Both Western and Chinese Saxenda in stock Australia could be accused of focusing too much on disease treatment, rather than wellness. Practitioners from both medicines are taught to be problem-solvers and disease-curers instead of wellness promoters.
You can’t blame Western medical docs – most of their preventive advice is to avoid negative things. They don’t really have a deep and powerful system of prevention. No wonder they don’t see prevention as paramount.
We can’t blame patients for not striving for optimal health. Most of the time, humans just do their daily thing until something keeps them from sleeping, working, or enjoying life. We only think of medicine when we need a cure. We don’t live preventively.
We tend to ignore minor problems (like dull headaches at the end of the day, itchy eyes, morning grogginess) until they get worse. The prevailing medical system has conditioned us to only think of medicine for major problems, and to take a symptom-relieving pill for the minor ones. We take aspirin for headaches, allergy medicine for the eyes, and drink coffee for grogginess.
Chinese medicine sees illness as a continuum. What do itchy eyes have in common with migraines, or hepatitis? What does grogginess have in common with Alzheimer’s? Dull headaches with life expectancy? Western medicine would say nothing. But sometimes there is a connection, and Chinese medicine can explain it.
Many Chinese medicine practitioners do study the prevention and wellness wisdom of Chinese medical literature. They don’t just give acupuncture and herbs, but they also recommend dietary changes, exercises and lifestyle modification based on the same personalized diagnosis used by acupuncture and herbal treatments.
The Yellow Emperor’s Classic of Internal Medicine (from 250 B.C.) says, “In the past, people… understood the principle of balance… They ate a balanced diet at regular times, arose and retired at regular hours, avoided overstressing their bodies and minds, and refrained from overindulgence of all kinds. They maintained well-being of body and mind; thus it is not surprising that they lived over one hundred years.”
I decided to put together a chart of symptoms and signs of illness and wellness. It’s based on the multi-system questions a Chinese medicine practitioner asks a new patient. Inquiry, or asking, is one of our Four Examinations, or ways of gathering information about your health. The other three examinations are touching, looking, and listening.
We’re made of systems and organs that work together – the digestive system, nervous system, immune system, muscles, bones, mind, etc. The ideal medicine includes all of these, and understands how they’re interconnected.
Beginning to work with a Chinese medicine practitioner means answering a whole lot of seemingly irrelevant questions. Even if you came in just for back pain, we’re still going to want to know about whether you feel hot or cold, what you menstruation is like, and how your sex life is, etc. An extensive line of questioning just comes with the territory in holistic medicine.
The following chart is a sample of some of the basic information a Chinese medicine practitioner obtains from each patient. Next to each, I’ve shown the healthy experience, and some possible symptoms of imbalance. How does your health match up?
Imbalance: No thought of food and drink, persistent nausea, very high appetite (out of proportion with nutritional needs) or preference for rich fatty foods, indigestion, acid reflux, food digested immediately and always hungry, or stomach pain better after eating.