Shifting from disease management towards health promotion.
What does “health” mean in Chinese medicine? The Chinese term for health is jian kang(健康) ”. Jian means with strength, Kang means access with no blockage. Our health is of fundamental importance to living a happy and rewarding life. Sadly we often don’t realize it until we become sick.
When we go to a clinic, there should be a specific reason for doing so. Is it to cure a disease? To control an illness? Sometimes to prevent accidental disease attacks or further progression of the disease? Numerous medications and medical techniques were created to meet these kinds of need, such as pain killers, anti-depressants, and other agents to control blood glucose levels, blood lipids and blood pressure. Disease management is treating symptoms of an illness, and/or preventing potential progression of the disease. Health promotion means strengthening the capacity of self-healing and being flexible to stress. These two targets are different and sometimes contradictory.
What does earth grounding medicine means? In the theory of Chinese medicine, the gut is designated as the Spleen system or earth element. The property of the earth element is likened to the soil that permits sowing, growing and reaping. It acts like a mother, working hard to nurture. We request our guts to digest food, supplements and medicine to care for the rest of our bodies, but the health of our guts is often overlooked. Digestive symptoms are the most commonly seen side effects when taking medication. Not surprisingly it is the first system to break down and its impacts often underrated as it's usually not a life-threatening situation initially. Once the engine of the gut turns off, however, the whole body will be weakened and its functions will be blocked, our health will be at risk. Fortunately, our bodies have remarkable ways to self-heal, and the health of the Spleen earth system plays a critical role in the self-healing process. A panel of tools exists in Chinese medicine that could be used to support the health of the Spleen earth system, and help shift the paradigm from managing diseases to promoting or maintaining health.
Yuwen Cen, Ph.D., DAOM, L.Ac
1111 N Civic Dr Ste111,
Walnut Creek, CA 94598
Tel: (925) 393 9525
Constitution and Herbal Supplement Counseling