Stroke is the #2 killer in America, second only to heart disease. Your chances of having a stroke…and dying of it…increase with age. But all is not lost…the good news is that with diet and lifestyle changes, you can cut your risk of stoke and improve your recovery should you have one. It’s not too late to make changes, even if you’ve already had a stroke. It can help prevent repeat attacks. Prevention is way better than rehabilitation.
The explanation of stroke from an acupuncture energetic perspective is that Heat (inflammation) occurs and builds up in the body. This heat effectively “cooks” the blood, making it more sticky and sludgy, so it doesn’t flow as easily. It then forms a blockage or “stagnation” that interferes with the function of the brain. This thickened blood can clot more easily and may get stuck in a small blood vessel in the brain, cutting off the nourishment to a certain part of the brain. In classical Chinese acupuncture, the Blood is under the auspices of the Heart (Fire) system; the brain is controlled by the Kidney (Water) system. Fire and Water must remain in balance with each other; if Fire overpowers Water, disaster (like stroke) can result. If the blood supply to the brain is cut off, brain cells will die.
I mentioned that inflammation is a big part of the cause of strokes. So where does the inflammation come from? Two major causes of inflammation; diet and dehydration. Dietary causes of inflammation include sugar, grains, and processed foods. You can counter inflammation by eating more veggies, clean pastured fish, eggs and meats, and healthy oils. For more information on inflammation and how to overcome it, go to www.deflame.com. Dehydration comes from not drinking enough water. Ideally, we should consume 1/2 oz of water for every pound of body weight.
Other important lifestyle habits that can decrease your risk of stroke include moderate cardiovascular exercise (like walking, dancing, or taiji), proper rest (including sleep and recreation), and stress management (including meditation, prayer, qi gong, taiji, yoga, arts, music and much more).
Acupuncture is a powerful tool both in preventing and recovering from strokes. It can help relieve stress and turn up the Water frequency, helping to counteract inflammation. After a stroke, acupuncture can help reconnect the wiring between damaged parts of the brain. It does this by stimulating the flow of blood and energy to the injured parts of the brain. Dr. Walker has taken advanced training in the treatment of neurological disorders using acupuncture, and has treated many patients for the aftereffects of the stroke. She even successfully treated her own mother for aphasia (inability to speak) after a stroke.
If you want to find out whether acupuncture can help in your condition, we offer a no-charge 10 minute consult with Dr Walker. Call 828-265-0001 to schedule your consult or first visit.