Acupuncture, Reiki And Cupping: Your Guide To Ancient Asian Healing Methods
The ancient Asian healing methods I’ll discuss in today’s article are quite unique and definitely pique the interest of many natural medicine enthusiasts – but should you really try acupuncture, cupping and reiki? Let’s find out.
Have you ever wondered if there’s an alternative to the typical medical practice of prescribing a pill for every single problem you have?
And an even better question – could there be a more effective way to deal with your health issues that doesn’t involve pills?
Well, today I’m going to take you on a quick tour through Asia to show you how people in the Far East solve everything from achy joints to diabetes to bad circulation…
And you can bet that there’s not a single pill involved!
Now, as you’re probably aware, my specialty is nutrition, diet, and herbal healing, most of which come from Asian healing methods that stretch back thousands of years…
But there’s another side of Asian natural medicine, and it seems like not a day goes by without one of my friends asking my professional opinion about these more physical methods.
You’ve almost certainly heard of acupuncture, but it’s only one of many techniques. There’s quite a few out there and I’m going to tell you what I think about some of the most popular ones.
Our journey begins in China with a practice that started more than 2,000 years ago…
On Pins and Needles – A Look at ACUPUNCTURE
Okay, so the thought of acupuncture might leave you a little squeamish – tiny needles are inserted into your body at various strategic points…
With the basic idea that the pressure from the pins will unblock your body’s natural flow of energy.
Now, I’m not going to go too deep (pun intended), but these strategic points are on what are called meridians – key pathways that connect all parts of your body…
And with the blockages removed, acupuncture will give you this wide range of benefits:
- Lower strain on your eyes
- Improve your immunity
- Regulate your digestive system
- Sharpen your mental focus
- And relieve your muscle, joint, and back pain
So, you might wonder – does it work?
And another question – is it worth the pain?
My Verdict for the First of the Asian Healing Methods: Thumbs UP!
My answer for both questions is a resounding YES, and I’ll tell you why…
In my experience, acupuncture does everything it claims, and there’s a reason why it’s one of the cornerstones of all Asian traditional healing techniques.
It’s an effective, ancient technique that is still relevant in our modern times.
Now, about the pain – it’s much less than you might think and many people feel no pain whatsoever.
And for those who do feel pain, it’s quite minimal. Because the needles are extremely small, you might feel a slight prick, but it’s nothing compared to the larger needle of a normal shot. And the pain disappears almost immediately after the needle is removed.
So acupuncture definitely gets my seal of approval.
Moving forward, where do you want to go next?
For our next destination, let’s sail across the sea to nearby Japan, where a much more recent technique has taken hold…
All Hands On Board for REIKI
Now, being a relatively recent healing method (only 100 years old), reiki is much less known than acupuncture…
But that could be rapidly changing…
Reiki’s popularity has exploded in recent years as it’s finally made its way to a Western audience where it’s been embraced by patients that attest to its effectiveness.
Similar to acupuncture, your reiki session is designed to release energy (or qi) blockages, albeit in a less painful and less intrusive way…
Instead of needles, your reiki therapist will use their hands to apply pressure, allowing energy to circulate better and reach all points within your body.
In that sense, reiki is sort of like a mix between of acupuncture and massage sessions.
As for the advantages…
Because it uses the same pressure system, reiki gives you many of the same benefits as acupuncture. However, the focus with this technique is slightly different and intended for:
- A More Positive Mood – Reiki gives you a calmness and mental clarity that helps rid negative thoughts or feelings
- Healing – The main goal of reiki is physical, mental, and emotional healing, which it claims to do through the physical application of gental force.
And again, the big question – does it work?
My Verdict for the Second of the Asian Healing Methods: Thumbs MOSTLY Up
I’ll be honest here – I prefer the mechanism of acupuncture and its long tradition.
At the same time, I’ve had reiki done and there definitely is something to this technique. After finishing a session, there was no doubt in my mind that I felt better, both from a physical and mental perspective…
The feeling was strong enough that I’ve gone back to my local reiki practitioner several times…
And so strong that I’ve started recommending it to people that have a fear of acupuncture needles.
Which means that reiki also gets my seal of approval if you want the positive effects of acupuncture without the pain.
For our last destination, we won’t be traveling in the Far East, but rather the Middle East, to discover a technique that started there but quickly spread to Asian countries…
Whole Lotta CUPPING Going On
This is one that there’s a good chance you haven’t heard of yet, even though it’s used in over 60 countries around the world.
Cupping is a technique that began in Egypt sometime around 3000 B.C., which means it has a history of over 5,000 years. And from there, it spread eastwards through Iran and eventually arriving to China and other Asian countries…
Nowadays, cupping is used extensively in China and is slowly arriving to Western countries…
But what exactly is cupping?
When you go for a cupping session, your therapist will use glass cups that are applied to your skin with suction to improve circulation or energy flow into your back or other areas of your body. There are three types of cupping you can choose from:
- Fire Cupping – A lit cotton ball is used to remove oxygen in the cup before applying it to your body.
- Wet Cupping – An incision is cut into your skin so that the cup draws out blood, toxins, and impurities.
- Dry Cupping – The cup may be warmed, but no direct fire or incisions are used.
And the same question again – does it work?
My Verdict for the Third of the Asian Healing Methods: Very LIMITED Thumbs Up
Based on its history and the ideas behind the ancient technique, I do recommend dry cupping…
It’s a method that’s been used for ages, and I believe there’s little question about its safety and ability to improve circulation.
On the other hand, I am not inclined to recommend fire or wet cupping, simply due to their higher potential for injury. While they may generate positive health benefits, dry cupping would be my preferred option.
And there you have it – three Asian (or mostly Asian) healing techniques that require absolutely, positively…
And that’s certainly a good thing.