FALL IS OFFICIALLY UPON US, and with it? The dreaded cold season. But don’t fret, we at bonberi have amassed plenty of homeopathic remedies and tips to keep you sniffle-free. Here, we consulted with acupuncturist Catherine Cusumano who helped us understand the connection between needlework and our immune system. Heresy you say? Read on before you go reaching for that bottle of NyQuil.
By Catherine Cusumano
As acupuncture is beginning to receive more acknowledgment as a preventative care service, the question of why or how it works comes up more frequently. I have some long term clients who come to me and say, “Everyone in my office is sick except me and I’m sure it’s because I come for acupuncture.” While I love to hear this and I believe it to be true, I started asking myself, Why do I believe it to be true? What is it about acupuncture that has the power to keep people from succumbing to the illness when every around them is?
I have a theory. Well, two theories really. The first is that when people are new to acupuncture it can be a little stressful at first. Often, people don’t know what to expect and even when they do the anticipation of having needles stuck in them makes them a little anxious. Stress can cause the body’s immune system to kick in and begin to fight off any pathogen that was floating around but hadn’t gotten a foothold yet.
Additionally, I have been considering what long term patients have told me and I believe my second idea is more accurate. It’s common that people get sick when they don’t get enough rest. Relaxation is also known to boost the immune system. When people get that 20-30 minutes of “decompression time” that acupuncture provides, their immune system is activated allowing them to fight off illness or disease at the earliest stage more easily. The relaxing effects of acupuncture usually linger for days for most people. They also sleep better and deal with day-to-day stress better. Because they are more relaxed their immune system is working at a more optimal level than when they are stressed and tired.
Catherine Cusumano has been practicing acupuncture since 2004 and treats everything from acid reflux to migraines to insomnia. She received a Master of Science in Acupuncture in New York where she studied Traditional Chine Medicine, Japanese and trigger point release style acupuncture.