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Acupuncture & Natural Health Solutions Newsletter  Providing Natural Health Care for the Entire Family
Issue #2015-02e
What in the World is Wei Qi?

Wei Qi provides an "immune system-like" barrier that protects the body from harmful pathogenic factors that can cause illness and disease. When we are exposed to bad air, germs, and viruses, our first line of defense, according to Chinese medicine is our Wei Qi barrier.

Over time, Wei Qi can become weakened and unbalanced due to many factors: improper diet, emotional stress, grief, sadness, inherited constitution, smoking, and pollution.  Diet is a huge component of sufficient Wei Qi and your ability to stay healthy during the cold and flu season.

Chapter 18 of the Ling Shu talks about the formation of wei qi as follows :

"Man's qi is retrieved from grain (gu). Grain enters the stomach and (the refined part) is sent to the lung (on its way to) the five zang and six fu, so they can all receive their portion of qi. The clear (qing) part is ying qi, the turbid (zhuo) is wei qi."

This passage establishes the importance of the spleen and stomach (digestive function) and the ingested grain as the starting point for all qi, both ying and wei, and the lung is simply a transfer point for this qi as it moves along to all of the other organs.

This relationship between the spleen and Wei Qi is highlighted in Chapter 36 of the Ling Shu, which describes the role of each of the five zang as follows:

"Among the five zang and six fu, the heart is the sovereign...the lung is the prime minister, the liver is in charge of planning, the spleen is in charge of defending (wei), the kidney is in charge of supporting." This passage designates the spleen as the ruler of defense. 

Wei (Defensive) Qi deficiency is characterized by spontaneous sweating, aversion to wind and cold, increased susceptibility to invasion of external pathogens (viruses, bacteria, fungus), pale face, pale tongue, white tongue coating, and a floating, weak pulse.
When our Wei Qi is down, we become prone to allergies, asthma, colds, flus and even skin problems.

If we ignore the middle burner, we could end up with ineffective therapy when treating wei qi deficiency.  Two formulas that are commonly used to tonify wei qibu zhong yi qi tang and huang qi jian zhong tang, have as their primary emphasis the tonification of the middle burner. Even yu ping feng san includes bai zhu, which tonifies spleen qi.

The most important herb for tonifying wei qi is huang qi, an ingredient in all the above formulas. But this herb also tonifies spleen qi.
Even in acupuncture, point combinations for tonifying wei qi almost always include needles or moxa on St 36 (a common formula is St 36, LI 4, UB 12 and UB 13). From this, we can conclude that there can be no tonification of wei qi without tonification of the middle burner.

Your health and the strength of your immune system depend upon the quality, quantity and balance of Wei Qi that flows within your meridian channels.

Germ Warfare


You never have to wonder when the "cold and flu season" is around the corner. Big Pharma will be sure that you are reminded of its impending arrival no matter where you turn.

When the dreaded season of doom drapes its black curtain over us, whatever you do, don't come within sneezing distance of anybody, don't even think about shaking anyone's hand or otherwise engaging in bodily contact, and NEVER, EVER touch a doorknob, shopping cart, or any other object that might have possibly come into contact with any human at any point during its existence.

Buy into the hype and you'll find yourself locked away in a dark room waiting for the hazmat team to give the "All Clear."

Big Pharma and the medical community at large are depending on you to buy into the hysteria; to leave the fate of your health and well-being up to the questionable workings of chemical-laden pills and shots rather than the innate power that runs your body and the living world around you.


The reality is that germs don't make you sick. Rather, your body's inability to fend off germs and foreign invaders is what results in you succumbing to illness.

Think about it... How is it possible that a family of 5 people living under the same roof can have completely different reactions during flu season?

Assuming that everyone is exposed to the same germs and viruses, if the sickness were attributed completely to the virus, everyone would get sick and exhibit the same reaction and symptoms.

What happens in reality is that one or two family members get ill while the others don't. Clearly the issue is not the germs, but the body's response to them.

Chances are the last time you got sick

  • you were running yourself ragged;
  • missing sleep,
  • eating improperly,
  • slacking on your nutrition,
  • all stressed out from work, s
  • kipping your acupuncture sessions,
  • and neglecting your workouts. 

This is a vicious pattern that many of us fall into and it's one that weakens the body and allows germs to take hold.
Your best defense against the flu, colds, or any other germ-borne illness is not to drug yourself, but to bolster your internal defenses. You stand your best chance of being at your healthiest when you have an optimally functioning nervous system and immune response.

So come in for an acupuncture tune-up, keep your lifestyle habits in good order, and maintain a positive attitude. Do so, and those pesky little germs don't stand a chance!  



Recipe Corner


Herbal Immune System Booster Soup 

 a great cold home remedy 
by John Gallagher,



  • 8 cups (237 ml) water 
  • 1 tablespoon (15 ml) olive oil 
  • 1 onion, diced 
  • 1 bulb garlic (at least 10 cloves), minced 
  • One 1 and half inch (3 and half cm) piece of fresh ginger root, grated 
  • 1 half cups salted chicken broth or beef bone broth 
  • 5 pieces sliced dried Astragalus Root (not the powder) (available online or at the office)
  • 2 cups fresh, sliced shiitake mushrooms 
  • 1 large reishi mushroom 
  • cayenne powder, if desired 
  • miso


  1. Bring water to boil in large pot. 
  2. Heat olive oil, saut´┐Ż garlic, onions, and ginger until soft and aromatic. 
  3. Add contents of skillet to water. 
  4. Add broth, shiitake, astragalus, and reishi. Simmer covered for two hours. 
  5. Remove from heat, allow to sit for two more hours. 
  6. Remove astragalus and reishi mushrooms. 
  7. Reheat. Add salt and pepper to taste, and cayenne powder if desired, just enough to bring out a light sweat.   
  8. Add a bit of miso, if desired.

Now, you can make variations. You can cut out the reishi if you cannot find it. You can buy dried reishi mushrooms online. Shiitake mushrooms are amazing for the immune system and are available at most supermarkets. Astragalus, as well as the mushrooms, are available at Asian groceries (as Huang qi), BUT you can also buy astragalus root (not the powder) online or at the office. Mountain Rose Herbs is a high quality, reputable herb company. 

Keep a big jar of astragalus root by the stove. Throw a few pieces in practically every soup and tea you make. It is the main herb to think about for "herbal immune system nourishment." 

About the Author - John Gallagher John Gallagher, L.Ac. is founder of LearningHerbs and currently serves as Director of Mystery. He created the Herbal Remedy Kit and HerbMentor, and produced all the products they offer. John is a five element acupuncturist, home herbalist, musician, husband and parent.  


by Stephen Buhner

This herbal immune system recipe was reprinted in one of MY FAVORITE HERB BOOKS called Herbal Antibiotics, by Stephen Buhner. If you want to thoroughly read about all the herbs related to cold and flu cure along with many others, this is the book for you. It is a short, simple book that is concise and amazing. In this recipe, Stephen takes Andrew Weil's recipe in Eight Weeks to Optimum Health and tweaks it a bit. 

Herbal Antibotics
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The information contained within the newsletter is only used to educate and inform. This newsletter is not a substitute for the advice of a licensed and registered health care provider. Seek prompt attention for emergencies. Consult a health care provider for specific health concerns, and before starting a diet, cleanse or exercise routine.
Monthly Acupuncture Column Featured in SW Florida's Health & Wellness Magazine 

Toni Eatros, AP,

Acupuncture Physician, 
is the  featured acupuncture columnist in the popular SW Florida's Health & Wellness Magazine.
Be sure to check out February's issue, on stands now, which included Answers of your Questions About Auricular Medicine (Ear Acupuncture).
 about the benefits of the fertility - how acupuncture can help.
Acupressure Points


Rubbing acupuncture points with your finger for 30 - 60 seconds can stimulate and promote the circulation of Qi within your own body, restoring health and well-being.



Acupressure Points to Boost Immunity

It is that time of year:

 flu season.

And it seems to be particularly common these past few weeks: sick kids home from school, missed work days, long lines outside of public health clinics.


So how to stay healthy this winter? 

There are a multitude of things you can do to boost your immune system and ready your body to fight off pathogens, 

these include


-getting enough sleep 


-exercising regularly


-drinking water


  -getting regular acupuncture


-supplementing with Chinese Herbal Medicine




You can also give yourself acupressure at these immune-boosting points - I'd suggest making it a regular part of your daily routine. 

Stimulate the point with firm downward (inward) pressure for at least 5 minutes, morning and evening.


 Note that this point is intended to boost immunity BEFORE you get sick - it isn't necessarily appropriate once you feel cold symptoms starting.

Triple Warmer 5 (TW5) - Wai Guan 





This acupuncture point is located on the back of the forearm, about 2-1/2 finger breadths up from the wrist crease.


To find, place your middle three fingers of your opposite hand over the wrist, so that that edge of your ring finger lies on top of the crease of the wrist.


 Your pointer finger lies at the level of TW5.


The point is located between the two bones of the forearm in the muscle. 


Triple Warmer 5 (TW5) specifically strengthens the body's Wei Qi, which is the outer-most Qi that fights off external pathogens like viruses and bacteria.


Acupressure Research


Acupuncture Out performs Drugs in the Treatment of Headaches


A recent study compounding on prior research shows that acupuncture combined with herbs has proven to be more effective at treating vascular headaches than drugs.


The previous research into the efficacy of acupuncture as a treatment for migraines concluded that acupuncture
is comparable to modern drugs for treatment of migraines.


For this study the researchers increased the strength of the acupuncture treatment by adding herbal medicine as an adjunct to the acupuncture.


The acupuncture and herbal medicine out performed Nimodipine, a drug prescribed for frequent headaches.


If you suffer from frequent headaches and drugs just don't seem to be providing the relief you're looking for then consult an acupuncturist about a treatment that has proven to be clinically more effective than drugs.


For the detail article, click the link. 




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