What is Traditional

Chinese Medicine?

With Dr. Adrienne Chan

What is Traditional Chinese Medicine? With Dr. Adrienne Chan

by | Nov 12, 2019 | 0 comments

Interview Transcript

Omsgurl

“Hi, I am Evi also known as OMsGurl, from OurOm2hands and the motto is “holistic, sustainable, abundant intentions and actions.” Today we are focused on holistic health, with my really good friend Adrienne. Adrienne Chan is a TCM doctor, so a traditional Chinese medicine doctor. I am really honored to be able to interview her here today. She went to school first to do her BSc (bachelor of science) in Guelph from 2000-2004. Then came here to Vancouver, BC in 2004-2009 to do her traditional Chinese medicine school. Where she of course learned acupuncture the first four years, and the fifth year she became a TCM doctor. She has been practicing since 2008/2009. So for the last 11 yrs she has had the pleasure of helping over 400 people, including over a handful of celebrities. This is Adrienne. How are you?”

Dr. Chan

“Good”

OMsgurl

“Good! So I just wanted for some people, because some people have been to a traditional Chinese medicine doctor, some people have not. Can you kind of go into, what is traditional Chinese medicine? How does it approach holistic health from the root cause?”

Dr. Chan

“Ok so in Chinese medicine we don’t just treat the symptoms we like to get to the root cause, so the problems actually go away, and they don’t come back. Also work with balances in the body. We want to balance your internal systems so your body can heal itself.”

OMsGurl

“Thanks for that, so um so then can you go a little bit into what or how the meridians play a role in TCM? Cuz that is sort of unique to other systems?!”

Dr. Chan

“Ya so we believe the energy or chi flows through the channels called meridians that link our whole body together. So if there is a blockage in this energy flow than there is problems and there will be discomfort and so the whole process of Chinese Medicine is to get the chi flowing. So there is no blockage, there are no issues.”

OMsGurl

“wow, ok. How does acupuncture and traditional Chinese medicinal herbs relieve some of the blocks or open up the pathways?

Dr. Chan

“ Ya so herbs, are kind of like eating a healthy diet. Herbs are a bit stronger than healthy food, so it helps balance the internal system so then for example if the problem is skin issues; if you balance the inside it reflects on the outside: on good skin, good health.”

OMsGurl

“Which everyone wants nice skin, haha.”

Dr. Chan

“yea”

OMsGurl

“So is that one of the common reasons people come to you? ..Is skin issues, is to have glowing skin?”

Dr. Chan

“It is one of the common things. Most common things are stress, that’s actually my favourite thing to treat.”

OMsGurl

“OK cool!”

Dr. Chan

“Pain, fertility, acne, insomnia, hay fever, and weightloss.”

OMsGurl

“wow, i like that! Oh yea so you do the B shots also for weight loss? Is that what all traditional medicine doctors do for weight loss, or is that unique to your practice?”

Dr. Chan

“ya that’s where my nutrition aspect comes in. If people just want some quick vitamins; and it gives them more energy, helps with depression, weight loss, helps your eyelashes grow longer.”

OMsGurl

“And after birth too, it helps sometimes?”

Dr. Chan

“Ya I did it after birth, and it just helped me reduce bloating, and helped my hair grow back, skin and energy. I was really tired.”

OMsGurl

“And it helps give you more energy?”

Dr. Chan

“Ya”

OMsGurl

“Ya and ok, and what originally, well I kind of know, but for everyone else, what brought you to want to be a traditional Chinese
medicine doctor as opposed to going a different path: allopathic/western medicine, or being a naturopath. What really kind of drove you?”

Dr. Chan

“So when I was little, I had menstrual problems, my mom brought me to a Chinese medicine doctor it helped. So I had first hand experience of the benefits of Chinese Medicine. I also liked how it actually resolved the issue, instead of masking the symptoms. Ya.”

OMsGurl

“So, when people come to you, and you end up helping with their acne or stress or fertility or those kinds of things, do you still have recurring patients, or? What would they come to you for? Or stress is reoccurring, no matter what there is still the outside sources?”

Dr. Chan

“Ya so chinese medicine is preventative, so like diet and exercise. You don’t just exercise when you have an issue, or eat well when don’t feel well, it’s preventative. So some people actually schedule every 3 weeks for the whole year. I see a lot of younger people come in. Which really excites me, because they are more aware of self care, and being preventative. So that is really exciting!”

OMsGurl

“Ya that is exciting! Is that one of the demographics: is young people?”

Dr. Chan

“Ya younger people, they don’t have major issues, a lot of it is stress with their job.”

OMsGurl

“or school?”

Dr. Chan

“Ya exactly, students as well.”

OMsGurl

“Ya, and what about the relationship of the gut? Cuz I know as a nutritionist perspective 80% of the immune system is in the gut. As far as I understand, but I have not studied Traditional Chinese medicine, but I always ask you a million questions. I think the derivative of that, was from Traditional Chinese medicine, or Ayurvedic medicine where that focus or the attention is on the gut?”

Dr. Chan

“Yes in Chinese medicine we believe there is this digestive fire from our middle burner. We want to keep that fire going. Otherwise we would feel imbalanced or disharmony in the body. That is why you always want to eat really clean not too cold and not too hot. You want to balance, so that things work optimally. Otherwise you feel sluggish, mental clarity won’t be very good.”

OMsGurl

Ok so I know you’ve told me I need to eat warm, cool or neutral foods, but are some people naturally more cold; so then they would need to eat more spicy foods? And hot isn’t necessarily hot as in warm soup but it’s hot as in, like turmeric is hot, and like what’s cold, bananas are cold?”

Dr. Chan

“Ya bananas, cucumbers, ya we focus on the energetic qualities of food. And everybody has different constitutions so cold salads are not good for everyone, and hot soups and hot spicy food is not good for everyone. So if your on the hot constitutional you want to cool the body down. The goal is to have balance; neutral. So if your too hot; you need cold food. If your cold you need hot.”

OMsGurl

“So is that why some people’s constitution is hot so that why for them personally eating a raw food diet may be good for them? Where for some people eating vegan, raw; and for the constitution it may be too cold?”

Dr. Chan

“Exactly. Ya, Ya.”

OMsGurl

“Ok, cool, I like that! And what about are their any other organs like the kidneys that are kind of like secondary or also really important in traditional Chinese medicine? Or the spleen?”

Dr. Chan

“Yes and certain foods also help certain organs. So for example if your focusing on fertility you want to: the kidneys are responsible for fertility so we suggest to eat black coloured foods: black beans, black sesame seeds.”

OMsGurl

“Goji berries?”

Dr. Chan

“yes goji berries help the kidneys. So we look for patterns in Chinese Medicine, so for example apples: green apples are better for your liver, where red apples are better for the heart. So we look for patterns, and colours and match them”

OMsGurl

“Cool, I like that. And so what’s been the most changing part of your career path? Have you noticed since the beginning when you first started treating patients or clients to now, have you noticed you had to change your approach at all, or have you learned a lot from your clients? So then I don’t know if you have had to do things differently, like even how you blend herbs, or?”

Dr. Chan

“Ya actually my protocols, and my questions are a little bit quicker, and my diagnostic skills. But I have noticed people are a bit more educated now. It use to be just for headaches, and back pain. That is what people knew acupuncture was good for. But now people are aware that Oh I have anxiety and mental health; can help with that. More preventative and that is the focus.”

OMsGurl

“And do you find then, with the anxiety and mental clarity; that is kind of the mind part of body/mind/spirit: the holistic part. So do you find it really does help the whole; in treating the mind, body, spirit do the herbs too?”

Dr. Chan

“yes it is all connected, cuz if you are: if you have insomnia for example, your probably overthinking at night, or your too hot constitution: so everything is connected. If your not balanced, you’ll just be down in one way or another.

OMsGurl

“So that is where life style can be important?”

Dr. Chan

“mhm”

OMsGurl

“For some people more exercise, for some people exercise less?”

Dr. Chan

“Right right.”

OMsGurl

“And has there been something that has been the most exciting? I know you mentioned before that you really felt like with stressing; treating stress that that really excites you? What about it is it that excites you, is there a certain moment? Obviously you can’t talk about the person, or client but just in general that you saw the most transformation, that really makes you really love your job? Cuz I know you love your job.”

Dr. Chan

“I feel it is the connection with people, and how they feel excited for their appointments and they always want to come and they always feel better walking out. I feel.”

OMsGurl

“It’s transformative.”

Dr. Chan

“Ya i can see it in their face right after the treatment, and just how they look forward to it. Their self care, their hour to themselves. It is the connection i think that is the key.”

OMsGurl

“Can all traditional chinese medicine doctors diagnose, to see what foods, or if someone is hot or cold constitutions.”

Dr. Chan

“Right we are trained to do what is called tongue and pulse diagnosis. So we look at the tongue; the colour the shape, the size, the coding. We see even if you don’t speak english very well, we can tell from your tongue and pulse what to do.”

OMsGurl

“Ya”

Dr. Chan

“And that connects to the meridians?”

OMsGurl

“Right! So what would be your advice to someone who has never been to a TCM doctor, either for preventative or if they have some major gut issues or endocrine system or how does someone find the best fit for them?”

Dr. Chan

“Ya just keep an open mind, the more relaxed you are the more effective it is. You will feel a connection with the practitioner. There might be instances where you just, that person is not right for you. There is lots of practitioners now that you can just choose from, that you can find your way through to feel comfortable with someone, to feel open and relaxed.

OMsgurl

“I guess there’s also a lot of reviews now.”

Dr. Chan

“Ya there are google reviews etc.”

OMsgurl

“Oh well thank you so much for the interview, and thank you to you. This video screen was a little bit whatever but it’s the first.”

Dr. Chan

“The first interview”

OMsgurl

“Totally, it’s the first interview so I really hope you enjoyed it, thank you so much for joining me have a great day. (peace sign)”

Dr. Chan

“Bye”

Nutritional Benefits

Turmeric

Turmeric comes from the Curcuma longa plant, which grows in India and other Southeast Asian countries. It is a member of the ginger family. The dried root of the Curcuma longa plant; distinctive yellow powder, giving it the name golden spice. It Provides strong anti-inflammatory antioxidants (carotenoids, flavonoids, lycopene, anthocyanin and polyphenols) that fight free radical damage. It aids in disease prevention, by reducing the risk for cardiovascular diseases, neurological conditions, depression and/or cancer. It supports gut health and therefore enhances the overall immune system. It provides “prebiotics” that help feed probiotics.It provides live microbial cultures, also called probiotic bacteria. Reducing pathogenic bacteria and microbes.

Banana

They are 76% water and are packed with vitamins such as vitamins C and B6 and minerals such as potassium, copper, and manganese. This high water/nutrient ratio makes them a great electrolyte food perfect for busy moms, workout enthusiasts, and people on the go. Bananas additionally contain high levels of fructooligosaccharides (FOS) which along with insulin helps to promote nutrient absorption and assimilation. Bananas support the natural acidophilus bacteria in the bowel which helps promote a healthy and functional digestive tract as well as keep the immune system healthy and strong. Bananas can prevent ulcers by strengthening the surface cells of the stomach lining which helps to create a thicker barrier against digestive acid and pepsin-the two main causes of ulcers. Bananas are also an excellent food for athletes as they can help replenish energy and revitalize the body instantly.

Coconut Cream

Coconut cream differs from coconut milk in that it contains less water and more coconut, so it has a thicker, richer texture. Its ratio is 1 part water to 4 parts coconut, while the milk's ratio is 1 part water to 1 part coconut. Is packed with vitamins C, E, B1, B3, B5, and B6 as well as iron, selenium, sodium, calcium, magnesium and phosphorus. These vitamins and minerals are excellent for supporting beautiful glowing skin, thicker and longer hair and nails.

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