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    Holistic Health Care | Acupuncture | Auricular Acupuncture | Community Acupuncture |
    | Diet and Nutrition


    Holistic Health Care


    Herban Health provides holistic health care for its clients who are primarily low income and uninsured. Holistic health care doesn’t just focus on disease but considers the connections of mind, body and spirit. As Illich suggested in Medical Nemesis: the Expropriation of Health (1982), those with the least resources are most in need of support for self-help. Herban Health is predicated on this model.

    Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) is a complete system of care based on these connections, and is unique in its low cost, focus on self-help, and view of the whole person within his/her environment.  Each patient receives a diagnosis based on TCM principles and his/her treatment includes a discussion about how the person’s health is tied to the choices that he/she has. Once a diagnosis is given one or more of the following modalities are prescribed.

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    Acupuncture refers primarily to the pain-free insertion of sterile, disposable, hair-thin needles through the skin at specific points.  The needles are then manipulated manually or by electrical stimulation to alleviate pain and treat diseases.  Stimulation of these areas by moxibustion, pressure, heat, and lasers may also be used. The fundamental theory behind acupuncture stipulates that energy travels in invisible channels through the body, different but similar to electrical currents discussed in Western medicine. Theoretically, any disease, physical or mental, that involves the functional and vital processes in the body can be helped by acupuncture, depending on the diagnosis.  The majority of patients improve over a period of time until the stage is reached where the improvement lasts.

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    Auricular Acupuncture

    Auricular acupuncture is one of the more widely used microsystems within eastern medicine. Microsystems use one aspect of the body – e.g., the ears, hands or feet - to treat conditions present anywhere in the body.  In auricular acupuncture needles are inserted into certain points on the ear to treat disease, and may be used alone or in conjunction with other TCM treatments. Auricular acupuncture has been widely applied in treating substance abuse, particularly for addictions to drugs and alcohol. Its use in a group setting for purposes of providing low cost, effective health care was pioneered in the United States by Lincoln Clinic, Bronx, New York, in 1972 using the NADA (National Acupuncture Detoxification Association) protocol. Treatments last from 30-60 minutes with people receiving treatment while sitting in a chair fully clothed.  The NADA protocol has also been found to be effective not only in treating addictions but also in treating stress, anger, frustration, depression, fatigue and other emotional and physical pain.



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    Community Acupuncture

    Full body acupuncture is usually performed with the patient lying on a treatment table in a private room setting, which is effective but costly, limiting access.  A modified group form, called community acupuncture, emphasizes making acupuncture affordable by providing full body treatment to 4-6 patients in recliners in one large room.  This enables patients to afford to come in for more frequent treatments over a longer duration, thus enabling the frequency of treatments necessary for improving health.



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    The prescription of Chinese herbal formulas is also based on TCM diagnosis, and often involves combining 2 or more different herbs to enhance the ultimate efficacy and safety of these classical herbal formulas. The formulas that we use are all over-the-counter classic patent formulas, in pill form, manufactured by companies who have established procedures to screen for contaminants, toxic substances and heavy metals.  Herbal formulas will only be prescribed when the practitioner has had sufficient opportunity to diagnose the patient, to identity all western medications taken by the patient, and to (whenever possible) discuss the situation with the patient’s western practitioner.


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    Diet and Nutrition

    Nutrition is a major part of treatment with Chinese medicine as food is considered medicine.  Specific foods are recommended or eliminated for certain diseases and conditions.  Recipes for low cost, easily prepared and healthy meals are also important for improving health when time and financial resources are limited.


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