Could You Be Gluten Sensitive Without Celiac Disease?

Gluten sensitive | Annex-Naturopathic-Clinic-Toronto-Naturopathic-Doctor-in-the-Annex


To eat, or not to eat wheat? That is the question.


The avoidance of gluten continues to be a hot topic in the media.


More and more people are opting for a gluten-free diet. For some people, eliminating gluten from their diet may be essential to not only maintaining the integrity of their gastrointestinal tract, but optimizing their overall health.


Digestion is the cornerstone of good health. If a person's digestive capacity is impaired, many other areas of a person's health can be adversely affected.


Not everyone who has a bad reaction to gluten has celiac disease. Non-celiac gluten sensitivity (NCGS) also negatively affects on the body, but does not produce the same disease process or complications that celiac disease does.


The naturopathic doctors at Annex Naturopathic Clinic are able to assess, diagnose and treat celiac disease and NCGS.


Dr. Luck and Dr. Lee can help determine whether or not you can include gluten in your diet and what treatment needs to be in place to heal the gut.


What is gluten?


Gluten is a protein found in wheat and some other grains including rye and barley.


What is celiac disease?


Celiac disease is an autoimmune condition.


Gluten causes the immune system to destroy intestinal cells. When intestinal cells are destroyed they lose their capacity to absorb nutrients causing chronic diarrhea, nutrient deficiencies and weight loss.


Celiac disease is associated with a much more serious risk profile than NCGS including neurologic dysfunction, osteoporosis, infertility, and other autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis and Hashimoto's thyroiditis.


Why does celiac disease happen?


Genetics plays a strong role in whether or not someone will have celiac disease.


How is celiac disease diagnosed?


Serology (blood) testing for the antibodies against the intestinal tissues (endomysial antibodies (IgA EMA) and tissue transglutaminase antibodies (IgA tTG)).


If the antibodies are more than twice the normal limit, the patient likely has celiac disease.


Duodenal biopsy, tissue samples taken from the small intestine (which can only be ordered by a gastroenterologist), can confirm the serology testing.


These tests will only be accurate if the patient has ingested gluten consistently over the past 6 weeks.



What is non-celiac gluten sensitivity (NCGS)?


NCGS is a reaction to gluten that does not involve the immune system and does not cause intestinal cell destruction. Gastrointestinal symptoms include abdominal pain, bloating, constipation and diarrhea. NCGS can also contribute to joint and muscle pain, skin rash, anemia and depression.


Why does NCGS happen?


The working theory as to the increased prevalence of NCGS is a combination of increased wheat consumption and the hybridized gluten content of wheat- today's wheat contains far more gluten than it's ancient ancestor.


How is NCGS diagnosed?


NCGS is a diagnosis of exclusion.


When celiac disease has been ruled out, there are no signs of malabsorption and the individual has improves on a gluten-free diet, a diagnosis of NCGS can be assumed.


If you are experiencing adverse reactions to gluten it is important to have a thorough work-up.


If you're curious to learn more about this subject or would like to consult with one of our NDs feel free to book a visit or contact us.


Yours in Health,

Dr. Marnie Luck, N.D

Annex Naturopathic Clinic

572 Bloor St W #201, Toronto, ON M6G 1K1

-https://goo.gl/maps/uVRBvcyoUa62





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Best Home Remedies for Poison Ivy

For more natural health and wellness news, visit: goo.gl/zat81U-


By Dr. Mercola
Poison ivy, oak and sumac are closely related plants, and may be found growing in similar environments. In fact, all three grow throughout the U.S. except Hawaii, Alaska and parts of Nevada.1 Poison ivy is found throughout the U.S.; poison sumac is distributed mostly on the East Coast from Maine to Florida; and poison oak is found along the West Coast and the south from Texas to Florida and as far north as Illinois.2
While irritating and uncomfortable, poison ivy is not usually dangerous, unless the oil is aerosolized from burning. Inhaling the fumes can trigger an allergic reaction in your lungs. Nearly three quarters of the population of the U.S. will break out into a rash when exposed to the plant leaves. Only 25 percent appear to be resistant to the contact dermatitis...
[Read More ...]

Get your Vitamin D this Summer to Keep Colds and Flus Away in the Fall and Winter

Get Your Vitamin D | Annex-Naturopathic-Clinic-Toronto-Naturopathic-Doctor-in-the-Annex-June03-01


With summer finally here, you have the next 3 months to stock up on the important essential Sunshine vitamin, otherwise known as Vitamin D.


What Is Vitamin D?


Vitamin D is actually not a vitamin but is a hormone with beneficial effects on the immune system. It is widely known that we are able to synthesize Vitamin D on our own with the help of the wonderful summer sun, but in the dreary fall and winter months, achieving optimal levels of this miracle vitamin is difficult for us living in the Northern Hemisphere.


Vitamin D is commonly known to aid in the absorption of calcium, which leads to optimal bone health and function, but new research demonstrates that this hormone does much more.


Along with calcium regulation, Vitamin D is also a powerful immune and hormone modulator, which makes it useful in treating conditions such as hypertension, cancer, depression (especially seasonal), and prevention of the common cold and flu.


It has been demonstrated that those with low vitamin D levels have a greater risk of catching cold and flu bugs, and with limited amounts of sun exposure during the dark winter months, your levels of D will significantly drop.


Vitamin D helps your body fight off these infections by reinforcing the protective surface barriers of the skin, lungs, and the gastrointestinal tract, preventing unwanted microbes from entering the body through these routes.


This is especially important in those who are most susceptible to infection, such as people with weak lungs, (asthmatics, smokers, etc..) and those with general immune dysfunction, usually stemming from poor diet and lifestyle habits.


Vitamin D also modulates the immune system by activating T-cells, cells which help recognize and promote the destruction of microbes, while decreasing inflammation caused by an over-active immune system.


How Much Vitamin D Should You Take?


So what are adequate amounts of Vitamin D? According to Health Canada, recommended adequate intakes of Vitamin D is set at 200 IU daily (400 600 IU for those >50 years of age).


However, recent research has found that 200 IU/day (even up to 800 IU) is ineffective in achieving adequate levels of vitamin D in the bloodstream. Therefore higher dosages of vitamin D (at least 1000 IU) should be recommended by health care professionals to obtain adequate levels in the blood stream.


While sunlight is one of the best ways of achieving optimal vitamin D levels so stock up this summer as optimal levels are difficult to achieve in the winter months, or if you're stuck in the office all day.


All you need is 10 minutes in the mid-day sun in shorts in a T-shirt (without sunscreen) to get a mighty dose of vitamin D (10 000IU), but make sure to limit your time in the sun without sunblock to prevent skin damage.


For darker skinned individuals, it's more difficult to produce vitamin D through sun exposure alone, therefore vitamin D should be obtained through diet, longer sun exposure (but not too long to avoid skin damage, likely around 15-20 minutes maximum) and/or though supplementation.


Get Your Vitamin D | Annex-Naturopathic-Clinic-Toronto-Naturopathic-Doctor-in-the-Annex-June03-01


Other Sources Of Vitamin D


For the month with low sun exposure, there are various sources of vitamin D you can obtain through diet, such as though fish, eggs and fortified dairy and soy products.


However, it is recommended to also use high quality vitamin D supplement in conjunction with diet, as diet alone may not reach the optimal dosage and/or some of the fortified foods (dairy and soy) may not agree with your digestive system.


This summer, make sure to spend some much-needed time in the sun to optimize your vitamin D levels for the fall and winter season, when sunlight is sparse and darkness prevails. This will keep your immune system strong and protect your body from cold and flus.


Talk to a naturopathic doctor if you're curious about how to supplement vitamin D in the winter. Vitamin D testing is done in October in order to see what your status is going in to the low-light seasons, and a proper dose of vitamin D supplementation can be recommended based on your serum levels to maintain what you obtained in the summer


If you're curious to learn more about this subject or would like to consult with one of our NDs feel free to

book a visit or contact us.


Yours in Health


Dr. Tanya Lee, N.D

Annex Naturopathic Clinic

572 Bloor St W #201, Toronto, ON M6G 1K1

-https://goo.gl/maps/uVRBvcyoUa62





References:



  1. Health Canada [homepage on the Internet]: [updated 2006 June 29; cited 2010 Feb 2]. Available from: http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/fn-an/nutrition/vitamin/vita-d-eng.php

  2. Rucker D, Allan JA, Fick GH, Hanley DA:Vitamin D insufficiency in a population of healthy western Canadians. CMAJ. 166(12): 15171524, 2002

  3. Heaney RP, Davies KM, Chen TC, Holick MF, Barger-Lux MJ: Human serum 25-hydroxycholecalciferol response to extended oral dosing with cholecalciferol. Am. J. Clin. Nutr. 77: 204-210, 2003

  4. Schwalfenberg GK. A review of the critical role of vitamin D in the functioning of the immune system and the clinical implications of vitamin D deficiency. Mol Nutr Food Res. 2010 Sep 7. [Epub ahead of print]

  5. Harris SSVitamin D and African Americans.J Nutr. 2006 Apr;136(4):1126-9.





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Crafty Uses for Carrot Seed Oil

Carrot seed oil is far removed from the ubiquitous orange vegetable and should not be mistaken for the cheaper macerated carrot oil. This humble essential oil is packed with natural healing properties, which have been used since the times of ancient Greeks and Indians. Learn more about carrot seed oil and how to get the most out of this plant oil.



What Is Carrot Seed Oil?



Carrot seed oil is derived from the dried seeds of the wild carrot plant (Daucus carota) of the Apiaceae or Umbelliferae family. Its plant source is an annual or biennial plant with hairy leaves and umbels of white lacy flowers and purple centers. Also popularly called wild Queen Anne's lace, its native origins can be traced back to Egypt, France and India.1 Carrot seed oil has a viscous consistency, a yellowish-brown color2 and a distinct woody, earthy and root-like fragrance.



Uses of Carrot Seed Oil



In traditional Chinese medicine, carrot seed oil has been proven to treat dysentery and to expel worms. But apart from these uses, it is also frequently:




Added into spicy foods and sauces in many Asian cuisines3


Mixed with other oils to infuse a woody note in Oriental and aldehydic perfumes


Used as a massage oil or bath oil to ease muscle pain


Used as a lotion to naturally and effectively tan and moisturize the skin





Composition of Carrot Seed Oil



The main chemical constituents of carrot seed oil include a-pinene, camphene, b-pinene, sabinene, myrcene, y-terpinene, limonene, b-bisabolene, geranyl acetate and carotol.4 It blends well with a wide range of essential oils, whether it's botanical, citrus or spicy oils. These include bergamot, juniper, lavender, lemon, lime, cedarwood and geranium oils.


The oil of the carrot seed primarily contains the well-known pigment carotene, but does not contain vitamins A and E or pro-vitamin A, which are found in the root.5



Benefits of Carrot Seed Oil



Carrot seed oil is perhaps one of the most underappreciated essential oils. But it is known to have antiseptic, carminative, cytophylactic, depurative, diuretic, emmenagogue and vermifuge (antiparasitic) properties.6 Here are just some of the other well-known health benefits of carrot seed oil:7

























Aids in healing abscesses, boils, and other skin disorders

Nourishes, tightens, and rejuvenates skin

Alleviates pain due to menstruation

Helps stimulate appetite

Helps treat ulcers

Improves liver and gall bladder disorder, particularly hepatitis, colitis and enteritis

Assists in stimulating the lymph system

Helps women in breast milk production after childbirth

Helps ease hiccups, colic and flatulence8

Relieves kidney stones and jaundice



Carrot seed oil is also widely used in vapor therapy or aromatherapy as a brilliant stress and anxiety buster and an efficient enhancer of respiratory and digestive functions. Read my article on aromatherapy and learn which essential oils work best for several health concerns you or someone you love could be suffering from.



How to Make Carrot Seed Oil



Carrot seed oil is extracted from the dried seeds through steam distillation, which is most commonly used due to its ability to excellently preserve valuable nutrients. The carrot seeds produce the most essential oil, but other parts of the plant can be used as well. In some cases, the dried seeds are crushed before going through steam distillation.


During this procedure, the botanical material is steamed to stimulate the release of its aromatic molecules. Careful temperature control is crucial - it should be hot enough to make the carrot seed essential oil come out from the plant material, but not too hot to the point of burning the material.



How Does Carrot Seed Oil Work?



To avail yourself of carrot seed oil's positive skin benefits, you can use it topically by applying a few drops of the essential oil on the affected area. Don't forget to mix your carrot seed oil with a with a carrier oil like coconut or olive oil for protection from its potential photosensitization and the other effects of its undiluted strength.


Others suggest diluting three to four drops of carrot seed oil in water and taking it orally at least three times a day to take advantage of its healing properties for respiratory and digestive issues. You should seek your doctor's advice before orally taking carrot seed oil or, in this case, any type of essential oil. This is to prevent undesirable health results.



Is Carrot Seed Oil Safe?



According to "Leung's Encyclopedia of Common Natural Ingredients," carrot seed oil is nontoxic. However, like other essential oils, never ingest carrot seed oil during pregnancy. Carrot seed oil can cause bleeding when taken by pregnant women. This caveat also applies to individuals with a history of epilepsy. If you or someone you know has epilepsy, do not use essential oils in general (especially in aromatherapy), as they can trigger overstimulation, which may lead to more serious adverse reactions.



Side Effects of Carrot Seed Oil



While carrot seed oil itself is said to have few side effects when used properly, its parent plant, the wild carrot, was found to increase risks of sun sensitivity due to its high furanocoumarin content, which has photosensitizing effects. It has also been reported to cause hypersensitivity reactions and occupational dermatitis.9


Do not apply carrot seed oil on your skin without mixing it with a carrier oil like coconut oil, olive oil, sunflower oil or hempseed oil. I also recommend staying indoors or covering parts of your body at least 72 hours after applying it on your skin. Ideally, you should perform a skin test first. Put a drop of carrot seed oil on a small portion of your skin and wait 24 hours. If any sign of skin irritation occurs, discontinue its use immediately.


Carrot seed oil overdose may cause vomiting and convulsions. I suggest you consult a natural holistic practitioner before incorporating carrot seed oil into your treatment protocol to avoid potential side effects.






Top 5 Ways To Improve Your Sleep Quality

Improve your sleep | Annex-Naturopathic-Clinic-Toronto-Naturopathic-Doctor-in-the-Annex


Are you getting enough sleep?


We've all felt the effects of poor sleep- fatigue, decreased cognitive function, craving for carbohydrate foods and caffeine, low motivation and mood.


Let's face it- everything's compromised when we are not sufficiently rested.


Most often, it's the small lifestyle changes that improve your sleep the most.


As naturopaths, the following are our top five recommended ways to help our patients increase the quality of theirsleep.


Top 5 Ways to Improve the Quality and Quantity of Your Sleep


1. Maintain a consistent wake-up and bedtime.


We can help establish a regular circadian rhythm by encouraging a healthy cortisol pattern. When our body is used to winding down at the same time each night our cortisol level drops appropriately. When we rise from bed at the same time each morning our cortisol level spikes to give us energy.


2. Eliminate the use of electronics (mainly anything with a screen) for 1-2 hours before falling asleep.


Many people spend their hours before bed doing work on their laptops, watching Netflix or catching up on social media on their smartphones. These activities can be very stimulating to the brain (and it's stress response). While at the same time, the blue lights coming from the screens themselves decrease the secretion of melatonin which is essential for restorative sleep.


Improve your sleep | Annex-Naturopathic-Clinic-Toronto-Naturopathic-Doctor-in-the-Annex


3. If possible, make your bedroom and electronic free zone.


About 8 hours of your day, or 1/3 of your life, is spent sleeping. The time you spend asleep (where there isn't any need for gadgets) is a great time to reduce exposure to electromagnetic fields- the frequencies/signals that are emitted by our electronics. Additionally, you won't have to lay beside a phone lighting up, buzzing or beeping with notifications.


4. Buy an old school alarm clock.


To respond a common rebuttal for the last point - but my phone is my alarm clock - you can buy a good old simple alarm clock to wake you at a consistent time everyday. Furthermore, if you wake up to check the time- you're not checking it on your phone where you may be tempted to check your notifications.


5. Write out what's on your mind.


Going to bed anxious and cycling through lists of things to do and open loops in your mind can undoubtedly reduce sleep quality and quantity. Getting what's in your head out on paper allows you to rest assured that you won't forget anything and you can look at it the next day when it is a more appropriate time to take action.


Although these recommendations are simple, creating new habits requires time and perseverance. The rewards of these habits, waking up refreshed and having improved health, are worth the effort!



If you're curious to learn more about this subject or would like to consult with one of our NDs feel free tobook a visit or contact us.


Yours in Health


Dr. Marnie Luck, N.D

Annex Naturopathic Clinic

572 Bloor St W #201, Toronto, ON M6G 1K1

-https://goo.gl/maps/uVRBvcyoUa62






To learn additional info on health, wellness, and alternative medicine, please visit us here: Annex Naturopathic

The Negative Effects of High Cortisol Levels

Annex-Naturopathic-Clinic-Toronto-Naturopathic-Doctor-in-the-Annex-June01-01


Cortisol is a commonly known hormone produced in the adrenal gland that sits on top of the kidney. Cortisol follows a daily pattern in which it rises rather rapidly in the first 10-30 minute after waking, increasing energy, then gradually decreases throughout the day so that it is low at night for sleep.


The cycle restarts the following morning.


In addition to being a factor in establishing diurnal rhythm, the production of cortisol is increased when the fight or flight response is triggered. This response is triggered in stressful situations.


What does cortisol do?


Cortisol effects metabolism by increasing blood sugar from the body's stores. It also influences the immune system by preventing the release of substances in the body that cause inflammation.


When individuals are under chronic stress, cortisol can become persistently elevated and lead to symptoms including:


Anxiety, depression, irritability.



  • Elevated cortisol influences enzymes and receptors for neurotransmitters which have effects on mood and emotion.


Carbohydrate, fat and/or salt cravings.



  • Cortisol is one of the hormones that raises blood pressure, it modulates brain regions that stimulate hunger for sodium and energy rich food. High sugar and high fat foods quiet the stress response because they trigger a dopamine release as a way to self-soothe by making us feel temporarily better.


High blood sugar and insulin resistance.



  • Cortisol raises blood sugar by signalling the production of blood sugar by the liver while at the same time opposing the action of insulin. This means that although there is high blood sugar, the body isn't able to use it.


Weight gain, especially in the abdominal region.



  • Cortisol opposes the actions of leptin, the hormone that tells us we are full after eating. At the same time, excess in blood sugaris converted to fat.


High blood pressure.



  • Cortisol triggers increased ingestion and retention of salt.


Annex-Naturopathic-Clinic-Toronto-Naturopathic-Doctor-in-the-Annex-June01-02


Insomnia and sleep disturbances



  • Cortisol can become dysregulated, rising in the evening (10pm second wind and difficulty falling asleep) and failing to spike in the morning (struggle getting up in the morning).


Hormonal imbalances and infertility.



  • Cortisol can inhibit the production of ovarian estrogen and progesterone. It can also decrease the frequency of ovulation.


Irritable bowel syndrome



  • Cortisol can cause decreased intestinal blood flow and altered movement of the gastrointestinal tract which leads to changes in the gut microflora.


If you suffer from any of the above symptoms and have a moderate degree of stress in your life- your cortisol levels may be a contributing factor.


Along with thorough intake, the naturopathic doctors at Annex Naturopathic Clinic use a specialized diagnostic test called an adrenal hormone profile to objectively assess cortisol production and metabolism.


Furthermore, NDs can help restore balance through lifestyle recommendations, herbal medicine and targeted nutritional supplementation.


Related Articles:




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Understanding Your Body's Stress Response System

Annex-Naturopathic-Clinic-Toronto-Naturopathic-Doctor-in-the-Annex-May05-01.jpg


Chronic stress is detrimental to health. Our modern lifestyle is fast paced and dynamic. It can be hard for our bodies to keep up.


Stress is one of the root causes of many health concerns. The naturopathic doctors at Annex Naturopathic Clinic assess their patient's stress and make connections to how it may be affecting other areas of their health.


Stress Response - Stage 1


Let's begin by understanding the stress response.


First we must acknowledge that the human body and its physiology has not changed significantly from that of our ancestors 50 000 years ago. However, the environment that humans live today is drastically different from hunter-gatherers.


To ensure the survival of our species, upon encountering a threat- let's say a bear- our fight or flight response creates a hormone cascade- including adrenaline- that would enable out body to fight the bear or run away as quickly as possible.


This initial response is called the alarm stage.


Stress-Response-Stage1-Annex-Naturopathic-Clinic-Toronto-Naturopathic-Doctor-in-the-Annex.jpg


Stress Response - Stage 2


The second stage of the stress response is the resistance phase.


The body responds to the inflammatory environment created by the alarm stage . At this point, the brain signals to the adrenal glands to increase the production and release of cortisol. Cortisol, a hormone with anti-inflammatory properties (amongst many other actions), acts to quiet the immune response.


Once a certain amount of cortisol is reached in the blood stream, the brain stops singling the adrenal glands to respond, and cortisol production is normalized.


Stress-Respone-Stage2-Annex-Naturopathic-Clinic-Toronto-Naturopathic-Doctor-in-the-Annex.jpg


Stress Response - The Problem


The stress response outlined above is protective and beneficial if activated sporadically.


The problem that we encounter is modern society is that our stress response doesn't know the difference between encountering a bear and being in a high stress work environment.


Deadlines at work, traffic, finances, relationships, overextending ourselves socially, and information overload via technology are repeated and chronic stressors that leave the stress hormone cascades turned on and levels of cortisol and adrenaline higher than appropriate.


Stress-Response-Annex-Naturopathic-Clinic-Toronto-Naturopathic-Doctor-in-the-Annex.jpg


Our bodies are only meant to see surges in these hormones in fleeting glances.


When we are exposed to repeated stressors, too close together our hormones become out of balance (notably, chronically elevated cortisol) and negative health outcomes ensue including altered circadian rhythm, elevated blood sugar, gastrointestinal concerns and altered immune response.


Naturopathic doctors are able assess stress and its effects through specialized testing and comprehensive intake and offer solutions that can make the body more resilient in the face of modern living.


If you're curious to learn more about this subject or would like to consult with one of our NDs feel free to book a visit or contact us.


Yours in Health


Dr. Marnie Luck, N.D

Annex Naturopathic Clinic

572 Bloor St W #201, Toronto, ON M6G 1K1

-https://goo.gl/maps/uVRBvcyoUa62





To get more information about health, wellness, and alternative medicine, please visit us here: downtown toronto naturopathy

DIY Aluminum Cleaner


  • 1/4 cup soap flakes

  • 1/2 cup white vinegar

  • 1/2 cup baking soda

  • 1/2 cup cream of tarter


Combine cream of tartar and baking soda. Add vinegar and mix to form a soft paste. Add soap flakes and transfer to a jar or bottle with a solid lid. Label for future use.


To use, apply with a steel wool pad, then rinse off. Store out of reach of children.


Get your dried, organic herbs, organic essential oils, bulk spices, loose leaf organic teas and aromatherapy supplies at the place where we shop StarWest Botanicals!


Digestive Problems Got you Down? You May have SIBO and therefore a Solution

Digestive Problems Got you Down? You May have SIBO and therefore a SolutionHave you been diagnosed with Irritable Bowel Syndrome? Have your digestive concerns been worked up though ultrasounds, endoscopies and colonoscopies, only to come back completely normal? Have you been told that your digestive problems are just are what they are and are left to just fend for yourself, avoid all the food, and live your life always worrying about how your stomach will react?

There might be an actual name for your nameless digestive problems, and it might just be called Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth (SIBO)

http://citynaturopathic.ca/digestive-problems-you-may-have-sibo/

What Is Acupuncture?

Acupuncture is one of the most popular modalities in the world of natural medicine, so you may have heard of it before. And if you have, you probably have some misconceptions about it as well.

Photos of people undergoing acupuncture might scare you away from the treatment forever, but it’s not as painful as it looks. In fact, most patients report very little or no pain at all. But more on that later.

Many naturopathic doctors in Toronto are trained acupuncturists, including Dr. Lee and Dr. Luck here at Annex Naturopathic. So we put this article together for you to explain more about acupuncture, clear up any misconceptions, and help you know what to expect.

 

First off, does acupuncture hurt?

This is the most common question. It does look painful, doesn’t it? It sounds painful too; getting dozens of tiny needles stuck into you doesn’t seem like an enjoyable experience.

But acupuncture needles are not designed to pierce deeply into your skin the way a hypodermic injection needle does. They do pierce the skin, but on a much more superficial level. On top of that, acupuncture needles are much smaller.

Most people say they feel only a slight pinprick along with a mild tingling sensation, and sometimes a mild, dull ache. Occasionally, a needle may hit a blood vessel or a small nerve, which can cause the pinprick to be more painful, but still quite mild.

 

Where does acupuncture come from?

Acupuncture is one of the oldest medicinal practices from China. Archaeologists have found evidence of what looks like acupuncture needles from as far back as 6000 BCE. We've also found that Otzi, the "Ice Man" who was pulled from a glacier and died around 3300 BCE, had tattoos on some of the meridianal channels used in acupuncture. Otzi was from Europe, so this could mean early Europeans created their own version of acupuncuture!

The earliest confirmed date of what is undoubtedly acupuncture, though, comes from about 100 BCE in The Yellow Emperor's Classic of Internal Medicine. This explains the concepts of the meridianal channels through which qi (energy, or life force) flow.

Europeans first came upon acupuncture in the 17th century, when the East India Company began trading with China and Japan. But it wasn't until 1971, when a member of the US press corps was given acupuncture while in China to help recover from an emergency appendectomy, that acupuncture began to gain popularity in the west.

Today, acupuncture is commonly used to treat a number of different ailments, with new research being done on its effects all the time.

 

What is acupuncture good for?

A study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association in 2012 examined a group of nearly 18,000 patients suffering from back and neck pain, osteoarthritis, chronic headache, or shoulder pain.

Of the different control groups they set up, the one that received acupuncture reported greater relief and less pain than the other control groups. Based on this testing, they concluded that acupuncture is more effective than a placebo and is useful for treating chronic pain.

Other studies have been done to suggest acupuncture can be effective for treating a range of other health issues, including certain eye conditions, headaches, fibromyalgia, asthma, carpal tunnel syndrome, and more.

 

Can acupuncture help you?

If you’re wondering whether acupuncture can help with any health conditions you’re experiencing, contact Annex Naturopathic today. You’ll get a chance to speak with one of our naturopathic doctors who will answer your questions and help you better understand how acupuncture or other naturopathic modalities can help you live a healthier, more vibrant life.

Contact Annex Naturopathic at (647) 624-5800, or come visit us at the clinic at 572 Bloor St W #201, Toronto, ON M6G 1K1