Grow Wellness Acupuncture | Acupuncture, Herbal medicine and Doula services

Warm Winter Greens

Green Soup

In Chinese Medicine, it is thought that one of the best ways to stay healthy during the winter months is to eat warm, cooked foods and avoid anything too cold or raw. As a salad lover during the summer months, sometimes I find it difficult to get enough leafy greens and vegetables in when I have to cook them – which can take so much more time and preparation than whipping together a quick salad. This year I’ve been experimenting with a time-saving, make-ahead soup recipe that helps get all the daily veggies in! Read on to learn my Warm Winter Greens Soup recipe. Read More »

Acupuncture For Night Sweats

NightSweats

Featured this month on Parachute Blog is an article by Diana Kelly on the “Causes of Night Sweats” –  including insights and tips from Erin Borbet on how Chinese Medicine can help to naturally alleviate this uncomfortable symptom. Together with other experts in the field, she illuminates some possible causes and ways you can help to alleviate night sweats for good.  Check out the full article here.

Homemade Beet Kvass

Beet Kvass is a favorite beverage in our home. My husband, myself and our daughter all enjoy a small glass with breakfast most mornings. Beet what, you ask? Find out what it is, how to make it and why you might just want to make this tonic a part of your morning (or detox) ritual after the jump.

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Pumpkin-Ginger Muffins (Grain and Gluten Free)

Pumpkin Muffin

I LOVE pumpkin! And fall is the perfect time of year for enjoying pumpkin in so many different ways. I like to roast several pie-pumpkins from the farmers market and freeze them in ice-cube trays so I always have fresh roasted pumpkin on hand. This recipe for Pumpkin Spice Muffins is my all time favorite. Adapted from a recipe on Elana’s Pantry, I made a few tweaks of my own that my family loves. These muffins are grain free, gluten free and nut free. Packed with protein-rich whole eggs, fiber rich coconut flour, and a hint of natural sweetness from honey make them a perfect and filling snack. They are moist, delicious and bursting with spice flavor. I hope you like them!

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Acupuncture for Morning Sickness: Why It Works

Acupuncture can be used to treat many discomforts that may arise during a woman’s pregnancy – offering safe and natural relief without adverse side effects for the pregnant mother or growing baby. This is great news! What many OBs and mother’s have come to accept as par-for-the-course-uncomfortable-symptoms-of-pregnancy, can actually be alleviated. Morning sickness – or, pregnancy induced nausea and vomiting – is a well known one. Find out why acupuncture works and what the research says after the jump.

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3 Roles Acupuncture Could Play in Your Fertility

doulaSidebar

Today’s post is over at the Nine Naturals blog. Nine Naturals is company that offers specially crafted hair and body products for moms and moms-to-be that are free from chemicals, solvents and synthetic fragrances – without compromising on quality. Their products are some of the purest on the market, and pay special consideration to ingredients that don’t disrupt hormone balance (many commercial body and hair products for women on the market are known “endocrine disruptors” or cause hormone imbalance – not helpful at all during the reproductive years).  Click on over to their site to read my full post on the three ways acupuncture can help your fertility – by regulating the menstrual cycle, increasing female fertility and improving IVF and ART outcomes.

9 Ways to Grow Flora in Your Gut, Part 4 of 4 in our Gut Health Series

beets and slaw

9 Ways to Eat Your Probiotics

In our previous posts, we’ve discussed the Importance of Gut Flora, how our Gut Flora Has Been Passed Down for Generations and How it can get Out Of Balance. In this post, we’ll uncover 9 ways you can increase your probiotic flora through food. We’ll also throw in a few suggestions for intestinal lining help too.

Foods naturally rich in probiotics – aka the “good bacteria” – include:

  1. Yogurt – whole milk is best and from local dairy farms if possible (tastes better too!)
  2. Kefir – another form of fermented milk, providing different different strains than yogurt (also think of sour cream or cultured cheeses as other sources of cultured dairy)
  3. Miso – or other fermented soybean products like Natto
  4. Lacto-fermented foods (see our post on lacto-fermented vegetables)
  5. Lacto-fermented Tonics (the juice leftover from fermented vegetables)
  6. Water Kefir – similar to milk kefir, but dairy free
  7. Kvass, from Beets or Grain
  8. Kombucha, read our post on homemade kombucha here
  9. “Soured” Grains – like sourdough and soaked/sprouted porridges

Our Favorite Supplements

  1. BioKult – a multi-strain, high-quality probiotic I recommend (they also make an infant formula for children under 10)
  2. Great Lakes Unflavored Gelatin – a high quality gelatin product sourced from pastured cows. You can use this product to make gelatinous soups or fruit jellos (even marshmallows!) or just dissolve in hot tea as a tonic. They also make a hydrosolated version which can be combined with any temperature liquid – the perfect protein powder to add to smoothies. Not only will it heal the gut, but it is incredibly important for hair, skin and nail health.

Try eating the above live foods on a daily basis or with each meal. Before starting a regimen of probiotic supplements, it is best to consult with a practitioner, to decide which supplements or foods are best for you. In our practice, we use probiotics regularly and view them as complementary to herbal medicine and acupuncture treatments. We may have already discussed if probiotics are right for you, but if not, or you’re curious, please just ask at your next appointment.

What are your favorite probiotic rich foods? Have you noticed a difference in your health once you began including these foods and/or taking supplements?

How Our System Gets Compromised – Part 3 of 4 In our Gut Health Series

Rebuilding the Gut – How and Why it Can Get Compromised

Some individuals have a predisposition or a history of digestive disorders, which may be genetic or have been induced by one of the following factors. Prolonged use of antibiotics (at any time in your life), is a major factor in gut dysbiosis and flora imbalance. The main concern with antibiotics is that they function to eliminate all bacteria, and since they work so effectively, both the “good” and the “bad” flora can be temporarily eliminated. While certain antibiotic courses are often prescribed for good reason and may be necessary, understanding the importance of our own bacterial health allows us to be pro-active about probiotic use as well. Highly stressful lifestyles (stress wreaks havoc on the whole body, especially our digestion), or improper diet can lead to long-term stress and degradation of the intestinal system.

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Generations of Gut Flora: Our Inheritance – Part 2 of 4 in our Gut Health Series

Baby C

Life Beginnings – The Generational Dance of Gut Flora

We can’t create life from nothing. Just like all other living things, beneficial bacteria need to be inoculated, fed and cultivated. If you’ve ever made your own yogurt, for example, you know that to perpetuate the recipe you use a little bit of the yogurt from the previous batch to help “fertilize” the next one (or use a “starter culture” if it’s your first batch). We can inoculate our own digestive flora through eating probiotic foods or taking supplements, but our initial foundation for probiotic growth was at birth, and has been passed down for generations. Yes, generations. Your great-grandmother’s gut flora played a role in the formation of yours. Learn about this fascinating process and how to lay a healthy foundation for future generations after the jump.

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Sun Tea – A Midwestern Recipe

Sun Tea Photo

In the Midwest, the start of summer can be signified with sun tea jars on the deck. It’s as easy as placing your tea jar in a sunny corner of your apartment or windowsill in the morning, and having tea by the afternoon. The rays from the sunshine warm and infuse the brew. It’s simple, refreshing, and a healthy option for any hot summer day.

You’ll need a clear glass jar with a lid (glass is best, plastic may leech unwanted toxins into your tea), filtered water (room temp), and any combination of the following teas:

  •  Fresh tea leaves, lightly rinsed (select leaves high in essential oils because they’ll infuse the best – such as peppermint, spearmint, and lemon balm)
  • Dried herbs, leaves or roots – choose your favorite and also feel free to mix flavors.  Current seasonal choices such as nettles, dandelion root or burdock are particularly beneficial for allergies and detox this time of year
  • Any Packaged Tea Bag or Blend (Traditional Medicinals offers high quality choices)

 

Place the tea leaves or tea bags in a jar and fill with filtered water, cap, and set in the sun anywhere from 2-6 hours, depending on how strong you like your tea. Once the tea is brewed, remove and discard the tea and enjoy. You may want to add honey, or for a tart version, I like fresh squeezed lemon. I also leave the jar on the counter and drink at room temperature. If you prefer, store in the fridge and keep cool, you’ll have iced tea without having to add ice.