Spring Newsletter

Dear Friends and Colleagues: 
It’s that time of year when the days are getting get longer and the weather warmer. The budding trees and blooming flowers of Spring remind us that we too are in a period of growth and development. We at Turning Point remind our friends that a positive embrace of the Spring season includes taking care of ourselves on many different levels. 

In this issue:

  1. Allergies – Western and Eastern Perspectives
  2. Food Choices – Seasonal, Organic and More
  3. Practice Updates

Allergies – Western and Eastern Perspectives
Western Perspective
Biomedicine classifies allergies as a hyperactivity of the immune cells. Common allergens include pollen, mold and animal dander, and people who have allergies demonstrate a heightened response to these materials. Symptoms can range from mild (rashes, itchy eyes, congestion) to severe (anaphylaxis). Allergies are primarily viewed as an inherited trait, similar to eye color or height, so chances are if your mother, father or even grandparents suffered from “hay fever,” than you may too. 
Western treatments for seasonal allergies are designed to suppress the body’s capacity to respond to the allergens. Most medicine works to suppress histamine, the primary chemical that is involved with allergies. Allergy medicine doesn’t change the relationship of a body to allergens, it simply dampens the intensity of the response. As with most pharmaceuticals, over time the body will build up a tolerance to the histamine blockers and your dosage will need to be increased. Recently, there has been growing attention paid to the positive role that a healthy, primarily vegetarian, diet can play in helping to lessen the intensity of seasonal allergy attacks. 
Eastern Perspective
In Asian medicine, allergies are viewed as fatigue of the lung system. Typically, the lung system becomes fatigued and over-worked in response to environmental toxicity or stressors. When the lung system is weary, it becomes hyper-reactive and can no longer adequately respond properly to these issues. It loses its ability to discern between negative anitgens and other, harmless, substances and it over-reacts to everything. Allergy attacks are actually is the result of a historical toxin in the body that has now come to the forefront. 
In seasonal allergy treatment, we try to commence treatment at earliest sign that the season has started to shift. Acupuncture and herbs support the body in reducing its toxic burden by improving elimination. We can strengthen the lung system much more easily before it starts to fail and we work to gird against any weakness. 
Summary and Strategy
Allergies can be viewed, in both the Western and Eastern perspective, as an accumulation of negative elements in our body. Instead of addressing the symptoms and/or carrier (histamine), we recommend that you address the root of the problem as early as possible with preventative rather than reactive measures. Being aware of your body’s needs and reactions to the seasonal changes can help you embrace optimal health on all levels. Vitamin C, Allergiplex, quercetin and the practice of regular nasal lavage can all help boost your immune system. 

Food Choices - Seasonal, Organic and More
Spring is a new beginning – the time of year to rise early with the sun, take brisk walks, and cleanse the body. According to traditional Chinese medicine, spring is the time of the liver and, unfortunately, the emotion most closely tied to the liver is anger. A good way to harmonize the liver is to eat a soothing, natural diet that will allow you to reduce stress and tension. You can start by eating light meals, increasing your intake of young plants, fresh greens, sprouts, and cereal grasses. You should also try to limit your intake of highly processed and salty foods. 
Indulge yourself this season by eating healthy complex carbohydrates such as grains, legumes, and seeds. These natural treats are nutritious and balancing. Because Spring is the earliest harvest of the year, many of the traditional vegetables are also available in "baby" categories. Eating a regular combination of the following foods can help to decongest your liver and help bring your body into harmony with the season: 
Vegetables – baby beets, baby carrots, baby peas, fennel, baby squash, baby bok choy 
Fruits – apple, apricot, cherry, date, fig 
Nuts & Seeds – Almond, chestnut, coconut, sesame seed, sunflower seed, walnut 

In planning your spring meals, you may also need to choose between organic and conventional food options. Whether we purchase organic or conventional food products has an impact on both our health and the land in which the food is grown. The terms “organic” or “conventional” refer to how farmers grow and process food, and as profits get higher, the lines between what is organic and what is not get muddier. Unfortunately, we consumers can't know for certain about food's authenticity unless we grow it ourselves. Read TP staff member Hector Mendez's essay about this important topic HERE

Practice Updates
Turning Point is proud to announce the start of Musical Mondays, an innovative group auricular acupuncture experience. During this session, each person will receive an ear acupuncture balancing treatment while seated with complimentary herbal tea and relaxing classical music performed live. Please join us for the free "dress rehearsal" on Monday, April 6, 7:00 - 8:00 pm please visit the Events page for more information. 

The FLT Champs group will be meeting on alternate Thursdays for the Spring session. FLT Champs share a common goal of weight reduction or maintenance through the practice of healthy eating habits, regular exercise and traditional Chinese medicine. The next meeting will be held on Thursday, April 9th at 7:30pm and we'll be discussing how to renew our commitment to the practices of healthy living. 

Turning Point is on Facebook! If you’re an active Facebooker, we’d love to get you in our group. It’s a great way to show your Turning Point pride and who knows – there may even be some special events in the works for group members! Check out the page to sign up now! Turning Point Facebook Page

When celebrating the Spring holidays, birthdays or other special events, keep in mind that Turning Point offers gift certificates for acupuncture, Reiki or massage. Email us. Call (212. 489. 5038) or visit our offices (1841 Broadway) to share a gift of healing. 

We look forward to supporting you toward your fullest enjoyment of the season in optimum emotional, physical and spiritual health.

Joint Pain/Arthritis

  Holiday self-care

     Summer/ Dampness      Spring /Allergies     

  Seasonal Affective Disorder  

Health Offerings from the Turning Point Staff

  • Reiki: information about the Reiki style practice at Turning Point by Lourdes Guzman
  • Turning Point West: the Colorado website of Turning Point Founder, Naomi Rabinowitz, MD LAc.
  • Dancerhips.com: Dr. Rabinowitz's website about Total Hip Replacement surgery
  • Organic or Conventional: An essay on food choices by Hector Mendez

Oriental Medicine References and Related Medical Sites

Oriental Medicine Research and Essays

Resources (by field/topic)

Charitable Organizations

Turning Point makes every effort to make our world a better place by supporting the good works of these groups and people. Check out the links and join us in supporting these groups if you feel so moved.