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Welcome

Welcome to the website for Jim Chialtas, L.Ac., and Laurel Acupuncture Clinic of Functional Medicine, located in San Diego.

Click on the tabs above to learn more about what Functional Medicine is, and about many of the health concerns I specialize in. Or scroll down for my blog. You might find it helpful to use the labels in the lower right column to find topics that interest you.

In addition to seeing clients privately in my clinic, I also offer many of the same services remotely to US residents. Please feel free to contact me to set up a consultation or appointment. Thank you!

8/13/09

Human Sexuality: A TCM Perspective

The Traditional Chinese Medical (TCM) approach to sexual function lends a fascinating perspective on many of the issues facing us today. There are certainly plenty of different problems surrounding sex and reproduction, and a lot of different ways of looking at and treating the problem at hand. Though TCM describes and treats disharmonies in a very different way than we are used to in the mainstream, it can have dramatic benefits when used correctly. I hope through this short article to describe a couple of ways that we can look at sexual dysfunction and offer a few tips on how to strengthen this part of your life naturally.

When looking at any condition in the body the Traditional Chinese approach is to look for disharmony or imbalance in one or more energetic systems. TCM not only considers the problem area, but the entire body qualifying it as a true Holistic modality. But when it comes to anything relating to the reproductive system we generally look towards the kidney energetic system. By now you should be well informed about the concept of Qi flowing through our bodies. Indeed the manipulation of Qi is how acupuncture does what it does. But more specifically a type of Kidney Qi or Jing is where we want to focus our attention here.

Jing is the energy that propels us through life. It blossoms during puberty and wanes in our older age. When our Jing is all used up, so are we. It is natural aging so to speak. It is quite natural when talking about sexual function that some of these energies will weaken as we age. But what about younger people out there who are experiencing declines in sexual energy? What about the ever growing number of young couples who are having trouble conceiving? And what if you are just not happy having good sex over for you in your later years? How does the Traditional Chinese approach address these problems? The first thing to do is to recognize the stressors.

There are some really quick ways of using up Kidney Qi or Jing. The first of which is inadequate nutrition and rest. Both of these are an ever increasing problem in our culture. Our food supply is ever diminishing in nutritional quality, and we are pushing ourselves harder all the time. Our culture's idea of rest is watching television or playing video games. This is not true rest as the body requires. Add to that our addiction to stimulants and sugar and I have detailed a scenario that will gradually tap the Qi of the Kidneys and may lead to a decline in sexual health. The rock star lifestyle just isn't sustainable... nor the life of a couch potato for that matter!

The bottom line here is that you get what you get at birth when it comes to kidney Qi. You cannot build more, but only chip away at your reserves. In order to preserve kidney Qi it is essential that you support a healthy lifestyle to manage your daily Qi needs. If the daily stuff falls short you have no choice than to tap into your reserves which will hinder your sexual energies among other aspects of a healthy life.

The kidney energetic system is only one way to look at sexual dysfunction, and usually relates low function symptoms like low libido, poor erectile function in men, premature ejaculation and low fertility in both sexes. But other disharmonies can of course be involved. For example there could be what we call damp heat conditions which would be indicative of many types of STD's. There could also be blood deficiency or blood stagnation which could affect fertility in women, lubrication, menstrual cycles, etc. Indeed, there are a lot of ways to assess the underlying patterns leading to compromised sexual energy. It is important to sort out which disharmony you may have and address it directly.

The good news is that acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine as a whole can be very effective in helping with many of the conditions I have mentioned. There are some very powerful herbal remedies, and good old acupuncture is always there to help urge your body to thrive. Regaining proper balance within the system is key to enjoying a happy and healthy sex life (and of course an eager and willing partner helps too!). I hope that you will consider acupuncture as a first approach over the more drastic alternatives out there in the medical world. And if you are looking for an understanding, non-judgmental, and truly caring acupuncturist I'm your man. Rest assured I will take the best care of you that I can.

Please do not hesitate to call with your questions or concerns whatever they may be.