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Amidst the COVID-19: How Acupuncture and Chinese Herbs Can Boost Your Immune System

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Boosting your immune system with acupuncture and Chinese herbs could potentially help protect you and your family from Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) which is now a pandemic.

As of early March 2020, a total of 174,134 cases has been reported worldwide, causing panic and fear among people. For now, healthcare providers are doing general treatment and management to help patients recover. 

More than what alcohol, tissue paper, or face masks can do, is having a strong immune system.

Below is a real-time report of total confirmed deaths due to COVID-19 (You can add specific countries in the graph by clicking the “Add country” on the upper right-hand corner. Alternatively, you can click the “MAP” at the bottom to see a world visual of occurrences).

While there is no known cure yet and drugs may be under trial, prevention is still key. Learn how you can prevent Coronavirus disease with acupuncture and Chinese herbs.

What is the Coronavirus Disease?

Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is a new strain of virus that is transmitted via droplets. It can easily spread from person to person through coughing and sneezing. 

Some people who have the virus may not show symptoms (asymptomatic) while others may show symptoms (symptomatic). 

Symptoms

It can take 2-14 days before any of the following symptoms appear.

  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Colds
  • Sore throat
  • Shortness of breath
  • Breathing difficulties
  • Tiredness

Who Are At Risk?

People with weak immune function and older people with existing medical conditions are the most vulnerable to Coronavirus disease. Individuals who appear healthy may not get sick or show symptoms, but they might spread the virus to more vulnerable people. This is why preventive measures should be prioritized.

What is Acupuncture?

It is popularly known to relieve pain such as migraine, headaches, body pain, and dysmenorrhea to name a few. It is a treatment wherein very fine needles are inserted at specific points in the body. 

Patients that are undergoing cancer treatment are supported with acupuncture to help with the management. This is done by highly-trained licensed health providers or doctors.

Acupuncture can regulate the immune system to help fight infections and enhance our body’s line of defense. It may even cure some illnesses.

How Does Acupuncture Boost the Immune System?

Acupuncture boosts the immune system by improving blood and lymph circulation and reducing inflammation. Thin needles are inserted through the skin at appropriate locations called “acupuncture points”. 

acupuncture to boost immune system

Acupuncture points are stimulated so that the body can release immune-modulating cells to scan the body for infections, enhance Natural Killer cells that clear these infections, and increase T-cells in the body to destroy bacteria and viruses.

Each point has distinct effects on the body, but all effectively boost the immune system:

Kidney (KI) 27

This point is located on the chest, specifically at the lower part of the clavicle. When stimulated, this acupuncture point releases a superior immune response. It helps relieve cough, asthma, chest pain, and even vomiting.

Large Intestine (LI) 4

Located at the back of the hand, LI4 is the acupuncture point for decongesting. It also works for headaches, fever, colds and sore throat.

Large Intestine (LI) 11 + (Li) 10

LI11 is located on the side of the elbow. It is one of the best points to help the body reduce heat, so it effectively relieves fever. Li10 is often used to prevent colds and flu along with St 36, mentioned below.

Lung (LU) 7

LU7 is a very powerful point located on the forearm around the wrist area. It works to relieve cough, headache, asthma, and sore throat.

Stomach (ST) 36

ST36 is located on the front of the leg, a few inches below the knee. It is stimulated to relieve fatigue, cough and asthma. It also supports the digestive tract.

Other Benefits

  • It is safe.
  • It can be combined with other treatments.
  • Side effects are very few.
  • It relieves pain.
  • It promotes relaxation.

Chinese Herbs to Boost Immune System

Aside from acupuncture, you can also consult your holistic doctor about the use of Chinese herbs to further boost your immune system naturally. What are the most commonly used herbs? Below are some common single herb immune basics, but seeing a Licensed Acupuncturist with training in herbology, you will not likely be prescribed one single herb. Your Acupuncturist will likely prescribe an herbal formula, which has herbs which work in synergy to give you as an individual the most effective results based on your unique needs.

Chinese herbs to boost immune system

Echinacea

Echinacea activates the body’s immune system to release white blood cells to fight against infection from viruses and bacteria. It is commonly used to treat colds, acute flu, and reduce fever. It also helps dispel phlegm. People with autoimmune diseases should use caution and ask a licensed provider before using this herb.

Astralagus

Astralagus effectively strengthens the immune system against cold and flu due to its anti-viral properties. It is also known to have antioxidant properties that protect cells against damage. This herb is also used to alleviate fatigue and stress.

Gingko Biloba

Gingko Biloba is a powerful herb that is part of a family of ancient plants. It contains a high level of antioxidants and is popular for its anti-inflammatory property. It improves blood circulation, supports heart health, and alleviates asthma.

Goldenseal

Goldenseal is a small herb often used against bacterial and fungal infections. It is anti-inflammatory and is used for respiratory tract infections such as the common cold, pneumonia, and cough. Goldenseal is also effective against digestive problems.

AHCC (Mushroom extract)

AHCC boosts immune health against viral infections. This herb is commonly used against colds and flu. It is also known to possess anti-cancer properties.

(Warning: the use of Chinese herbs must be under the advice of a holistic doctor to get optimal results.)

Reminders to Protect Yourself from COVID-19

Your strongest defense is a strong immune system. Aside from acupuncture, Chinese herbs and customized nutrition will help immensely.

Keep your hands clean with soap and water. Avoid close contact with people who may be sick with Coronavirus disease. Maintain proper hygiene and keep your surroundings clean through regular disinfection.

If you are not sick, keep yourself healthy with Vitamin C, getting enough rest and exercise, and boosting your immune system with acupuncture. Make sure that you book with a licensed acupuncturist.

Once you are feeling symptoms that may indicate COVID-19, call your primary care provider first before scheduling acupuncture (or any other medical) treatment. 


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