Category: Acupuncture

Acupuncture and Blood Circulation

Author: Kayla Balfour, Registered Acupuncturist

Acupuncture and blood circulation card

Ever wondered if Acupuncture can help with your blood circulation?

Today I’m going to share some cool facts about a point called He Gu.

He Gu is Located on the back of the hand, on the web between the index and thumb.
This point is a powerhouse to help improve circulation in the body. According to the Chinese medical philosophy, this point is a strong mover of “Qi” – Qi is an energy found everywhere around you and is vital in moving blood around the body. So, when you are feeling cold all the time, especially in your hands and feet, this point is commonly used to help get that circulation moving.


Fabiana Freire from the Instituto Jing Medicina da Dor had the brilliant idea to film a client receiving this point with an infrared camera so you can see this amazing point in action. Essentially blue means cold, and red means hot – take a close look at the before and after of this client’s hands, it’s pretty spectacular!


Visit Kayla in the clinic to discover how acupuncture can benefit you!

COVID Fatigue is Real

Author: Diana Alvarez, Registered Acupuncturist

Diana Alvarez a Registered Acupunturist performing a massage for covid fatigue

In recent weeks, there has been an increase in people turning to acupuncture for support to help with stress and physical pain. In my practice I have noticed people are having trouble staying asleep as their minds just can’t seem to shut off – and they say it’s because of COVID-19.

Alongside this, there are many more tight shoulders to help release these days in clinic. Not only because posture became a concern while working from home, but because our bodies are guarded, so our shoulders are working hard to protect the “Heart” and “Spirit” from the outside world.

The use of acupuncture to support these tough times is a good idea. We need to calm the mind, help reduce its running around endlessly, and there is good help for this!

The Stomach and Spleen organ systems are recognized in Chinese Medicine as being responsible for overthinking and worry when they are out of balance. They are a Yin and Yang pair, so they easily influence each other, and if we needle a Stomach point like ST 36*, it helps bring balance to its best friend quickly. It sends an army of support to the Spleen so its pattern of ruminating can take a break.

*ST 36 is an acupuncture point which calms the mind and is a strong “QI” mover. QI (or Chi) is the energy flow created along the pathways that connect the acupuncture points on the body.

And of course, we will want to reduce the Heart and Small Intestine’s involvement in nighttime overthinking. The Heart needs to rest at night, go into its special cavity in the chest to cozy up for the night. But if it feels unsafe, after a couple of hours of sleep, it doesn’t trust it’s okay to be alone in its home. It wakes us up feeling all anxious, and the mind continues to race. With the Heart and Small intestine’s special bond of being another Yin and Yang pair, using the point SI 3 (small intestine point #3) is perfect. It helps with the Heart’s dilemma of not feeling safe while sleeping, it is the Master Point for calming the Brain, and (drum roll please!) it is the key meridian (channel of energy or QI) that opens up the shoulder! Now, we have a recipe for the overthinking, the anxiety and shoulder pain.

If you are new to acupuncture, please consider booking in for a free 15-minute consultation and issues specific to your concerns can be explained in more detail. The needles used in acupuncture are very thin, allowing for an incredibly gentle approach that calms the nervous system, and is a safe and hygienic treatment that can help make a difference.

Meet with Diana by contacting Pure Body Health Victoria: (778) 265-0043

Ear Acupuncture – What?

Author: Diana Alvarez, R.Ac.

There are many ways to understand the body and your health, one of which is by using a microsystem. You might have heard of such approaches as foot or hand reflexology. Well, in Chinese Medicine, we use the microsystem of the ear as a representation of the whole body. The use of a microsystem allows each part of the body to be accessed with a corresponding point or area on an external part of the body – in this case, the ear.


Source: acu-clinic.com

Why the Ear?

The ear is directly connected to some of the 12 cranial nerves stemming from the brain, so it is quick to relay a message back to the brain and create a change. The ear also has a unique capacity (because it is such a thin membrane of tissue) to access and stimulate the nervous system. Specifically, the sympathetic nervous system, related to our “fight or flight” response, and the parasympathetic nervous system, related to calming responses. Yes, this is an intelligent sense organ!

How Is Ear Acupuncture Done?

To stimulate the ear point, an ear seed, magnet, or very thin acupuncture needle is placed in a specific spot which relates to the area of the body or internal organ function that needs to be addressed. There are 90 ear points listed that relate to limbs, head, bodily function and senses to treat conditions internally and externally. 

Source: gpcacupuncture.com

However, ear acupuncture is not just for physical pain. It also stimulates emotional and mental wellness, as one of the most common points used is to calm the mind and reduce anxiety and stress.

What Does It Help Treat?

Ear acupuncture is commonly used to treat sciatica, low back pain, OCD, smoking and other addictions, digestive disorders, brain trauma, chronic pain, hormonal conditions, migraines, insomnia, and depression. All of these conditions and more can be effectively assessed and treated when using the ear.

Modern Day Use of Ear Acupuncture

The United States is known for an approach called the NADA protocol. It is an ear acupuncture approach used for trauma, addiction and stress. The five points used in the ear immediately stimulate the body to shift from being on high alert to a less agitated state. It is widely put into practice in high stress aid relief situations. For example, after people have witnessed something traumatic such as an earthquake, where a whole community may be affected. Ear acupuncture is being used as a first aid response, and is a helpful way for those affected to find their way back to balance.

In Europe, Germany is especially well known for it’s research and use of Auricular Acupuncture (ear) to treat pain and break the pain feedback loop. Used by over 14,000 German physicians, it has been shown to work so well that body acupuncture is actually the less common approach used in Europe!

My Own Experiences With Ear Acupuncture

As an acupuncturist, I have seen ear acupuncture work well for anxiety, obsessive thinking, insomnia and depression. One of my clients who suffers from panic and racing thoughts was transformed in just one visit. His mind calmed down, his physical fidgets reduced and facial skin tone shifted. Seeing him for consecutive sessions really helped get him back to a more peaceful place.

Another client came to see me due to her stressful job and a lifetime of living with both depression and anxiety. After the session she looked rejuvenated, a quiet overcame her mind and her body, and she was no longer holding the tension she came in with. Ear acupuncture is a safe, effective and accessible approach and is being used all over the world with good results.

Come into Pure Body Health and book in with myself, Melissa or Brook and see what ear acupuncture can do for you! Hear hear to good health!

Facial Acupuncture: The Answer to Healthy, Glowing Skin

Author: Brook Paulin, R.TCM.P

Are you looking for support in maintaining or reclaiming a vital and radiant appearance? Perhaps you’re already taking steps to live a healthy life and are seeking some assistance in making those efforts manifest outwardly in your physical appearance, to glow from the inside out? You may have heard that acupuncture can be applied as a cosmetic procedure without the risk of toxic chemicals or having to go under the knife, but you might also be wondering how it works, or if it will be effective for you?

It’s no secret that a healthy mind and body is a beautiful thing. Your natural beauty is something that you can harness when you take care of your body and allow your inner radiance to shine through. So, how can facial rejuvenation acupuncture help?

In Traditional Chinese Medicine, the state of the physical health, emotions, and spirit is reflected on the skin of the face. You look your best because your internal health is reflected on your face. Cosmetic Acupuncture is an exciting alternative to plastic surgery and potentially unhealthy ‘non-invasive’ techniques, because it not only focuses on the face but on the whole body as well.

What cosmetic results might people expect from Facial Rejuvenation Acupuncture?

  • Improvement in the fine lines and tone of the face.
  • Diminishing effect on deeper wrinkles by relaxing facial muscle tension.
  • Moisturized, radiant, and softer skin.
  • Improved muscle tone and firmer jaw line, as well as reduction in the beginning of jowls.
  • Reduction or elimination of rosacea and acne and scar tissue.
  • Brighter and clearer eyes.
  • Diminishes and improves the presence of deep winkles and puffiness.

General Health Benefits include:

  • Relaxation and Overall Well-being.
  • Improved Sleep and increased energy.
  • Reduction of Hot flashes and Night sweats
  • Reduced Depression and Mild Anxiety.
  • Benefit to Digestive Symptoms.
  • Pain relief.

How Does it Work?

Facial Rejuvenation Acupuncture utilizes a needling technique that is very superficial. The needling brings increased Qi and blood to the face and can improve or increase the production of collagen and elastin. Since this system is based in Traditional Chinese Medicine, acupuncture points on the body are also selected based on your unique presentation to address underlying imbalances and complete the balancing of energy. This results in an overall rejuvenating effect of body, mind, and spirit.

There are two beneficial aspects to this treatment. One is a “root” treatment, which regulates the flow of energy (qi) and removes blockages in the meridians (channels of qi and blood) to improve overall health and restore balance to the body. This constitutional treatment addresses underlying causes, like digestive problems, hormonal imbalance and emotional stress, which become reflected in the face. The other is a local treatment, which directly affects facial appearance. Since many of the meridians begin or end on the face, there is an increase in circulation of blood, lymph and qi to the face that aids in moistening and creating a radiant colour and glow to the skin.

What is the recommended treatment frequency?

Recommended treatment frequency involves 2 treatments per week spaced 2 days apart for a series of 10 cumulative treatments, followed by maintenance appointments that are scheduled every 2 – 4 weeks to optimize results. Commitment to adequate and regular treatments is very important as the matrix of collagen and elastin takes 4 weeks to become fixed.

Since each individual is unique, the response to treatment will vary depending on your age and lifestyle. Generally, results are noticeable after 6-7 sessions, although a radiant complexion and brightness in the eyes may be seen after the first treatment. The recommended course of treatment is 10 sessions, and should be done 2 times a week. A treatment lasts about 90 minutes.

Book a free consultation to find out if Facial Rejuvenation Acupuncture is right for you!