Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine Therapies for Crohn’s and Colitis

In the United States, there are over a million people suffering from Crohn’s disease and Ulcerative Colitis. The common symptoms of these two conditions include stomach pain, cramping, bloody stools, intestinal bleeding, and frequent diarrhea with urgency and pain. Acupuncture and Chinese medicine in Orlando have been able to address these symptoms for millennia.

Chinese Medicine

A holistic type of medicine, Chinese medicine perceives the body to be made up of interconnected channels and organs. The channels move substances such as qi (which in Chinese means vital energy and is pronounced as chee) all over the body. A freely moving and adequate qi results in wellness and health; diseases develop when there is an imbalance in the body. A proper diet and acupuncture can rectify the specific imbalance allowing the body to heal itself.

In order to correctly identify the specific imbalance that causes the disease, a qualified acupuncturist will ask the patient about the frequency of his/her bowel movements. The acupuncturist will also ask the patient about the other symptoms he/she experiences as well as observe the tongue and feel the patient’s pulse. For colitis and Crohn’s, heat, dampness, and qi stagnation and vacuity are usually the common causative factors.

The acupuncturist treats patient with a unique and customized plan of treatment based on the specific symptoms of the patient. The treatment’s objective may differ per patient depending on whether the patient is suffering from remission or exacerbation. They usually involve the improvement of appetite, the reduction of the inflammation, and the stopping of the bleeding, diarrhea, and pain. Moxibustion, a Chinese medicine procedure wherein an herb known as moxa is burned close to the skin to warm certain acupoints is also often used to boost the treatment’s effectiveness. For Crohn’s and colitis, normally, a treatment course consisting of five to ten acupuncture sessions once or two times a week is recommended.

Recent Study

Acupuncture has been proven to be a superior alternative to conventional type of care for Crohn’s disease, modern research has found. One specific study reveals that acupuncture therapy can enhance well being, better disease state, and improve quality of life. Furthermore, people given acupuncture in that study experienced a lowering of intestinal enzymes in their body which helped relieve the symptoms of Crohn’s disease.

Dietary Recommendations

Diet is extremely essential in TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine) for the treatment of Crohn’s and colitis. TCM diet therapy recommends a balanced and varied diet that consists of easily digestible carbohydrates, cooked vegetables, and moderate amounts of protein. Crohn’s and colitis patients should avoid irritating the intestines by consuming hard to digest foods like hot spices, nuts, and raw vegetables. Vegetables are important for these patients but they need to be cooked as stews, soups, or stir fired rather than served raw. Also, streak and other harder cooked meats, need to be avoided during exacerbation and limited during remission. Eat sliced stir fried meats and stews instead.

Crohn’s and colitis patients would benefit from eating white rice although it must be thoroughly cooked first to improve digestion. Brown rice can be served only if it cooked properly with lots of water. Oatmeal well cooked in plenty of water is very good for Crohn’s and colitis patients, as well. Hot spicy foods tend to irritate the intestinal wall and worsen “heat” condition, and therefore should be discouraged. You should visit a qualified acupuncturist to help you know what types of food is recommended for your condition.