the Acupuncture Works
Spring 2019

Needle Notes
Spring - The Wood Element - Gall Bladder and Liver Meridians

WOOD is the energy of spring.
It gives us the power of birth and renewal.
It enables us to move forward with vision and determination.

While it certainly doesn't look or feel like spring right in this moment as I write this, the undeniable hints of the season are beginning to emerge. The light is beginning to change; Day Light Savings Time began last weekend. Many of my patients have looked at me somewhat questioningly, in the last few weeks, as I've asked if they are noticing the coming of spring! And, I have insisted that the changes are here if we pay close enough attention. The longer hours of daylight have certainly increased and the birds have started to return. A cardinal was singing in a nearby tree the other day as I walked down a sidewalk in town. Some, including myself, are starting to wake up earlier, naturally. As the Yang, upward rising energy advances, be aware of how you feel differently. Do you may have more energy? Are you waking earlier in the morning and not able to fall back to sleep? Do you have the urge to get up and move more? Like a flower that will push its way through a crack in a sidewalk, we are poised to begin the upward movement out of the depths of winter and into the vibrant spring.

Here in the West, spring officially begins on March 21st, when the days and nights are exactly the same—the Spring Equinox. In the East, the Chinese feel that, energetically, spring begins with the Chinese New Year, in February, when the light begins its return, and the dormant forces under the frozen ground are called to life again. In both systems the basic energy remains the same: new beginnings and a fresh start.

Acupuncture Point of the Season

Gallbladder 34 - Yang Mound Spring

This is the Earth Point on the gallbladder meridian. It is found in a depression anterior and inferior to the head of the fibula. This point is used to treat f ullness in the chest and ribs. Other symptoms include: a bitter taste in the mouth, sighing, urinary incontinence, constipation, headache, swelling of the mouth, tongue, throat, head or face and disorders of the sinews.
Problems Associated With Imbalances in the Wood Element

  • Muscle tension, prone to have tendon and ligament injuries
  • Sciatica (radiating pain from lower back into buttocks and down the leg)
  • Insomnia and other sleep issues
  • Headaches, especially migraines
  • Irritability and frustration
  • Blurred vision and floaters
  • Menstrual irregularities, PMS, fibroids
  • Digestive disturbances, heartburn (GERD), irritable bowel syndrome, ulcers
  • High blood pressure, with tendency toward atherosclerosis
How to Keep Healthy and Joyful in Spring

  • Move: The Liver needs movement and so do you; so get outside and take long walks in nature, observe the changes going on all around you, and invite change in. Join an exercise or yoga class.
  • Get Organized: Go through your home, office, garage and barn. Get rid of stuff you donʼt need; have a garage sale or make a donation. This opens space for new possibilities in your life.
  • Start a New Food Plan: Eliminate foods that stress the Liver, such as fried or fatty foods, sugar, white flour and foods with preservatives, additives and coloring
  • “Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.” Michael Pollan, In Defense of Food: An Eater's Manifesto
Seasonal Recipe - Crunchy Fennel Salad with Lemon Dressing

1 large carrot
1 medium fennel bulb
2 tablespoons, fine, feathery leaves from center of fennel bulb
1/2 small jicama, a small daikon or 1/4 pound white radishes

Lemon Dressing

1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
1 teaspoon umeboshi vinegar
Pinch of sea salt

6 radichio or red cabbage leaves
1/4 pound of your favorite olives for garnish

  1. Peel the carrot, only if the skin is dark or bitter. Quarter it lengthwise, then cut each length into 1/4" chunks. Place in a large salad bowl.
  2. Remove any imperfect or discolored parts of the fennel bulb and discard the rough top stalks. Mince 1 tablespoon of the very fine leaves from the center of the bulb. Cut the fennel into small pieces, about the size of the carrots. Add to the salad bowl.
  3. Peel the jicama or radish and cut into small chunks. Add to the salad bowl.
  4. To make the dressing: Combine all the dressing ingredients in a small bowl. Pour over the vegetables and toss gently. Set aside for 30 minutes. Serve in a cup shaped piece of raddichio or cabbage leaf, garnished with olives, or arrange the salad on a large platter and encircle with the leaves.

Adapted from The Natural Gourmet , Annemarie Colbin
Free Solo

This movie seems to be the perfect manifestation of our tag line, If You Can Imagine It, You Can Create It!

From award-winning documentary filmmaker E. Chai Vasarhelyi and world-renowned photographer and mountaineer Jimmy Chin, comes FREE SOLO, a stunning, intimate and unflinching portrait of free soloist climber Alex Honnold, as he prepares to achieve his lifelong dream: climbing the face of the world’s most famous rock... the 3,200ft El Capitan in Yosemite National Park… without a rope.
Be as Flexible as You Can Be - in Body and Mind!
 | the Acupuncture Works | 802-748-2020 |
Amy W. Wheeler, L.Ac. - Barry Fudim, L.Ac.
offices in St. Johnsbury, VT and Hanover, NH