Acupuncture is an ancient practice that involves the strategic placement of very fine needles into points on the skin. These points have an effect on the internal organs and the flow of energy throughout the body along channels or meridians. This energy that flows through the organs and up and down the meridians is known as Qi (chee).
Acupuncture is used to balance the Qi in the various organs and glands. If an organ has an excess or a deficiency of energy it is unable to function optimally. Because all of the organs work together as a team, when one organ is out of balance it will then create imbalances in other organs, if left untreated.
The reason it is so important to keep the Qi balanced in the organs and flowing freely along the meridians is so that the body can function optimally as a whole. When the organs are balanced and functioning optimally the body can resist disease (physical, mental and emotional), and is more likely to recover from injuries quickly and completely.. When the organs are not functioning at their best, weaknesses are created which allow disease to "enter the body", leaving one more susceptible to illness and injury.
The organs work together to keep all the cells, tissues, systems, senses, emotions, and each other healthy.
The various organs share the workload as follows:
Heart and Pericardium work together to regulate the circulation of the blood, as well as mental activities.
San jiao regulates the endocrine hormone system and preserves homeostasis of the body. It is responsible for gathering mucus and other toxins containing them in the form of lumps, bumps, cysts and tumors.
Small Intestine separates the essence from the waste of food and transports the latter to the Large Intestine.
The tissues associated with Heart, Small Intestine, Pericardium and San jiao are blood vessels, brain and nerves.
The emotion connected with Heart, Small Intestine, Pericardium and San jiao is joy.
The sense organ controlled by Heart, Small Intestine, Pericardium and San jiao is the tongue.
Kidneys regulate blood pressure and govern aging, memory, sex drive, reproduction and vital energy.
Urinary Bladder controls water circulation.
The tissues associated with the kidneys and urinary bladder are bones, joints, cartilage, teeth, nails, and head hair.
The emotions connected with the kidneys and urinary bladder are anxiety, fear, and worry.
The sense organs controlled by the kidneys and urinary bladder are the ears.
Liver stores and regulates blood, secretes bile, and transports blood, bile and hormones.
Gall Bladder stores bile and controls mental activities.
The tissues associated with Liver and Gall Bladder are muscle, tendon, and nails.
The emotions connected with the Liver and Gall Bladder are anger and frustration.
The sense organs controlled by the Liver and Gall Bladder are the eyes.
Lungs regulate respiration and blood circulation.
Large Intestine excretes waste.
The tissues associated with the Lungs and Large Intestine is skin, body hair, and nails.
The emotions connected with the Lungs and Large Intestine is sadness, grief and loss.
The sense organ controlled by the Lungs and Large Intestine is the nose.
Spleen regulates digestion, metabolism and the immune system, as well as blood circulation. (Allergies are an indication of a Spleen imbalance.)
Stomach regulates ingestion, digestion, and transportation of food and liquids.
The tissues associated with Spleen and Stomach are all soft tissues and the four limbs.
The emotions connected with the Spleen and Stomach are all emotions.
The sense organ controlled by the Spleen and Stomach is the mouth.
As you can see it is in one's best interest to keep the organs balanced and functioning optimally. Exposure to everyday, modern life (stress, pollution and inadequate nutrition) is all it takes to create an imbalance in one or more of the organs.
Here are some examples of how imbalances in the organs can cause one to become ill or susceptible to injury:
A stressful job may cause one to feel frustrated or angry. These emotions then create an imbalance in the liver or gall bladder which then expresses itself in the form of tension, pain, or weakness of the muscles, and perhaps eye disorders.
Worrying over finances or the fate of a loved one may cause one to begin to suffer from joint disease, blood pressure irregularities, and graying or loss of hair, all a result of imbalanced kidneys created by the emotions of fear and anxiety.
Pollution, which can create an imbalance in any of the organs, may throw the lungs into a state of imbalance which can surface in the form of a skin problem and/or depression.
An imbalance in the heart created by imbalances in other organs can cause one to suffer from a lack of joy. Or, a work-a-holic who denies oneself joy may suffer from heart disease, or insomnia due to excessive mental activity at bedtime (a symptom of a heart imbalance).
As for explaining why it is that sticking needles into points along invisible meridians has an effect on the organs, the scientific world cannot yet explain. All we know is that it works, and we can be thankful that it is so.
Why wouldn't our bodies be equipped with such a system?
We can see the effects of energy, yet we cannot see the energy itself. By witnessing its effects we know that energy exists.
~To your Health
* A truly healthy diet consists of plenty of fresh fruit (eaten on an empty stomach), vegetables, whole grains, nuts, seeds and legumes. Animal products, if eaten, should be limited, and free of growth hormones and/or antibiotics. Fresh fruit juice and purified water are healthy alternatives to soft drinks. It is best to abstain from processed foods and drinks.
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Marcy Raybourn, L.Ac. License # 0199