As an experienced acupuncture physician, I have been following closely with the development of the Coronavirus pandemic ever since the initial outbreak in China end of 2019. I have been focusing on immune treatment across the board with all my patients, old or young, using acupuncture, moxa, and herbs, and giving expert advice on diet, nutrition and home self-care tips to protect our patients and their families.
The situation is serious, with the number of confirmed cases surpassing 100,000 in early March and going up by the day (at the time of writing this blog, the number of confirmed cases in the U.S. had surpassed 55,000). In order to protect our patients and staff, our clinic is closed and will remain closed until further notice. However, we are providing online services including phone consultation and herbal treatment to support our patients during the office closure. You can reach me at 305-772-4386 or email me at Drshoulitman@gmail.com for any health concerns you may have, including stress, anxiety that many of us experience during this very challenging time. Longevity Acupuncture is committed to helping our patients to strengthen their immune system during the COVID-19 health crisis. Traditional Chinese herbal medicine proves effective to treat the initial onset of colds and flu-like symptoms before it gets worse.
Here are some tips and simple things you can do at home to boost your immune system.
Sunbathing – Patients of our acupuncture clinic understand sunbathing is not only important to promote the natural production of Vitamin D in our body, but it also boosts Yang (warm) energy, which is the vital force of the body. We suggest sunbathing your whole back, the spine, where Du (the uttermost Yang) meridian is located, for 15 minutes every day to optimize your body’s natural resistance.
Diet – At Longevity Acupuncture, diet and nutrition is our pivotal treatment modality. Based on the clinical evidence from China, patients with damp cold internal condition are the most susceptible to the current COVID-19. Therefore, avoid foods that promote internal dampness, such as dairy, gluten, sugar, greasy foods, and uncooked raw cold foods are of critical importance to protect our digestive energy in order to balance our immune system to do its job well. I recommend adding warm spices, anti-viral, anti-inflammatory herbs, such as onion, garlic, ginger, turmeric to your creative cooking.
Sleep – Good sleep is critical to the immune system. According to Traditional Chinese Medicine, 11 p.m. to 1 a.m. is the most important time for sleep to occur, as this time frame pertains Gall Bladder meridian, when the organ qi is most abundant to help the body go through a detox phase. Resting in sleep during this time is vital to overall health.
Supplements – Take immune boost supplements Vitamin C with bioflavonoids, Vitamin D, Zinc and probiotics.
Herbs – Chinese herbal medicine has played an important role in combat of COVID-19 according to overwhelming reports from China. Longevity Acupuncture offers immune supporting herbal consultation based on individual patient presentations. Please call to consult with Dr.Vivian Shou-Litman. 305-772-4386 or email her at Drshoulitman@gmail.com
Water and Tea – Make sure that you are drinking water throughout the day and keeping your throat moist at all times. Dry throat, dry membranes are easy ground to breed bacteria and harbor virus. Warm water with lemon or honey is recommended, avoid cold drinks. Drink Ginger Garlic tea, Turmeric tea twice daily if you are at high risk of exposure.
Destress – Stress and poor immune response are inextricably linked. Our immune system weakens during times of stress. If you are feeling stressed or overwhelmed by the pandemic, take some time to slow down and do things you really enjoy. Staying away from TV, listening to classical music, gardening, meditating, coloring a mandala, do things that lift your spirit and calm your mind.
Deep breathing – Traditional Chinese Medicine regards nose, mouth, lungs, and skin as the whole defensive system against exogenous pathogens. Practice deep breathing daily can boost Lung function and strengthen the defense mechanism, in addition to practice of regular handwashing, avoid touching the face and sneezing, coughing into the elbow.
Exercise – Many of us are confined to our homes right now, but as long as we practice social distancing and wash our hands often, we can still enjoy a walk in the fresh air, a bike ride in the sun, a swim in the private chlorinated pool…. Keep exercising to keep the immune system strong.
Self-quarantine —If you have been exposed to COVID-19 or suspect any symptoms of COVID-19, such as cough, fever, difficulty breathing, you must immediately self-quarantine, and contact your doctor or Miami Dade County Health Department for testing. Please know we do not offer test kits or acupuncture treatment in our clinic for COVID-19 positive patients.
As we face this pandemic, it’s important to realize that we are all in this together. The coming weeks will be difficult for many, but if we support each other, we can get through it. I will keep you updated on any news from the clinic as things develop. Stay safe and healthy.