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“I believe people are finally taking responsibly for their health more, and we need to do just that.” Dr. Rusty

Do you recall how last year, at this same time, it was cooler. As a matter of fact, just last week we had some of the hottest days in three years!

Labor Day is here and in lots of states that says summer is over, but it’s not over here, for sure! But, there’s also something interesting that happens around this time of year. Patients come in with different symptoms. We’re still treating nausea, a tight band feeling around heads and a general hot yucky feeling (late summer Spleen & Stomach Meridians).  In addition, this past week, people have started showing up with sinus, constipation and skin rashes. Usually this happens closer to the actual date of autumn.

The Lung meridian takes care of the lungs and skin. The Large Intestine Meridian works with the sinuses, throat and the bowels. They are affected by dry weather. The emotions for these the Lung and Large Intestine meridians are grief, sorrow and “letting go.” Are you feeling these emotions right now?

We have noticed just in the first two weeks after school starts, children come down with “colds.”  Adults start showing signs a couple of weeks after that.  Our “regular” patients – the ones that come in monthly or every three months — are not getting sick. We’ve seen just a few mild sore throats and sinus congestion.

I believe people are finally taking responsibly for their health more, and we need to do just that.  The time to depend on a “prescription” to fix us is over! Remember, Acupuncture can help eliminate these troublesome symptoms even in a few hours. We have many homeopathic formulas as well as herbal for these symptoms and to help prevent them from coming on.  And, we can do homeopathic injections (the needle is really tiny and short) to help prevent or treat.

If you think you are catching something try the following techniques and foods to eliminate the symptoms:

  • Rubbing around your nose, around your collar bone, from your thumb up your arm to your collar bone and by the nail bed (outside) on your second finger up your arm across your neck, on your face to your nose will help stimulate these 2 Meridians.
  • Foods to eat in this season for the Lung are carrots, cinnamon, garlic, ginger, grapes, green onions, honey, olives, peanuts, pears, peppermints, persimmons, radish, tangerines, walnuts, water chestnuts.
  • To help the Large Intestine Meridian, eat tofu, black pepper, Chinese cabbage, corn, cucumbers, eggplants, figs, honey, lettuce, nutmeg, persimmons, salt, and spinach.
  • For asthma problems, add pumpkin to your diet.
  • Constipation? Add bananas, Chinese cabbage, pears, spinach and sweet potatoes.
  • For coughs, use honey and lemon mixed together, peaches, mangoes, strawberries, tangerines, carrots and asparagus also help.
  • Sore throats feel better with pineapple juice.

For more information about these meridians and much more about treating things you’re experiencing, read my books, “Sensitivities,” and “Keys to a Vibrantly Healthy, Long Life” are available at Amazon.com or in our clinic.


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Stomach/Spleen Meridians affect, among other things, sinus congestion, and headaches on the forehead (a heavy feeling or a tight band around the head.

Stomach/Spleen Meridians affect, among other things, sinus congestion, and headaches on the forehead (a heavy feeling or a tight band around the head.

Year after year, a few weeks before the season changes, we see symptoms coming in. In Oriental Medicine, there is a season called “late summer.” And, it will be here soon!

The interesting part of this story is late summer brings on symptoms we all call “food poisoning,” or a “summer cold.” In Oriental Medicine, we have seasons that correspond with Meridians. The Spleen and Stomach Meridians will be focused in August. Oriental Medicine has in its corner thousands of years of watching people and their symptoms, matching them with the seasons…and all these years later, the explanations still apply. In my practice, I find these tried and true “seasons” help make my focus on patients and their symptoms a bit easier. After 15 years in practice, I still see it…the same symptoms and problems every season – 2 weeks before the changes occur.

Stomach/Spleen Meridians work with digesting food, building blood, and transforming and transporting nutrients. It deals with dampness (heavy feeling), sinus congestions, headaches on the forehead (a heavy feeling or a tight band around the head), muscle cramps and aches, edema, diarrhea, nausea and phlegm. These are the problems my patients are coming in for help with regularly right now.

The flavor of the season: SWEET

The flavor of this season is sweet. People LOVE ice cream this time of year. Ice cream is damp in nature. Also causes our blood sugar to drop during the night. If you eat it – do so after dinner – and add nuts. Or eat a protein with it (eggs, cheese, and meat).

Eating tips for your best health in late summer

The best foods for the next two months are barley, celery, clams, adzuki beans, garlic, green onions, green tea, horseradish, lettuce, mushrooms, parsley, pumpkin and radishes. Incorporate them in your daily diet. Horseradish is great for sinus congestion.


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The location of the acupuncture points for these meridians is on the hands and arms; as always these meridians connect with the others and tune- ups are important.

June has arrived and that means summer is in full swing in Florida.

In Oriental Medicine, summer governs the Heart and Small Intestine Meridians with the Triple Warmer and Pericardium Meridians.  Four meridians for summer, while the other seasons govern only two meridians, this makes the summer tune-up even more important.

  • The Heart Meridian works with the blood vessels and moves the blood through them.  An imbalance can lead to the experiences including: insomnia, palpations, nightmares, skipping pulse, pain in the tongue, feverish feelings and restlessness.
  • The Small Intestine Meridian works with elimination.
  • The Pericardium Meridian, the heart protector, along with the Triple Warmer Meridian, referred to as San Jiao, are not organs, they are meridians. This can sometimes get lost in translation and confusing, but these meridians are real in their effects on health and wellness.  The Pericardium protects the heart as it works with the emotions and most importantly it can help with hot flashes or the feeling of heat in the upper body.
  • The Triple Warmer (San Jiao) works with coordinating all the water functions in the body.  The descriptions are dated from the third century.  This meridian works with the three burners including: the lung area, on top; the stomach, which helps to churn food and the lower burner, working with elimination.  (Can you see why they called it a swamp area?)

The time of day for the Heart Meridian is 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., followed by the Small Intestine from 1pm to 3 p.m. The Heart Protector Meridian work begins at 7 p.m. and runs to 9 p.m., with the Triple Warmer starting at 9pm ending at 11 p.m.

The location of the acupuncture points for these meridians is on the hands and arms; as always these meridians connect with the others and tune- ups are important.

Foods that support heath in this season are: asparagus, celery, chocolate, coffee, lettuce, vinegar, wine, ginseng, pumpkin and sunflower seeds.  These foods are bitter in nature and that is the flavor for the Heart and Small Intestine Meridian.

The name of my favorite acupuncture point is P-7, located on the inside of the wrist.  I use this Big Picture treatment for patients who are struggling with clarification or decision making.  This point is extremely helpful for these purposes – just ask me for it.  In Chinese Medicine this is called Daling, it clarifies the heart and calms the spirit.  P7 works with harmonizing the Stomach Meridian.

Point H7 works with eliminating insomnia and nightmares, palpations and loss of voice as well as many other problems. This point is located on the inside of the wrist near the little finger and is called Spirits Door or in Chinese, Shenmen.

TW5 or Outer Gate, Waiguan in Chinese, works with protecting the Wei Qi or defensive Qi. I use this if I feel a wind cold is affecting you. This one is located in the back of your arm just a few fingers up from your wrist.

A common point on the face near the ear is SI 19, Palace of Hearing or Tinggong.  Treatment in this area is used for earaches, tinnitus and hearing problems.

You can rub these points if you show any of the symptoms –it is your body – rub it. These meridians work with so many problems.  I include one of these meridians and acupuncture points in each treatment.


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Two years ago, for months, I was plagued with a digestive/elimination problem that my gastroenterologists could not treat. He told me write to down everything I ate, figure out what foods caused the problem, and simply NOT eat them anymore. Meanwhile, I’d heard about Debra Gaffney from several individuals including a chiropractor and a neighbor. My neighbor claimed Debra Gaffney had cured her of her asthma. “HUH? How could that be? How could acupuncture cure anyone of asthma?” was my reaction.


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