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Article: Self-Empowerment


Taking responsibility for your own health care with Chinese herbal self-help tools involves making a huge leap, but it is not into the unknown. This ancient art of Eastern herbal medicine provides more than ample evidence of huge success for thousands of years. The process of implementation requires a bit of thought, and it’s not that hard. Really.



In the beginning, and that was a long time ago, there was a system known as the eight branches. There is at least one Oriental medical school that I know of that has used this system for the name of the school (Eight Branches Institute). The eight branches refer to a primary manifestation of the intermingling of “Heaven” and “Earth,” and this yields a hierarchy of medical modalities that are placed in order from relative highest to lowest. While all of the eight are “high” healing arts as far as the Taoist science is concerned, number one on the list is considered better or more complete than number eight.


Last on this heavenly list is acupuncture. Surprised? It is lower on the list than herbal medicine (#7), Feng Shui (#6), massage (#4), nutrition (#3), and meditation (#1). The Taoist creators of this system placed great importance on medical systems that are self-empowering and arranged the order based on the degree of this quality that these modalities possess. Acupuncture is clearly the most done-to-you art on the list. The system believes that there will be more success health-wise if and when patients are empowered and participate in their own health care and treatment.


This is the polar opposite of the basic strategy of Westernized medicine. In our culture, medicine is definitely done to you. It’s even expected, and, perhaps, not valued unless done to us in this manner. We don’t expect, or in some cases want, any leeway in our medicine dosage. We want and expect specifics. Dr. Marcus Welby knows best. Our very health itself is a function of somebody else.


The result is that the power over health care in this country has rested in the hands of a well-established association of doctors, hospital administrators, and business people. For the patients, it is a passive process where medicine is something done to them, or for them or, at its best, with them. Now, you are being offered Another Way.


All of the OHCO herbal formulas offer two sets of directions. Taking the herbs the “Basic Way” is like having a maintenance formula. You take the herbs gradually over a length of time that varies from three days to months. Gradual use produces a deep level of constitutional change.


The second set of directions is called “Another Way,” and that can be translated to “as needed.” That means that if you have a sudden onset problem, you might have to take the herbs in a more concentrated way for a more dramatic change. Using the formula Stomach Chi as an example, I think you can appreciate the difference between an episode of food poisoning (Another Way) and an ongoing weakness in the digestive system (Basic Way). Sometimes, you will feel the need to combine the two methods. An example might be taking OHCO-Flow for ongoing stiffness and soreness in the neck and shoulder area (Basic Way) and need a couple of extra doses before and after your first few softball practices.


Please call the OHCO office with your questions so that we can assist you in getting the most out of these Chinese herbal self-help tools. Self-empowerment is truly a revolutionary kind of health care reform.

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