Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Traditional Chinese Medicine Works

How does TCM work?

Disease (alterations in the normal flow of qi such that yin and yang are imbalanced) is thought to have three major causes: external or environmental factors, your internal emotions, and lifestyle factors such as diet. Through the use of its therapeutic modalities, TCM stimulates the body's own healing mechanisms. Practices used in TCM include:

* acupuncture and acupressure
* moxibustion (burning an herb near the skin)
* herbal medicine
* nutrition
* Chinese massage (called tui na)
* Exercise (such as tai chi and qi gong which combine movement with meditation)

In TCM, the body's internal organs are not thought of as individual structures, but as complex networks. According to TCM, there are five organ systems (kidney, heart, spleen, liver, and lung) through which qi flows via meridians. Despite their specific names, these five systems correspond to more than individual body parts. The kidney, for example, represents the entire urinary system along with the adrenal glands that sit a top of the kidneys. The heart represents both the heart and the brain.