassed this knowledge for thousands of years, the Chinese have mastered the art of cultivating herbs for medicinal purposes and other cultures look to them for insight into how a diagnosis can be treated through the use of herbs. Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) is heavily relied on throughout the world by everyone from the common consumer to specialists in every field of medicine. The Chinese developed their system of medicine and herbal remedies to cater to the yin and yang principle, where the body should be in perfect balance and herbs deliver harmony to the person taking them. Instead of treating one symptom, as is commonly done in the Western world of modern medicine, Chinese herbal remedies seek to get the body back into a natural state of balance so that healing can occur and any imbalances are eliminated. In conjunction with herbs, the Chinese also incorporate acupuncture, massage, and a healthy diet into the concept of harmony for healing purposes. One Chinese Emperor is credited with the launch of Traditional Chinese Medicine. Emperor Shen Nong (2697 BC) began personally tasting and testing various plants and their parts to see how it would affect his body and could help others with ailments such as circulation improvements and urinary infections. Later on in history, Emperor Huang Ti developed what is now the world’s oldest medical textbook, called Nei Ching, which translates into Yellow Emperor’s Canon of Internal Medicine. Many doctors on a global scale still refer to this text today for insight on Chinese herbal medicine. Although Western medicine has had an influence over Chinese herbal medicine in the modern world, Traditional Chinese Medicine retains its strong influence as a powerful way to combine herbal treatment and technology. The Chinese strongly believe that your mind and body must be in sync to avoid illness, which is why they have mental health tied into herbal remedies. Western medicine separates the two into different categories, treating the mind separate from the body. However, Chinese herbal remedies are now being used to treat mental disorders, such as depression in the Western World. Citation: Disabled World News - Traditional chinese medicine or TCM is based on the balance of opposing elements the yin and yang in the body as well as their harmony with the environment around it:

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