Acupuncture and the Menopause
Over the last 30 years of working in my London Acupuncture Clinic, I have been asked many times if Acupuncture can help during the menopause.
Well, it certainly can and we can look at the 5 element theory to see how it does this.
5 Element Theory
We can see that The Kidney energy supports The Liver Energy, which in turn supplies The Heart Energy.
The Kidneys (water element) act like the radiator system in a car, cooling The Liver ( Wood element). As the years go by the Kidney Energy declines according to Chinese Medical Theory. Part of the kidneys’ function is to control the cycles in the body, including the menstrual cycle. When The Kidney Energy is in decline it fails to cool The Liver. Liver is a wood element and, if it is not kept cool, we can have a situation called “ Liver Flares upwards” (which is the condition called the “Hot Flashes”)
How do we treat this declining Kidney Energy?
Yin And Yang Balance
According to Chinese Medical Knowledge the Yin organs are the deep vital organs and they are The Heart, Liver, Lungs, Spleen and Kidneys. The Yang organs are the Small intestine, Gall Bladder, Stomach and Urinary Bladder. Yin and Yang should be in balance as everything in the universe is a balance of Yin and Yang.
An obvious example of this is if Yin declines then relatively Yang will appear in ascendance. If Kidney Yin declines then Liver Yang will ascend = Menopausal Hot Flashes.
Why should inserting needle help?
The needles act to tune the system and the skill of the Acupuncturist is to ascertain, through diagnosis, which points are appropriate .Then comes the paradoxical part. Certain points are heated using a moxa stick.
Why add heat when one of the most distressing Symptoms are the hot flashes?
As I explained earlier, the hot flashes are as a result of the kidney energy declining, so when we choose certain points on the kidney meridian and on meridians connected to the kidneys and add heat to them, we can stimulate this declining energy.
Treating the Menopause holistically
We must consider some other factors that can help. Diet is one of them.
Diet and the Menopause.
It is vital to keep certain foods to a minimum. The main food that should be avoided is sugar. “Pure white and Deadly” to quote John Yudkin in 1972. Sugar acts like petrol on a fire – it blazes up!
Blood sugar is the vital factor. A common condition called Reactive Low Blood Sugar is often undiagnosed. When your GP checks your Blood Sugar levels it is the fasting levels he reads. To check for Reactive Low Blood Sugar after the Fasting level is recorded a glucose drink is taken ( a glucose challenge) and blood sugar readings are checked over a period of 5 hours. A positive result is where there is a sharp uptake in blood sugar levels, then a rapid drop below fasting levels and then a slow return to fasting levels, if at all. During the low phase is when your system is vulnerable you can often feel unwell. It helps to
avoid Sugar, Sweets, Cake and Alcohol.
Make sure that you maintain a good healthy diet that includes slow burning unrefined carbohydrates such as Brown Rice, Wholemeal Flour, Millet, Oats and Buckwheat.
It is also a good idea to take a supplement that includes minerals that are often low in the average convenience processed foods a particularly good product is “Nature’s Own” “Foodstate” one a day multi vitamin and mineral supplement. This will give you some backup should deficiency occur.
For further information about whether Acupuncture can help the Hot Flashes associated with the menopause follow this link
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