Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) is a type of holistic, natural health care system that dates back at least 2,500 years to the year 200 B.C. TCM is “holistic” and “natural” because it stimulates the body’s own healing mechanisms and takes into account all aspects of a patient’s life, rather than just several obvious signs or symptoms. TCM practitioners view the body as a complex network of interconnected parts, rather than separate systems or organs.

According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, Traditional Chinese Medicine treatments aim to correct imbalances in the body and primarily work in three major ways:

  • Addressing a patient’s external factors and environment
  • Helping patients relate to their internal emotions in a healthier way, including managing stress
  • Improving someone’s lifestyle factors, including diet and exercise routine

What are the benefits of having TCM treatments?

TCM treats the mind, body and spirit as a single entity. This holistic approach is derived from fundamental beliefs in the Chinese culture, which emphasise the inseparable nature of Man with the Universe, as well as the need for balance and harmony.

TCM employs a system of diagnosis, therapy and medication to restore that balance by boosting the body’s immune system in an attempt to fight off pathogens.

A TCM treatment usually includes either one of or a combination of medicinal herbs, nutritional therapies, physical treatments such as acupuncture, moxibustion, cupping, massage or Tuina, and therapeutic exercises such as taichi and related breathing techniques.

Benefits of TCM include:

  • Reducing Inflammation

    Reducing inflammation in your body is extremely important because inflammation serves as the root cause of a wide variety of different diseases, including heart disease, diabetes, autoimmune diseases, and even cancer.

    Traditional Chinese medicine can help to reduce inflammation and the consequences associated with it through a number of different means, including herbal treatments, acupuncture, and acupressure.

    In the process, Chinese medicine can also help you to stop any lifestyle habits that are harmful to your body and make inflammation worse, such as eating too much, smoking cigarettes, or drinking too much alcohol.

  • Improve Your Muscle Strength and Flexibility

    When we want to improve strength and flexibility in our muscles, we commonly turn to strength training exercises. That’s great, but traditional Chinese medicine is another way you can improve your muscles as well.

    In fact, practicing tai chi regularly provides you with an important aerobic workout, and practicing it for just three months can improve your balance, help you maintain or even enhance your flexibility and agility, and boost the overall strength in your muscles.

  • Protects and Improves Your Cognitive Health

    Protecting your physical health should be a top priority for you, but equally if not more important is to protect your mental health, and yet again traditional Chinese medicine is great for this.

    Chinese herbs don’t just help reduce inflammation, they can also help to relieve stress in the process. This is because Chinese herbs can effectively regulate the hormones that protect your brain, which also serves to control the immune response of your body. Using Chinese herbs decreases the risk of you developing dementia later in life as well.

  • Helps Lower the Body’s Stress Response

    Acupressure is beneficial not only for liver health, but also for reducing stress. Acupressure is believed to stimulate a key point on the liver channel meridian, located at the top of the foot, that is related to emotional trauma and negative “energies,” such as resentment, bitterness, worry, anxiety and depression. Releasing these negative feelings can help lower the body’s “fight-or-flight” response, which has significant benefits: reduced blood pressure, improved sleep, more energy, less muscle tension and more. Acupuncture can also be very helpful for managing stress.

  • Has Very Few Side Effects

    Most medications and stimulants designed to help the body often come with a number of bad side effects, but fortunately, this is not the case with Chinese medicine. In fact, the few side effects that do come with Chinese medicine are practically harmless.

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