Postpartum Recovery 月子調理

Postpartum Recovery is a very unique tradition in Asian cultures. It can be dated back  to 2,000 years ago in ancient China when special herbal formulas were used to help postpartum moms to recover faster. This tradition is still carried on until today, notably in Taiwan, China and Korea. In Taipei, the capital city of Taiwan, there are more than thirty standalone postpartum recovery centers covering an area that’s a little less than 105 square miles. A study shows more than 97% of women in Taiwan today have had some types of medical recovery during their postpartum period. Another study shows postpartum mom who had support whether a medical or just family support demonstrate better recovery and less chances of getting postpartum depression. For a more comprehensive list of the benefits please click HERE.

作月子,是華人一項特殊的傳統。中醫有幾千年的歷史,因此它的養生理論早落實在漢民族的食衣住行裡。華人做月子也有一兩千年的歷史,這源自於傳統中醫的理論,相信婦女在生完孩子之後氣血均衰,容易引發舊疾或病邪侵入,因此必須利用這一段期間好好養生來幫助康復。在現今的台灣社會,作月子的比例幾乎高達90%,這代表現代人肯定月子的意義及重要性。

我們診所在西雅圖甚至是整個華盛頓州,大概是唯一一個提供坐完整月子療程的中醫診所。過去我們主要的對象是美國人,因為相較之下華人大部分都懂得在坐月子期間要請長輩或月嫂來家中幫忙,但是這個概念在美國基本上是不存在的。跟我們合作的許多的Midwives(助產士)當知道我們有在幫媽媽們坐月子都紛紛把他們的客戶介紹給我們。她們都了解產後復原的重要,但是也感嘆在現代的西方國家普遍沒有這種概念,這也難怪這邊的產後憂鬱比例這麼高。其實不只產後的情緒問題,接下來連身體也垮了,到更年期的時候可以說是集百病於一身,身體每個器官每個細胞都發出求救的訊號。我看很多更年期或較年邁的美國婦女,他們最常跟我講的一件事就是要去換人工關節了。我常常在想,要是這些女性們早一點有養生的概念,或許就可以免於接下來這一刀了。

在1st Choice Acupuncture & Integrative Medicine,我們基本上以課程搭配療程,幫住在西雅圖的美國媽咪們了解坐月子的重要性及生活中要注意的事項,接著開中藥加速她們在坐月子期間的康復。

不管用科學中藥粉或是傳統中藥材,相信每一個媽咪們都有一個疑問:中藥安全嗎?很遺憾,在台灣,目前的中藥幾乎都源自中國大陸,普遍仍有重金屬污染、農藥殘留等問題。健保給付的GMP科學中藥粉經過煎煮、萃取、濃縮等製程,其生菌、重金屬、農藥的殘留理論上相當少,可低於國際標準,但有些藥廠因成本、技術考量,在科學中藥裡摻雜比例不一的生藥粉,導致生菌過多、重金屬、農藥、黃麴毒素殘留等等問題。GMP科學中藥雖經政府主管單位抽驗把關,但目前台灣的標準卻比國際的寬鬆甚多。僅極少數藥廠秉著標準製程,不摻雜生藥粉,符合國際標準,患者求診服藥時通常也不知服用的藥粉有無摻雜生藥粉,只能自求多福 (源自http://yibian.hopto.org/shu/?sid=81946)。

很幸運的,我們在美國可以從信譽好、有良知的藥商那進完全無重金屬、農藥、黃麴毒素殘留的中藥。這對消費者來說真是一大福音,不但服用了有效果同時對身體也沒有負擔。這主要是因為從國外進口的任何食品都要經過FDA審核,這是其一。再加上美國的醫師及消費者對於食品安全更加謹慎,所以這邊大部分的藥商為了要搏取醫師的信賴,除了進口一般的中藥(就是沒有經過正式檢驗,在一般華人超市買的到的中藥)外,也會進口較高檔的中藥材。這些是經過很多檢驗,可以提供證明沒有重金屬污染或農藥殘留問題的中藥材。近幾年普遍大眾對食品的要求更高,因為食品汙染越來越嚴重,不是農藥汙染就是基因改造的問題,讓消費者現在選擇更加謹慎。也基於這個原因,有機農耕開始興起,有機的中藥材也開始如雨後春筍般出現於美國的中藥市場。我們1st Choice Acupuncture & Integrative Medicine在跟廠商進中藥時,如果有有機藥材就會進有機的,最起碼也都只進高檔的中藥材,絕不進那些來歷不明可能有汙染的劣等貨。我們相信任何的醫療行為,都應該遵守醫師畢業時宣誓所引用的希波克拉提斯宣言中的第一項條文:First Do No Harm。

最近由於較常接觸台灣及中國的媽咪們,他們都希望坐月子期間不要用科學中藥,要用傳統的中藥來煎煮。我們花了許多的工夫找尋美國最好的藥商,引進最優質的中藥材,現在正式推出專門針對華人的月子調理療程。對本療程有興趣的媽咪可以跟我們預約前來診所跟我們醫師做免費的諮詢。

TCM Herbal Medicine Story

All our friends at 1st Choice Acupuncture & Integrative Medicine in Bellevue know about the importance of taking herbal medicine between acupuncture sessions. Herbal medicine works slightly differently than acupuncture although they are based on the same principles. Just think about if you want to lose weight but maintaining good health, you will do exercise (acupuncture), and on a balanced diet (herbal medicine). It won’t work if you solely rely on just one of the two. We will be covering some interesting stories about herbal medicine from time to time so you get a chance to learn about them.

Some of our patients express their concerns towards the safety issue of herbal medicine. Here at 1st Choice Acupuncture & Integrative Medicine, we only use the finest herbal medicine available in the U.S. All our herbs have been tested for heavy metal and harmful chemicals. On average our herbs are tested 15 times before they are delivered to our clinic. More details will be covered on the next article.
In ancient time there was a man named Mo Yao.  One day, he saw an old elephant lying beside the reeds and was groaning with pain.  The elephant noticed Mo Yao passing by and raised his feet, which had a sharp nail stuck in it.  In order to relieve the elephant from pain, Mo Yao pulled the nail out, but blood started gushing from the wound.  Seeing the blood, the baby elephant nearby quickly grabbed some Artemisia and passed them to Mo Yao.  Mo Yao then placed the herb on the wound and the blood stopped shortly.

In order to express their gratitude, the old elephant and the baby elephant often visited Mo Yao and assisted with plowing after recovery.  More importantly, Artemisia was now being recognized as a herb with medicinal value.

Artemesia is the leaf of Artemisia argyi Levl. Et Vant.  Its properties are bitter, acrid, and warm.  It enters through the spleen, liver, and kidney channels.

Actions & Indications:

  • Warms the womb and stops bleeding.
  • Warms the womb and pacifies the fetus.
  • Disperses cold and alleviates pain.

Caution & Contradiction

Use with caution in cases of heat in the blood or yin deficiency.

To find out how Oriental herbal medicine may address your health concerns, and to schedule for your free consultation please contact us today at 425-392-8881! Our office is located conveniently on Bel-Red Rd. in Bellevue, WA.

The original article is from Brion Research Institute, translated by Sun Ten Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd.

Chinese Herbal Medicine Helps Menopause Symptoms

A new study in the journal Menopause suggests that a Chinese herbal medicine preparation called Dang Gui Buxue Tang can help relieve menopause symptoms like hot flashes.

The phase II clinical trial was intended to investigate the dose-response relationship of the Chinese medicine with short-term menopausal symptoms and quality of life in postmenopausal women.
The randomized double-blind and multiple dose trial involved 60 postmenopausal women who suffered severe hot flashes and night sweats at the time of enrollment.  Participants were asked to use the Chinese herbal medicine at 1.5, 3.0, or 6.0 g/day for 12 weeks.

Primary outcomes monitored in the study included vasomotor symptoms, Greene Climacteric Scale  score, and Menopause-Specific Quality of Life  score, and secondary outcomes were serum hormones and lipid profiles.

There was a difference in the effect of the Chinese medicine observed in different dose groups.  The greatest improvement in psychological/psychosocial experience was found in the group receiving 6.0 g of Dang Gyui Buxue Tang per day.

Both 3.0 and 6.0 grams of Dang Gui Buxue Tang per day were associated with significantly reduced frequency and severity of hot flashes and night sweats, 14.5 to 21.2% reduction in hot flashes and 28.6 to 39.6 % reduction in night sweats among the group receiving 3.0 g per day, compared to 34.9 to 37.4% reduction in hot flashes and 10.1 to 12.8% reduction in night sweats among the group receiving 6.0 g per day.

No within- or between- group difference was observed in hormones and lipid profiles.

The researchers concluded “DBT (Tang Gui Buxue Tang) preparations at 6.0 g/day significantly improve physical and psychological scores and significantly reduce vasomotor symptoms from baseline. The treatment was well tolerated, with no serious adverse events noted during the 12-week intervention period. The changes do not affect hormones and lipid profiles.”

The common treatment for menopause symptoms like hot flashes and night sweats is hormone replacement therapy, which is effective, but long term use can increase risk of heart disease and breast cancer.

Bioidentical hormones are also used by some women.  It should be noted that according to the Food and Drug Administration, use of bioidentical hormones has not been proved to be safer than the conventional hormone replacement therapy.

Women with menopause symptoms who need to be treated may want to consider non-hormone remedies as a priority.  Please contact 1st Choice Acupuncture & Integrative Medicine (425.392.8881) to know about your options!

 

References:

http://www.foodconsumer.org/newsite/Nutrition/Supplements/herbs/chinese_herbal_medicine_helps_menopause_symptoms_0929120941.html