At Mullumbimby Comprehensive Health Centre we acknowledge the benefits of working together as practitioners to treat the body as a whole. Collaboration between various modalities within the practice is one of our many assets in our support of your individual preventative health needs.
With that in mind, we wanted to take a look at ways you can support your body system during the spring months with acupuncture and naturopathic nutrition.
Spring is the ideal time to consider a cleanse of the body through diet and nutrition. It is when the weather is warming up and things naturally like to renew themselves, in preventative health we like to work with the natural cycles of the body and the external environment to support the internal environment of our body system.
According to Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) spring is the time of the liver and gallbladder. The liver and gallbladder are seen as part of the Wood Element in the 5 Element Model, they are also known as meridians for growth and pushing us forward.
These meridians, when congested or blocked, are commonly involved in headaches, shoulder tension, sciatica, hip pain, a reluctance to take any risks, excessive anger, excessive planning and poor sleep. Medical acupuncture may incorporate these pressure points in a treatment to help alleviate signs and symptoms and promote health and wellbeing to the associated tissues and organs of the area.
A valuable question in Chinese medicine at this time according to its philosophy is “are my plans in alignment with my heart’s desire?”
Naturopathic nutrition insights
Cleansing is a term used for taking pressure off the body system with what we eat, drink and the activities and external environments that we are exposed to and place ourselves in. A cleanse involves reducing the volume of what we are consuming on all of these levels so that the body has the opportunity to use its energy to cleanse and heal as its main focus.
Eating cooling and cleansing foods that help to clear the liver and gallbladder during the spring months can also support these major organs and their natural cleansing process.
Although with diet there are no blanket statements, as everyone is unique and has individual requirements, some general rules of thumb to consider during spring time are to try increasing fresh seasonal salads, fresh or frozen fruit smoothies, fresh and seasonal fruit and vegetables as well as vegetable juices. These are good examples of cooling and cleansing foods that may support the liver and gallbladder clearance. Intermittent fasting or taking part in supported juice or food fasting programs for short periods of time can also be supportive, once you have been assessed by your practitioner for safety and to rule out possible contraindications (reasons why you shouldn’t not cleanse or fast).
Other effective ways of supporting a cleanse are by reducing foods and substances that put extra pressure on the liver and gallbladder, these include reducing or avoid the following for a period of time indicated by your practitioner;
- Excess caffeine intake
- Excess red meat intake
- Fried or fatty foods
- Sugar and processed refined foods (think anything out of a packet)
- Soft drinks, sweet sugary drinks
- Bakery type foods (think white flour breads, pastries, pies etc.)
Reducing toxins from your environment will also help to take pressure off the liver, this can be achieved by getting a water filtering system for your drinking and showering water, buying chemical free body products, turning wifi off at night time while you are sleeping and ensuring your mobile phone is switched off. Buying or growing organic and spray free food where possible is also supportive in reducing chemical loading from herbicide and pesticide residues used in some non-organic farming practises.
Being supported by a qualified practitioner before you start a cleanse and while you are doing one is really important as there can be contraindications which may make a cleanse not appropriate for you to do at a particular time, especially while pregnant or breastfeeding.
Our allied health team are all located under the one roof at Mullumbimby Comprehensive Health Centre and our referral process is simple and easy between practitioners. All of our practitioners have access to your health notes once you are in consultation with them to help ensure continuity of care.
Please contact our reception on (02) 66841511 to book a session with one of our practitioners if you would like more information.
Our naturopath and nutritionist Grace Hawkins is available Tuesdays and Wednesdays.