THE SUMMER MONTHS are always halcyon. The Fourth is
over – and I hope you had a wonderful time – and many of
you will be going on vacation. Since July celebrates the birth
of the nation and August the harvest, I thought it might not
be inappropriate to discuss how many American women find
themselves unable to give birth and how acupuncture may be
able to help them.
CAUSES OF FEMALE INFERTILITY : The
most serious causes of female infertility need not be
discussed here – chemotherapy, structural problems like a
bifurcated uterus, STDs, etc. There is another list that is as
common but not as well understood because those in control of
this culture do not want to hear it: 1) there is too much
birth control medication being dispensed and taken over too
long a time; 2) marriage is delayed far too long; 3) the
quality of the egg and sperm, including motility are
decreasing – chemical pollution probably accounts for only
30-40% of that. So the unrecognized cause of the problem is
the society we have constructed. In nature’s scheme of
things, a young woman reaches her first menstruation somewhere
around thirteen. (Currently some girls are starting the
process as young as eight; that is probably being caused by
the amount of synthetic hormones being ingested in their
food.) If we use thirteen as a benchmark, then the girl would
come to marriage somewhere between seventeen and twenty,
having had less than one hundred cycles. If she married at
twenty, she had her first child at twenty-one, and had several
more children after that. In the society that modern man has
created, many women are in their thirties before they decide
to have a child and then discover that nature, having been
repressed and thwarted for over a decade, has decided not to
cooperate. There have been too many cycles; the system is
depleted. The first step to reversing this is to make sure
that you are not suffering from some problem like a bifurcated
uterus and that the prospective father has a high enough sperm
If the last two conditions are
met, the acupuncturist can then move on to find out if the
woman is "too cold." In Chinese terms, this means
that the system has gone dormant. Once the hormonal system,
the kidneys, and the qi are balanced, pregnancy should result.
I am pleased to say that quite a few babies have been born
after their mothers came to the clinic for acupuncture and
herbs. The mother can cooperate by counting eight, ten,
twelve, and fourteen days after the end of her period and
encouraging intercourse at that time. The chances of a
pregnancy resulting at this point are higher.
It can be a long process. One
mother came every week for six months before the first
pregnancy resulted. Our congratulations to the Thomas family
for the birth of twin boys a few weeks ago.
HERBS CAN HELP: The
common herbs which promote fertility are:
Achyranthes (Niu Xi), Angelica sinensis (Dong
quai) [Dong quai treats infertility, susceptibility to
miscarriage, and ovarian function disorders. Toxicity from
high doses is rare], Curculigo (Cen Mao), Cuscuta
(Tu Si Tze), Epimedium macrantum (Wei Nin San), Gloclidion
(Fu pen tsu). Glycyrrhiza glabra (Licorice root) [tonifier
for the uterus and a producer of estrogenic activity], Ligusticum
(Chuan chong), Lycium (Quo chee tsu), Paeoniae Alba
(Pai Shao) – White Peony, Plantago (Che chien tze), Rehmannia
(Shu di), Rubus idaeus (Red Raspberry Leaf) [has
normalizing effects on the uterus], Schizandra (Wu wei
tze), Viburnum opulis (Cramp Bark) [same family as
Black Haw; will stop threatened miscarriage], Viburnum
prunifolium (Black Haw –helps recover and maintain
uterine function; will halt the course of a threatened
miscarriage), Zingiber officinalis (Ginger) [Ginger
tones of most parts of the female reproductive system.]
MISCARRIAGE : It
can be a dreaded word. It is caused by 1) a defect in the
fertilized egg, 2) a uterine defect, 3) leutinize deficiency,
4) loose cervix, 5) abnormal development of the baby between
six and twelve weeks, and 6) failure of the fertilized egg to
embed in the uterine wall.
HERBS TO PREVENT MISCARRIAGE : Pao
wan (a compound of 13 herbs) , Angelica, Peony Root, Bitter
Orange, Magnolia Bark, Astragalus, Fritillary Seed, Dodder
Seed (Cuscuta), and Lovage (Ligusticum).
You will need:
1 cup of vodka. There is no
need to use an expensive brand.
½ cup of brandy. Again, you don’t have to use an expensive
3 tablespoons of finely chopped dried Angelica root.*
1 tablespoon chopped almonds
4 dried apricots, chopped
1/8 teaspoon ground allspice
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon**
1 tsp anise extract
1/8 tsp ground coriander
1 cup sugar
1 ½ cup water
1 drop green food coloring
1 drop yellow food coloring.
Combine vodka, brandy,
angelica, almonds, apricots, allspice, cinnamon, anise
extract, and coriander in a one-quart jar with a tight-fitting
lid. Cover and let stand in a cool dark place for two weeks,
shaking frequently to prevent clumping.
Use a fine mesh strainer to strain out solids. Discard.
Make a simple syrup of 1 cup sugar and 1 ½ cup water. Bring
to a boil over medium high heat, stirring frequently to
prevent scorching. When clear, remove from the heat and let
stand until just warm. Add food colorings and then syrup to
vodka mixture. Cover and age for at least one month.
Filter into final container.
Will keep indefinitely as long as the cap or cork is tight.
*available at any Chinese herb store or at Ranch 99 Market on
**the better your spices are, the better this will be. I
recommend Vietnamese cinnamon from either Penzey’s Spices or
King Arthur Flour.