The Acupuncture Clinic is well and truly into summer. For those of you in the Northern hemisphere, depending where you are, you may be experiencing exactly the opposite of what the weather is doing here in Sunny Hawkes Bay right now. The windows in the clinic are open and the flies are annoying the patients. The use of the heating moxibustion treatment has not stopped though. In fact it is common process to use moxibustion in the summer to treat the cold diseases that had penetrated deep into the body during the winter. An example of a “cold” disease is the accumulation of cold and damp into joints, commonly called rheumatoid arthritis in modern medicine.
Some of you may have noticed that your achy rheumatic knees have lessened somewhat in the heat of the summer.
Others may have noticed that now in summer, their achy joints are actually worse. Rheumatoid arthritis can have a damp cold or a damp heat component. The cold type arthritis can feel worse in winter, whereas the hot damp type arthritis feels worse in the summer. That is why there are different treatments for rheumatoid arthritis with acupuncture and Chinese medicine, unlike western medicine where it is one drug for everyone.
Have you ever noticed that you naturally crave or desire certain foods in different seasons? Think about the watermelon. It is ready to be picked at the peak of summer. And in fact Chinese medicine physicians have been prescribing watermelon for centuries for “heat” diseases of the summer such as sun stroke. It is recommended though, to have it at room temperature or naturally cooled down in a running stream as opposed to icy cold out of the fridge.
Watch out for catching colds in the summer time when there is a sudden cold snap blowing up from the south. If the cold gets suppressed with antibiotics for example, it can manifest again in the autumn as a more serious lung infection.
Whether you are in the northern hemisphere or southern hemisphere, enjoy the New Year and good health to you all for the future.