Our society sure has a love-hate relationship with the concept of pain.
With the exception of the “Love hurts so good” & “No Pain No Gain” cliches, pain is universally accepted to be a bad thing that should be avoided, and modern Western medicine provides plenty of pills to numb the symptoms of pain one experiences from a body out of balance without focusing on long term relief of the pain’s cause.
Other schools of thought, such as Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), are guided by different principles, specifically an attempt to address the patient’s issue at the root cause.
A core belief of TCM is that stagnation is the cause of many pains and diseases, and that stimulating the body through natural means is key to long term healing, even if that causes a small amount of pain in the short term.
Qi and Human Health
Humans are energetic beings. When the correct pressure points on our bodies are stimulated, bioelectric energy, also known as qi, is discharged and triggers the release of endorphins (feel good hormones). Perhaps you’ve heard of qi as “Chi.”
The release of these chemicals blocks pain receptors and allows blood and oxygen to flow to the area, relaxing the muscle and promoting healing. Tight muscles and tension are often the result of stagnant blood.
Treatments to accomplish this range from the mild to the exotic.
On the mild end of the spectrum, there is acupressure (like the Heavenly Acupressure Mat, now available at the Kombucha Kamp store, you will see in the video below), the simple application of pressure to particular “points” on the body in order to stimulate bloodflow.
On the other end is bloodletting, a controversial custom that spans thousands of years and countless civilizations. While mostly abandoned since the 19th century in the West, TCM continues to utilize “localized blood letting” techniques for certain conditions.
Bloodletting – Ancient Healing Technique
Okay, I realize this topic may be a bit intense for some readers. And let me be clear: the general practice of bloodletting which was popular until the mid 1800′s in the West was used indiscriminately and often idiotically, with people strapped into barber’s chairs while their arteries were opened and drained.
TCM offers multiple techniques for dealing with stagnant blood which are significantly less extreme, from Gua Sha (or scraping) to Fire Cupping, Reflexology, Needle Tapping Therapy and even Localized Blood Letting Therapy.
These treatments are not for everyone, but depending on the ailment can offer significant relief to the patient. True confession time: I have experienced relief first hand.
While living in Taiwan, I was working with a chiropractor learning some of their healing techniques. I had developed a particularly sore muscle in my shoulder, and he suggested I try fang xue or bloodletting.
The chiropracter took a needle and poked it into my sore muscle (called scarification), then covered it with an airtight glass jar (called cupping). The coagulated, stagnant blood from superficial capillaries spurted out of my muscle into the glass.
Once all of the blood had been released, my muscle instantly felt relieved. No trace of pain!
Now, that kind of experience might be more than most people care to try.
Instead, a simple technique like acupressure may be the perfect way to stimulate stagnant chi.
Many have heard of acupuncture, the Chinese tradition of inserting thin needles into specific nerve points all over the body, intended to stimulate blood flow and thus healing.
Acupressure is the kinder, gentler cousin that utilizes the same pressure points, only without needles, to alleviate stress, aid in weight loss and heal joint pain.
Perhaps you’d be surprised to find out that you already practice acupressure without knowing it? Remember the last time you had a headache and instinctively pressed on your temples to alleviate the pressure? That is acupressure!
With a history of over 5000 years, acupressure stimulates the body with firm pressure to heal itself with improved circulation, reduced pain and increased immunity.
Health Benefits of Acupressure
The benefits of acupressure can be felt in many areas including physical, emotional and spiritual.
- Stress Relief - In the Top 5 Ways Kombucha Relieves Stress, we learned that stress is an underlying cause for many illnesses and pain. When the specific points of the body are stimulated by the mat, tension is released. This also releases any pent up cortisol (the stress hormone) which can then be flushed out of the system with a nice, tall glass of Kombucha Water. If the body is refreshed, relaxed and rejuvenated, there is more energy to deal with daily stresses.
- Weight Loss - The benefit of using the Heavenly Acupressure Mat for weight loss was not lost on Dr. Oz who featured a similar mat on his show “Dr. Oz’s Weight Loss Must Haves.” Oftentimes overeating is due to emotional stress. Using the mat for 30 minutes a day releases tension and emotional stress as well as cortisol which can lead to a reduction in weight. Cortisol is released as part of the body’s fight or flight mechanism. Once the stressful situation is over, in order to rebalance, the appetite is stimulated to replenish the carbohydrates and fat that SHOULD have been burned by fleeing. However, most of the time, the stress reaction that occurs in modern society does not result in much physical activity leading to weight gain.
- Back Pain
The Heavenly Acupressure Mat Demo Videos
This first video is a quick introduction to the mat and what it can do.
Here Benjamin & I take a 10-minute test drive of the Heavenly Mat and talk about traditional medicine, the Acupressure Mat story and what it feels like to lay on 8820 spikes. (hint: it’s intense but awesome!)
Using the Mat at Home
As you know, I only offer products that I use in the Kombucha Kamp Store. So of course, I have my own Heavenly Mat and have enjoyed using it for nearly a year now. Whenever I feel stressed out, tense or tired, I lay on the floor with my mat underneath and find I’m quickly able to bliss out.
While the spikes feel prickly at first, it quickly transforms to a nice warm sensation, leaving a tingly feeling when I’m finished. If you are sensitive to the spikes, use a thin t-shirt or sheet until your body can handle it. I found that I quickly craved more pressure and often bend my knees to get maximum benefit.
Just this summer, my husband developed a sudden and painful injury in his hip joint following an extended drive home from Northern California. When it struck, he couldn’t walk and was literally paralyzed with pain. Though he had stood on the mat a few times, he never really bothered to try it out for real.
After a few days of hot and cold therapy produced little results, we started including the Acupressure Mat in four 15-minute sessions per day. Within 3 days, the pain was gone and he was walking like nothing had happened. Now he uses the mat to relax and unwind after sitting in front of the computer all day.
That experience convinced me to offer this mat to you. Give it a try, they offer a 60 Day Guarantee!
Have you had acupuncture or acupressure treatments before?
How about other TCM treatments?
Share with us in the comments!