In this day and age, it is common to want instant gratification. If you have a craving for a certain type of food, you log on to an app, order your food, and have it delivered to your door in under 30 minutes. If you want new music, you simply download it and in a matter of seconds can listen to the latest from your favorite artist. The possibilities are nearly endless.
But what about when it comes to your health? If you have a headache, you can take a pill and the headache goes away. If you want to lower your cholesterol, or reduce your blood pressure, or get rid of your anxiety, just take a pill and everything goes back to “normal”. But what about the side effects? What if getting rid of your acid reflux meant the possibility of developing osteoporosis?1 Or lowering your cholesterol could cause joint pain and heartburn?2 Or quitting smoking could cause mental disorders?3 You get the idea. Now sometimes, these medications are absolutely necessary. Often times though, they are taken as a quick fix so that lifestyle changes aren’t needed.
Often times acupuncture and herbs, along with lifestyle modifications, can help with many health issues. However, it is a slower process. Acupuncture is sometimes likened to gardening. Imagine you have a pristine garden. The flowers are unimaginably fragrant, your vegetables look like something that wins first prize at a county fair, and the dirt has that rich, earthy scent. Then you get busy. You don’t weed the garden as often as you should. The flowers are turning brown from lack of water, and the vegetables are no longer producing because the soil hasn’t been fertilized. You could just rip everything out and start over again, but that means losing special, hard to find plants. Or you could slowly tend the garden to bring it back to life.
If you apply the gardening metaphor to your body, you fertilize the body by eating a healthy diet. You water it by staying hydrated, and you use acupuncture as a tool to help remove the weeds that have sprung up during the times of neglect. Yes, it may be a slower process, but in the end, it will allow you to thrive.