Five Element Acupuncture
What is Traditional Acupuncture?
Acupuncture originated in the East nearly two thousand years ago and has been developed, adapted and refined over the centuries to make it highly relevant today in combatting the effects and stressors of modern life.
Traditional acupuncturists believe that:
- The body’s vital energy or Qi (pronounced chee) flows through channels in the body to energise, nourish and enervate it,
- When our Qi flows freely, there is neither pain nor illness, only health,
- Emotional and physical stress, poor nutrition, infection or injury may compromise this natural flow in our bodies, causing ill-health.
Traditional acupuncturists insert ultra-fine, sterile needles into specific acupuncture points to help restore this free-flow of energy or Qi, so that equilibrium can be restored and the body regains its health.
What is Five Element Acupuncture?
Five Element acupuncture is a form of Traditional Acupuncture that looks at the elements in nature and focuses on how this natural system is replicated within each one of us.
Ancient Chinese wisdom speaks of every individual being a unique combination of five elements:
One of these will be our predominant element. When nature receives the right amount of warmth and cold, light and dark, food and water there is abundance, and a continued cycle of health and balance is sustained.
Each element and season works in harmony to generate, sustain and nourish the next.
However, when one season is deficient there will be a knock-on effect to the other seasons.
For example, a deficient summer will lead to a poor autumn harvest. An overly warm spring will lead to leggy, weak plant growth. A treacherous winter may stunt the growth of those plants that survive it!
It is thought to be the same within each of us: when one element or energetic network is deficient or stressed the consequences can be varied and far-reaching, and illness can follow.
As an example, this could equally reveal itself as a physical complaint such as:
- Skin conditions
- Muscular pain
Alternatively, it might manifest mentally as:
…or spiritually as
Five Element acupuncture seeks to balance all five elements , so that the natural flow of energy in the body can resume, and health and vitality can be restored on all levels.
To treat disease that has already developed is comparable to the behaviour of those persons who begin to dig a well after they have become thirsty, and of those who begin to cast weapons after they have already engaged in battle. Would these actions not be too late?
Did you know that the first emperor of China, Qin Shi Huang (c200 BC) credited for the Great Wall and Terracotta Warriors, established a system whereby physicians were only paid if they kept patrons healthy? This remained in effect for centuries. It is through this legacy that acupuncture finds itself also suited to maintaining good health, not just treating disease.
Five Element acupuncture considers seasonal treatments to be very important in preparing the body for the environmental changes we’re exposed to. For example, the moment the weather turns chilly, many of us come down with:
- Colds, bronchitis or flu
- the Norovirus (or winter vomiting bug).
- Seasonal Affective Disorder (1),
…affects people more as the length of day shortens, and high blood pressure (3) can be a particular problem from late autumn to winter.
Affecting more people in spring is
- Gout (2).
- Hay fever
…affects sufferers during the months that the pollens spores they’re allergic to are released, typically spring and summer.
By timing treatments in the run-up to seasonal changes, Five Element acupuncture serves as a wonderful preventative healthcare system, strengthening the body’s immunity and functioning at times when it is most needed.
(1) Seasonal Affective Disorder Association http://www.sada.org.uk/
(2) Acute Gouty Arthritis is Seasonal (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9489831)
(3) Seasonal Variation in Stroke (http://stroke.ahajournals.org/content/34/5/1144.full.pdf)
Additional Links on Conditions and Health issues
Traditional acupuncture can safely treat a wide range of health conditions and there is a growing body of evidence-based clinical research to support this.
To find out whether acupuncture can help you, either call me on 075909 88181, book a free 15-minute consultation or feel free to browse some of the following links.
- The British Acupuncture Council (BAcC) lists conditions for which research has shown acupuncture to help. These can be accessed here: http://www.acupuncture.org.uk/research-fact-sheets.html
- The World Health Organisation (WHO) provides a detailed list of diseases and disorders that can be treated by acupuncture. These can be found at the following site: http://apps.who.int/medicinedocs/en/d/Js4926e/5.html#Js4926e.5
- A summary table of controlled clinical trials conducted for each condition can be found here: http://apps.who.int/medicinedocs/en/d/Js4926e/6.html