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Complementary Corner

The Dragonís Way

Renee Lehman

(1/2016) In China, the dragon is a magical being. The Chinese dragon is able to breathe fire, summon wind and call for rain, fly into the clouds and hide at the bottom of the sea. Along with these abilities, the dragon signifies power, strength, and good luck. Unlike castle-burning dragons of Western stories, the Chinese Dragon is a benevolent symbol in Chinese culture. It is a symbol of miraculous things and represents the collective wisdom of Chinese culture, encompassing the art of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), art and architecture, calligraphy, music, martial arts and Feng Shui (pronounced fĎng shway).

The Dragonís Way ģ is a wellness program that was developed in the 1990ís by Nan Lu, OMD, the founding director of the Traditional Chinese Medicine World Foundation and the Tao of Healing in New York City (read his biography at www.tcmworld.org); and has helped thousands of people lose weight, improve numerous health conditions, and discover their own healing abilities. It is deeply rooted in TCM, the oldest continuously practiced medical system in the world (more than five thousand years). The Dragonís Way ģ program is one of wisdom, where you learn how to reconnect to your own powerful healing ability.

As I have discussed in previous articles, TCM deals with balancing the flow of the natural vital energy, or Qi (pronounced "chee"), which flows through all living things. This Qi flows through the body on specific pathways called Meridians, and is essential for health.

When the Qi is balanced, moving smoothly, and in sufficient quality and quantity, health and wellness are promoted. When the Qi is unbalanced or blocked in any way, disease or disease, will occur. This disease may show up as symptoms on a physical, mental/emotional, or spiritual level. It is important to realize that these symptoms are only the end result of an imbalance, and not the illness itself.

Weight gain and feeling chronically "stressed out" are examples of signs/symptoms from the body, mind, and spirit that there is something out of balance within us, and needs to be addressed. It is important to realize that TCM does not "fix" the signs/symptoms. TCM is focused on bringing the whole person into harmony, and getting to the root of the problem. So, the underlying root cause (energetic cause) of weight gain or "stress" is addressed. Therefore, if you resolve the root problem (body out of balance), the symptom (excess weight) will be resolved! The Dragonís Way ģ program helps you to address the root problem of your symptoms.

The Dragonís Way program is a six-week weight and stress-management program that helps you to learn self-healing tools to bring the body into balance and harmony, to cultivate Qi, and to tap into the bodyís innate healing ability.

The Dragonís Way ģ program is not about food restrictions, appetite suppression, or vigorous exercise. It is about understanding the miraculous complexity and delicacy of the body and the way it truly works, about how the organs should operate in harmony, and how Qi powers all its functions. This program provides a real ownerís manual for the body. The main components and principles of the program are Wu Ming Meridian Therapy Qigong, an Eating for Healing Plan, Herbal Supplements, and learning how your body works from the TCM perspective so that you can apply practical lifestyle changes and unique stress release techniques drawn from TCM healing practices.

The Wu Ming Meridian Therapy Qigong is an ancient energy practice of ten simple movements that can increase energy, open energy blocks, and prevent energy from stagnating. TCM uses qigong as a way to open the door to healing (therefore, getting to the root cause) and allow the body's organ systems to work in harmony. This qigong can help you deal with stress, lose or maintain weight, and increase your energy because it reawakens your bodyís own natural healing ability.

The Eating for Healing Plan chooses foods for their ability to heal and build your energy. Food is not looked at as an enemy; it is viewed as an ally. This is not a DIET! It is a way to use food to help heal the root cause of weight and stress issues (the bodyís organs not working in harmony).

The Herbal Supplements are a combination of herbs that are ancient TCM formulations. They work in harmony with your body and have been safely used in China for thousands of years. Also, Dr. Lu has used these formulations with thousands of people for many years in both his private practice and in this program. The herbs are not stimulants or appetite suppressants. They help strengthen and rebalance your internal organ systems. The herbs recommended in this program can help boost your bodyís healing ability.

Based on the TCM Principles, one learns to listen to what your body wants to eat, when to sleep, and how to function. On the deepest level, the body has wisdom far beyond anything we generally acknowledge. The body is constantly communicating with us through "signals/symptoms." Recognize that these signals/messages, are early warning signs of the body/mind/spirit being out of balance. Therefore, by learning to see your body through TCM principles, you have the opportunity to open lines of communication within your own body, and become healthier.

A recent study by the TCM World Foundation found that The Dragonís Way program may relieve several physical and emotional health issues. The research data confirmed clinical observations of The Dragonís Wayís effectiveness in lowering stress and increasing overall wellness for a diverse population, with a majority of subjects reporting significant relief from both physical and psychological symptoms, including anxiety and depression, over a two-year period.

Data collected from 102 subjects (88 women and 14 men), before and after each Dragonís Way program showed that 80 percent of participants experienced a reduction or complete disappearance of chronic physical and emotional symptoms associated with stress, including anxiety, fatigue, muscle tension, back pain, forgetfulness, nervousness, shortness of breath, insomnia, abdominal distention, depression and headache. In addition, 90 percent of subjects reported improved anxiety and depressive symptoms.

Based on these findings, TCM World Foundation is planning a second study on the impact of the Dragonís Way program using standard psychological instruments to measure emotional and physical changes in subjects. A third study will measure biochemical changes affected by this unique holistic intervention.

The following are just a few comments from participants of my previous Dragonís Way classes: "My anxiety has decreased dramatically." "My A1C (average blood sugar level over a 2 Ė 3 month time period) dropped from 9 to 7." "I now have regular bowel movements, and I, in my whole life, have never been regular!" "My back pain is gone." "Iíve lost 6 pounds and feel great!"

As people become aware of the negative impact of stress on their health and well-being, finding ways to reduce these effects are of great importance. The Dragonís Way may be one of the solutions! If you are interested in getting to the root of any weight or stress-management issues, please call Renee Lehman at the number given below. The next Dragonís Way program will start on January 20 in Gettysburg.

Make the Dragonís Way Your Way!

Renee Lehman is a licensed acupuncturist and physical therapist with over 25 years of health care experience. Her office is located at 249B York Street in Gettysburg. She can be reached at 717-752-5728.

Read other article on well being by Renee Lehman