Acupuncture and Herb Clinic

Seasonal Notes



Solstice literally means “Sun Stop.” No kidding! Sometimes we wonder where the sun is in southern Oregon! Actually, “solstice” refers to the position of the sun on the horizon. It seems to linger. But as the sun pulls the Earth back into its orbit, the position of the sun begins to change to our perspective, and daylight hours slowly increase.

The most beautiful stars are in the winter sky. Turning off outside lights helps reveal their true splendor. In fact, I rarely use my outside lights, and then only briefly. Indoors, I turn to soft lamps or candles as evening draws into itself, which allows my body to start producing melatonin in preparation for sleep. Although we cannot truly hibernate as some animals do, we ought to be sleeping longer hours during the winter.

Wuhan Corona Virus 

There is a saying in China: “We will eat anything with legs, except a table.” For a very long time, China has been overcrowded. Trying to feed such a massive human population led to the consumption of many different types of animals. It was this that caused their recent virus outbreak.

Captive wild animals and domestic animals slated for slaughter and consumption by people are believed to have been the source of this strain of corona virus. In 2003, a similar situation caused the SARS epidemic in China: overcrowded, dirty conditions for “livestock,” coupled with the poor treatment of the animals. In our own country, this maltreatment occurs on a regular basis in stockyards and giant chickenhouses. Just take a drive on I5 in California, and you can smell the unhealthy accumulation of filth these animals live in.

A virus thrives in a warm, moist environment but can tolerate cold conditions as well. When a virus enters an animal’s nostrils, it encounters other viruses which are living in that animal. The genetic materials of the virus strains combine to form a new virus which can now infect other animals. The common cold, for example, was transmitted from horses to humans. (It is another kind of corona virus.)

In the same manner, as a virus breeds in human bodies, it combines with virus strains already living in those humans. Generally, the weakest individuals become sick first. As time progresses, however, the virus becomes “smarter,” which means its genetic material evolves. This is what is happening in China. We are actively observing that, given time and the right conditions, what starts out with symptoms like the common cold can develop into lumbar pneumonia or other severe respiratory ailments.

Preventing Infection

  • Stop smoking and vaping, both tobacco and cannabis.
  • Avoid crowded locations (stores, etc.).
  • Eat lots of fresh vegetables. However, avoid cold, raw foods, which compromise the immune system. AVOID SUGAR, EXCESS CARBS, EXCESS DAIRY.
  • Include fresh pears in your diet often. Pears are very good for the lungs.
  • Eat one shitake mushroom daily. Save the stems in a cotton bag in the freezer for stock, along with bones and vegetable scraps.
  • Wear a scarf around your neck! This protects your defensive wei chi (yang).
  • Get enough rest.
  • Engage in moderate exercise/work.
  • Do not store your food in plastic. Plastic breaks down into microplastic particles, which irritate and weaken the lungs.

Seasonal Remedies

Consider herbs and/or nutritional supplements to support your immune system. Here are some items to keep on hand during cold and flu season. All are available at our clinic.

  • Congaplex
  • Gan Mao Ling
  • Cold and Flu Shoo Brew Tea (made in our clinic)
  • In case of cough: cough drops or cough syrup

If you do get sick, don’t panic. There are many ways to get well. Because our clinic is only open 2.5 days per week, think about alternatives for the days we are closed. Both Acupuncture and Chinese Medicinal Herbs are very effective for respiratory ailments. BUT, IF YOUR CONDITION IS SEVERE—GO TO THE HOSPITAL. They are great with this type of care, and our hospital is a very loving place to be when you are sick.

The care I have received at Ráven's clinic has made an almost unbearable situation bearable and allowed me to hold a job and continue on with my life. She and her staff work with you at any time you need them. They are amazing.

    Frances Cole