Salt and Chinese Herbs

Oh wow, what a week! To start, I have been combating an oncoming cold/sore throat with lots of sweating and gargling of salt water. I have discovered the true healing magic of basic salt; not just for french fries anymore! I now swear the salt water is better than any OTC remedy for a sore throat. However, when it comes to my internal issues like muscles, joints, circulation, pain, etc., I turned to acupuncture. For a long while, friends and colleagues have been suggesting the healing to me and I have been saying, “Oh, I know…I should…it’s expensive, (blah, blah, blah)” Like many things, it’s easy to make excuses, especially financially in my case, and not do the things we need most. But…I went to the Academy of Chinese Culture and Health Sciences in Oakland last Wednesday and had no idea what I was getting myself into.

First off, I was there for 2.5 hours, which included a lot of question answering, gazing at my tongue, and then the doctor showed up. An old wise man, he spoke to the assistant only in Chinese, leaving me wondering what the hell they were saying about me and also intrigued by all the knowledge I could not understand one bit. They proceeded to put needles into my shoulder to remedy some serious tightness and strain. Well, they hit the point! My spinal for my ACL surgeries didn’t hurt as bad as those damn small needles. Then, they proceed to lie me on my back and put burning herbs on my lower torso to warm and circulate the blood. I felt like I was at some shamanic retreat in the middle of nowhere…until I hear a fire truck and realize I’m in the middle of downtown Oakland 🙂

I end up leaving with three bags of Chinese herbs to be boiled in a specific clay pot. I expected this to be “interesting” (a.k.a disgusting) and little did I know I am now drinking what tastes like a tiny forest in my mouth for twice a day. The experience of boiling, straining, reheating and then actually drinking the herbs has been amusing and satisfying (besides the drinking part!). I have enjoyed the process of soaking, boiling, straining and processing the herbs. The cycle of cooking them and producing this sludge like liquid than supposedly can heal me feels like I’m tapping into being conscious of my health in a way that I never have.

Lately, tapping into my health has been recovering my knee with lots of physical exercises, strengthening, icing, slowing getting back into activities, etc. However, this is a more passive and thought out, organic process of connecting with the Earth and literally drinking that into my body. After the first cup, I didn’t know if I could do it, but after the first day, I am determined to stick with them. Who knows, maybe I’ll go back for more! So for this week, salt and herbs have been my saviors. I can’t imagine what next week will bring!! Maybe just some Silk Nog to balance the salty with some sweet 🙂

What remedies do you find to heal you? Are you tapping into the deeper processes of connecting in some way?

Enjoy the weekend!


2 thoughts on “Salt and Chinese Herbs

  1. Hannah! YAY for trying acupuncture – I’m a huge fan! You’re lucky to have such a great Chinese medicine school so close. I’ve been exploring trigger points to deal with some nasty low back pain…and let me tell you, it’s AMAZING. I have always asked a massage therapist or a friend to deal with the knots in my body, but now, I’m doing it myself and it’s incredibly rewarding (/painful). :>

    Thanks for sharing your story! I can’t wait to keep reading!!

    So much love!!

    1. Funny how the rewarding stuff is always the most painful!! Glad to hear its getting better. The herbs are weird because it’s like a blind leap of faith. I can’t see or feel any immediate benefits but hopefully they are making their mark! So good to hear from you!!

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