The Rise in East Asian Medicine in Healthcare

The Rise in East Asian Medicine in Healthcare

It’s the 21st century and more people are turning towards medicine that is over 5,000 years old in the form of East Asian medicine also known as Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). This form of medicine encompasses therapies such as acupuncture, cupping, gua sha, moxibustion, and herbal medicine.

So why is TCM gaining increasing popularity in recent years? Is it because Western medicine has failed us? There’s a greater need and desire to utilize a more natural approach, that doesn’t involve numerous negative side effects. While East Asian medicine has spent thousands of years developing and refining its approach to treating people, the more recent advancements of biomedicine are relatively young and still under development.

In Western medicine, the approach involves understanding the specific biological responses of how the body functions and responds to various forms of treatment. In the development of biomedicine, various drugs and treatments have been discovered to have certain effects on the body without explanation. As a result, you have medications that are prescribed for off-label use, such as antidepressant medications like amitriptyline and trazodone, that are used to help people sleep. The medication known as Chantix is used to help stop smoking without knowing how the biological mechanisms work. Western medicine can’t fully explain all the biological effects of TCM, which has resulted in some skepticism while promoting research.

As TCM has proven to be effective in helping treat people, Western medicine has adopted the various TCM therapies, often with different names. Western medicine implements dry needling, myofascial release, Graston technique, myofascial decompression, and nutritional supplements. Dry needling uses the same type of needles, points, and some of the principles of acupuncture without all the theories developed over the centuries as acupuncture. The down side to dry needling is that it’s often a course requiring about a hundred hours of training versus over the three thousand hours that licensed acupuncturists receive over the course of about 4 years along with the completion of in-depth board exams. Myofascial release done with specialized tools and the Graston technique utilize the same techniques as gua sha, just using different style tools and without the same theories and extensive training that acupuncturists receive. Supplements or nutritional therapies make use of individual herbs and vitamins that have specific effects on parts of a person’s physiology, used in a similar manner as medications.  Chinese herbal medicine utilizes herbal formulas that have been developed over centuries where all the herbs work synergistically to have an effect to treat the whole person, while addressing the underlying condition without a multitude of adverse effects of the body.

There is a considerable difference of how Western medicine and East Asian medicine view and treat people. When it comes to treating people, Western medicine looks at a fraction of the puzzle.  This is seen in drugs that affect specific receptors and not addressing the other problems that are connected and even cause adverse side effects requiring additional medications. When even adopting TCM, biomedicine doesn’t fully understand it and uses pieces that they feel that they can explain and deem beneficial. East Asian medicine looks at the entire person. The explanations in TCM are philosophical in nature but provide explanations to certain connections and responses in the human body that biomedicine doesn’t understand. The principles and concepts of East Asian medicine can be addressed with a scientific mindset that accepts the information in terms of a scientific theory. While TCM can’t be fully explained by science, it’s a medicine that has withstood the test of time over thousands of years.  There are explanations in TCM that connect various symptoms and processes that is not fully understood by science. Some herbs are used in the development of medications, biomedicine doesn’t connect the side effects of the medications where it makes sense according to TCM.

If TCM is so great, then why did biomedicine develop? There is a place for both medicines. It’s a matter of knowing when and how to use each properly. If there is an infection, it’s important to utilize proper antibiotics instead of allowing the infection to spread and cause more harm. Pain doesn’t always have to be managed with addictive medications. Acupuncture is well known and accepted in the Western medical community to help alleviate pain. The additional benefit of East Asian medicine is that it gets to the root of the problem instead of masking the symptoms. Acupuncture and Herbal medicine can readily strengthen the immune system. It is effective in preventing the onset and decreasing the duration and severity of a cold. The benefit of the rising use of East Asian medicine is that people can integrate the different medicines as needed with the goal of achieving optimal health and wellbeing. TCM can be used to treat a multitude of conditions, while also being used as a natural form of preventative medicine.

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Are you serious about fixing your health?

Are you serious about fixing your health?

We tell ourselves so many lies about wanting to feel better and be healthier. Instead of sounding like a broken record, do something about it. 

What about your health do you want to change? Do you want to lose weight? Do you want to quit smoking? Do you want to stop living in constant pain? Do you want to get your digestion under control? Do you want to be less anxious? Do you want to be happier and less stressed? Do you want to have a restful night’s sleep?

Next determine what changes need to be made and what you need to implement so you can improve your health. It could be starting to exercise, changes in diet, drinking more water, going to bed earlier, etc. Getting help from a healthcare professional can help you get on your path to better health.

Figure out what needs to be done then create a plan. Don’t make it over complicated, so it’s easier to stick with it. Eating healthy a few days, exercising a couple times, or doing anything just a few times isn’t going to yield results, but it can be a start. 

With exceptions such as trauma, most health issues don’t occur overnight. Adverse effects on our health usually occur over time. Subsequently, improvements on our health occur over time as well. Stop expecting a quick fix. Let me repeat that. Stop expecting a quick fix.

For many people, conventional treatments don’t help to resolve health problems. Some people have adverse effects from conventional treatments or want to implement a more natural approach. Acupuncture is a great way to improve one’s health. It doesn’t just address signs and symptoms but helps to address an individual’s constitution and gets to the root cause of health problems. 

When receiving treatments from a licensed acupuncturist, the treatments build upon each other and have a cumulative effect. Conventional medical treatments can be implemented over years, yielding no results. Regular acupuncture treatments can be effective where conventional treatments may have not helped. They can even support conventional treatments and therapies as well. Often people start feeling the effects of acupuncture within the first few treatments, but it can take time. Listen to your licensed acupuncturist and follow the course of treatments. Implement the recommendations and try the herbal formulas prescribed. When conventional treatments have continuously not helped, why would you expect immediate results from acupuncture? Give it time. Support the treatments by following recommendations.

If you are serious about fixing your health, stop talking about it. Instead, do something about it. Turn your words into actions. Put in the time and effort. Celebrate the steps along the way. Give it time. Look at the progress from where you started to where you are now. Understand that there may be setbacks along the way. Don’t let it stop you if you really want to do something about your health. 

So, are you really serious about fixing your health?

Stop Ignoring Your Health

Stop Ignoring Your Health

When you put off caring for your health, you eventually will be forced to deal with it. When you put off caring for your health, you eventually will be forced to deal with it. Yes, the same sentence was repeated twice and is not a typo. It is so important to take care of your health instead of putting it off or ignoring it.

Our health is so important because it affects us every day. Too often people take their health for granted. Instead of treating illness, support your wellness. Do what you can when you can to maintain your wellness before it’s too late. Health problems arise because something is wrong. Don’t ignore health problems either. It will eventually catch up to you. 

You have one guarantee in life, you are stuck with the body you were born into and will have to live with it for the rest of your life. Invest in your health because it’s the best investment that you will ever make. It’s not always a matter of being able to afford good health but time and effort. Financials can be an issue. That is another discussion. Even the best health insurance and all the money in the world can’t just buy good health. Too often people are happy to purchase items instead of spending money on their health. Which is more important stuff or good health? Investments in health include exercising, eating healthy, getting enough sleep, drinking plenty of water, acupuncture treatments, and making time for self-care. Not everything that can contribute positively to health costs money, and sometimes you need to spend money on goods and services that help maintain your health.

It may seem easier to be unhealthy, but the reality is that it’s harder. When you don’t have energy, aren’t feeling well, or are experiencing pain because you neglected your health, everyday tasks are more difficult. It may be harder to enjoy that family vacation. Getting through the workday can be challenging. Health issues can interfere with enjoying time with family and friends.

Acupuncture treatments are a great way to address health issues and maintain your wellness. Acupuncturists use treatments to address the individual and not just the presenting signs and symptoms. It gets to the root of health problems and even resolves other health issues along with the presenting health problems. A treatment can be an hour out of your week to relax and give time for your body to be nourished and heal. It can be a financial investment for some. Acupuncture is great for preventative care to help maintain a person’s health.

Treating illnesses as they no longer become manageable can be a greater financial strain.  Stop ignoring your health. Make the investment in your health. It’s one of the greatest forms of investments you can make. When you feel healthy, you can focus on more positive things and enjoy your life more. 

Happy Helping to Be Healthy 

Happy Helping to Be Healthy 

Happiness leads to healthiness. The Dalia Lama said, “Happiness is the highest form of health.”  He was right, if you think about happiness doesn’t just affect our emotional health but our physical health as well. 

Being happy has a positive impact on one’s health. When we are happier, we eat better, are more active, and sleep better. Think about it. When people are upset, they may eat their sorrows away with something unhealthy or have no appetite to eat at all. If someone is unhappy, it can be an excuse to lie in bed or lounge on the couch streaming movies instead of being active. It’s common for people to lose sleep when they’re stressed or unhappy about something. Being happy affects all these aspects that play a role in our health. 

Happiness is good for the heart because people engage in healthier habits, which help to lower blood pressure and reduce excess body fat. When we are happy, we are less stressed, and our immune system is stronger. When people are happier, they feel less pain. There are a multitude of health benefits from being happy.

Feeling happy doesn’t just always come easy. Sometimes, people don’t even realize that they’re being negative and aren’t truly happy. There is no one key to happiness but multiple factors that can affect it. Breaking negative habits and developing positive habits that contribute to happiness involve a matter of self-reflection and being consistent working on developing healthy habits while making appropriate changes.

A way to help increase happiness, you can start thinking about the different types of happiness including joy, love, gratitude, optimism, excitement, and contentment. What are the different things that make you feel each one? What interferes with feeling happy? What are some things you need to let go of or change? 

Not every emotion is happy. You need to work through the negative feelings and process them in healthy ways. Practice focusing on the positive daily. That can include listing 3-5 things you’re grateful for each day to feel gratitude. It could be a matter of focusing on the positive parts in unfavorable and bad situations to develop optimism. Find and engage in the things that bring you joy. Build healthy relationships, set boundaries to protect yourself, and end things with those who are toxic. 

Also, do things specifically for your health. Exercise can help to release endorphins. An acupuncture treatment from a licensed acupuncturist is a great way to relax. It helps to treat your health concerns, while addressing your underlying constitution. People often feel healthier and happier from routine acupuncture treatments. 

Let yourself be happy and do what you can to improve and maintain your health. Radiate health and happiness. 

Food for Thought: Ginger

Food for Thought: Ginger

Many Chinese herbs are also foods. One such herb is ginger, which can be used in cooking as well as in teas. Ginger is considered warm in nature.  Different parts of ginger as well as different forms of ginger are considered different herbs in Chinese medicine with medicinal properties. 

Sheng Jiang is fresh ginger. Used in the initial stages of a cold, it can help clear the pathogen. Fresh ginger is good for the lungs and can help with some coughs as well as resolve phlegm. Ginger is good for digestion, alleviates nausea and vomiting. The detoxifying properties help with food poisoning, resolving toxicity, and reducing side effects of other herbs in herbal formulas. 

Sheng Jiang Pi is fresh ginger peel. Like fresh ginger, it aids in digestion, good for alleviating nausea and vomiting. Fresh ginger peel has the added function of promoting urination, which helps in reducing edema. 

Sheng Jiang Zhi is ginger juice. It helps to stop vomiting and alleviate nausea as well. Ginger juice helps to resolve phlegm for coughs with profuse sputum. 

Gan Jiang is dried ginger. It helps to resolve colds at the initial stages. Dried ginger is also good for the lungs and helps to transform phlegm for productive coughs with white sputum. The additional property of dried ginger is that it helps to stop bleeding in cases of chronic, pale bleeding accompanied by cold limbs. 

Ginger is used in many herbal formulas because it aids in digestion so the formula can be absorbed and has the ability to resolve toxicity of other herbs. The properties of ginger used in herbal formula make it a great addition to use when cooking or enjoy as a tea. Due to Ginger’s warm nature it’s beneficial to use in juices or smoothies that can be harsh on the digestive system because they tend to be cold in nature. The properties of ginger to support digestion, make it a good addition when cooking. 

Give up What’s Making You Sick

Give up What’s Making You Sick

Hippocrates was a Greek physician, who is known as the father of modern medicine. He is quoted for saying: “Before you heal someone, ask him if he’s willing to give up the things that make him sick.”

This question speaks volumes, because it is such an important question that people should ask themselves when they want to be healthier and heal their bodies. Often people want to feel better but aren’t willing to give up the things impacting their health. Some people aren’t willing to do things that could help their health as well. You would think it would be easier, but it’s not for many people. 

When you are not willing to give up the things that are essentially making you feel sick, you need to ask yourself why. The thing making someone sick could be addictive, a form of comfort, a means of connecting with others, or something else. Maybe the symptoms are not that severe. Some people identify themselves with their health issues and don’t feel comfortable being healthy. Giving up something that makes you sick could seem harder than it really is. 

Then, you need to consider is how is the thing you should give up impacting your health. Make a pro and con list, so you can determine how it is affecting you. If you are unwilling to give up what makes you sick, then you really don’t want to heal. When you really want to feel better, you should be willing to give it a try. Sometimes it’s a matter of baby steps. Other times you may need to give it up cold turkey. It may be making a change or incorporating something into your routine. Remind yourself daily how this is affecting your health and what you don’t like about feeling that way. 

Your health impacts your daily life. It affects your relationships with others, if you can work, whether you can enjoy your free time, how you go about your day, and so much more. Wouldn’t it feel better to have energy instead of constantly feeling like you need a nap? Wouldn’t it feel better to move, sit, or lie down comfortably without being in constant pain? Wouldn’t it feel better to function like a normal person? You need to be honest with yourself. Stop with the excuses and determine what you need to do to feel better.

Are the excuses worth being unhealthy? It’s up to you decide what you are willing to do. Maybe instead of making excuses to health recommendations, give them a try. It’s not easy to be healthy, but it’s a whole lot harder to be unhealthy. There are so many more negative ramifications in your daily life when you are unhealthy. 

So, are you willing to give up what’s making you sick? Are you willing to do what it takes to feel better?

Success in Health is Progress Over Time

Success in Health is Progress Over Time

When it comes to our health, it is easy to doubt the progress that we have made. It could be recovery from an injury, weight loss, range of motion, level of pain, anxiety, depression, or something else impacting our health. It’s easy to get stuck as one deals with it on a daily basis.

Instead of measuring success each day, compare where you began and how far you have come. Progress takes time. It’s helpful to celebrate the steps along the way. Give yourself time. Except for cases such as trauma, most health issues didn’t happen overnight. Usually, it takes time for serious health issues to develop. That’s why it’s important to be patient. 

Both the body and mind need time to heal. Even a physical health issue can affect us mentally and emotionally. It could be frustrating, discouraging, infuriating, or some other feeling that impacts us. There is a mind body connection. Work through the negative emotions that arise then work on focusing on the positive. 

Acupuncture from a licensed acupuncturist is great, as acupuncture works on the body and mind. It allows the body to relax, as the acupuncture treatment not only addresses the symptoms but the entire body. Rest and relaxation are important parts of the healing process. Acupuncture is great for helping a person relax. Often, acupuncture can help resolve other health issues as it addresses a person’s constitution. Acupuncture treatments are designs to treat the person not just their symptoms. Each treatment builds upon the next, that’s why routine, regular treatments are more effective when addressing health problems. While some biomedical treatments may take years with little to no success, acupuncture tends to yield results with consistent treatments.

Healing the body is a matter of progress. Be willing to put in the time, energy, and work. Do what you can to contribute to your own health. Give it time and be patient. The progress over time is well worth feeling happier and healthier.

Finding Balance 

Finding Balance 

In life, there seems to be a constant struggle to find balance. It’s not a matter of balancing a couple things but numerous things. Balancing can include work, family, friends, health, self-care, chores, downtime, and so much more. It’s frustrating as there’s not enough hours in the day, not enough energy to do it all, and unexpected surprises both good and bad. 

Finding and working on balance involves coming to terms with what is important, figuring out what to let go, deciding how time is being wasted, and determining what needs to be added. Yes, adding things to the mix. It’s not that we don’t have enough going on but often it’s too easy to neglect ourselves. When we take better care of ourselves then it becomes easier to do the things that need to be accomplished and care for others who need us. Then it’s a matter of readjusting as needed because inevitably life changes and throws us curveballs on occasion. 

Establish what is truly important. Some things take priority because they are basic needs. Most must work to support themselves and even their families. Other things are wants such as spending more time with loved ones or going out more often. 

Of the things that require your attention, sometimes there are things we can let go over. It could be hiring help or turning responsibility of some chore to a family member. Even changing how you go about grocery shopping by ordering your groceries curbside or having certain household essentials on subscription orders can save some time. We don’t have to do it all. It’s exhausting. Maybe your spouse or kid could vacuum or invest in a robotic vacuum cleaner. Even if the job isn’t done perfectly in that instance, it’s better than not being done at all. 

Determine how are you wasting your time that doesn’t serve you. It could be scrolling through social media, watching you videos online, streaming a show on some streaming service, or working on something that could potentially wait. It doesn’t mean you can relax, but part of that time could be used on something more productive. Stream a favorite show while exercising or cooking. You could do something else instead. Sometimes it helps to accomplish tasks before sitting down after getting home because it can be more difficult to get up after finally stopping to relax.

Finally, it’s important to figure out what you’re neglecting. Commonly people neglect their health. Give yourself an hour a day. An hour comprises about 4% of your day. It could be a matter of taking your dog for a walk or playing a sport with a family member. That could effectively accomplish more than one thing as you could be spending time with your family, friend, or pet. Prepare.  Prepare a healthy meal with your family. You can teach your kid to cook. With air fryers, instant pots, and partially prepared meal delivery services, it’s easier these days to cook and eat healthier. Additionally, it’s another way to spend time with and care for your family and yourself. Go get an acupuncture treatment from a licensed acupuncturist. That’s a great way to care for yourself and relax for an hour out of the week. That hour is about 0.6% time out of your week. You will likely leave feeling better and more relaxed.

We don’t have to do it all. It’s pretty much impossible to do it all. We can certainly try our best. There are factors that can affect our best. We are human and that’s perfectly fine. Give yourself the necessary breaks and be kind with others too. It’s amazing what we’re capable of when we’re not trying everything and find a balance that is manageable. 

Got Sleep?

Got Sleep?

Sleep is one of the pillars of health. It allows your body and mind to recharge. Inadequate amounts of sleep can be detrimental to one’s health. While the amount of sleep each person needs differs, most adults require an average of 7 to 9 hours of sleep each night. 

Not getting enough can result in weight gain, decreased mental clarity, and can be dangerous. People can get in accidents because they’re too tired, causing them to fall asleep behind the wheel of a car. Poor sleep puts people at greater risk of diseases, such as diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, kidney disease, and stroke. Lack of sleep affects people emotionally and can lead to depression. Inadequate sleep is associated with increased inflammation, which is a factor in many diseases and health problems. Sleep also plays a role in the body’s immunity. 

There is no question regarding the importance of sleep. For many people, the problem lies with getting enough sleep. 

One key to getting enough sleep is establishing a sleep schedule. Get ready for bed the same time every night, so you are in bed at the same time. It may be difficult to fall asleep at first. Over time, it should be easier to fall asleep shortly after going to bed. Wake up around the same time each day. If you aren’t sleeping in too late, then you will be able to fall asleep earlier. Our bodies work better on a schedule, naturally following a circadian rhythm that responds to light and dark. Thus, our bodies want to sleep when it’s dark outside. 

Another factor that contributes to sleep is a quiet and dark environment. Turn off your electronic devices, including phones, tablets, and TVs. Try a sleep mask. Sleep masks are beneficial for blocking light, decreasing distractions, minimizing eye dryness, good for the skin, safer than medications, can improve sleep quality, and may improve insomnia. With so many choices in sleep masks, it’s something simple one can use to help create the dark sleep environment that’s free of distractions. Ear plugs or a sound machine are great way to block out certain noises. Sometimes a sound machine helps to calm the mind. 

Slow, deep breathing is a great way to calm the mind while going to sleep. Keep it simple. While lying in bed, take a deep breath in, hold for a moment, let a deep breath out, hold for a moment, and repeat. Controlled breathing helps to calm the nervous system and relax the mind. 

Still having trouble sleeping, acupuncture and Chinese herbal formulas are an effective and safe way to help with sleep. Many people come out of acupuncture treatments very relaxed. Some people even nap during their acupuncture treatments. After the first treatment, people will often comment that they had the best sleep in a long time. There are different Chinese herbal formulas that are beneficial to helping with sleep as well. The herbal formulas can be complementary to acupuncture treatments. Both acupuncture and herbal formulas are natural means to help with sleep, as well as have numerous health benefits and can address other health problems. 

With the proper healthy sleep habits and even some natural interventions such as acupuncture, it is possible to get a good night’s sleep.

Food for Thought: Turmeric 

Food for Thought: Turmeric 

Turmeric isn’t just a spice used in food and drinks. The different parts of the turmeric plant are considered as different herbs in Chinese medicine and are used for their medicinal purposes in Chinese herbal formulas. It’s another example of food as medicine. 

In more recent years, turmeric has become increasingly popular due to its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. When you hear about turmeric, you may have also heard about curcumin. While turmeric is a plant with the root used to make the spice, curcumin is the naturally occurring compound within the turmeric plant’s root. Curcumin is a carotenoid compound that gives turmeric it’s bright yellow color and is a strong antioxidant. 

Turmeric or curcumin can be used to reduce inflammation, lower blood sugar, decrease cholesterol, and decrease fungal and bacterial growth. The health benefits are numerous. Turmeric can be used in cooking, in drinks, or as a supplement. It is important to note that turmeric is better absorbed with a fat. Cooking turmeric with fats such as olive oil or coconut oil can help it get absorbed better by the body as it provides medicinal effects. When taking a turmeric supplement or drinking a turmeric tea, it helps to either take it with another supplement such as fish oil or foods that contain or are cooked with a little fat. 

Due to the health benefits of turmeric, it’s a great food to incorporate into one’s diet. 

Make Gratitude Your Attitude 

Make Gratitude Your Attitude 

If you want to develop a positive attitude in life, express daily gratitude for the things you’re grateful for each day. 

Create a list of 3-5 gratitudes. The list could be the same things or different based on that particular day. 

Nothing outstanding needs to occur in order to create a gratitude list. The list could include simple things such as a bed to sleep in, clean water, and a roof over your head. 

You could use the same list of a few things read it to yourself then add additional things you’re grateful for that day. You could have the worst day, but the basic things you’re grateful for or good despite the bad day can put the day into a better perspective. 

The list can be a note created in the note app on your phone, set as a daily reminder in your calendar, a post-it on your bathroom mirror, or a gratitude journal that you write in each night. It doesn’t matter how you do but that you do it daily. 

When you are grateful for the things in your life on a daily basis, you develop a positive outlook on life. You don’t remember the bad as much as the good. You can learn to find the positive in negative situations. 

It can be difficult at first. Challenge yourself for 28 days because it takes about that long to form a habit. After a while, it becomes easier. Gratitude then becomes your attitude. 

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* Individual results vary. No guarantee of specific results is warranted or implied and your results will depend on many factors (full disclaimer).

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"Katrina's treatments are life changing. I highly recommend you making regular visits with her a part of your self care routine."

- Shani A.

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"I can’t say enough about Katrina and her skills as an acupuncturist. I had major scoliosis surgery done 8yrs ago. Since then I have been suffering with daily pain in my SI joint area. I decided to try acupuncture to see if it could help. By my second appointment I was feeling like a different person. I literally had no pain in that area! Although I need to keep up with my treatment I can honestly say that was the first time I didn’t feel pain in years! I highly recommend seeing Katrina. She is a wealth of knowledge regarding Eastern medicine and it’s also an opportunity to relax and recharge in a soothing environment."


- Lisa L.

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"Choosing Karma Zen Acupuncture is one of the best decisions I have ever made! Kat is knowledgeable, has a calming presence, is easy to talk to, and really listens to her patients. After only four visits I have noticed vast improvements in my health. I highly recommend Kat and Karma Zen!"


- Diane L.

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"Katrina is professional and personable. She has treated me numerous times with great success. I find that she is very receptive to my thoughts and concerns. Her willingness to go the extra mile to make sure that I’m comfortable is greatly appreciated. I wouldn’t hesitate recommending her to my friends, family and colleagues."


- Michael B.

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"Highly recommend Katrina- she is extremely knowledgeable and very easy to talk to. I had a pinched nerve in my neck, it was hard for me to even turn my neck. After 6 treatments, I can now return to yoga and exercise classes. I have had acupuncture from others and she is by far the best."


- Beth H.

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"Kat is an outstanding Acupuncturist. Her technique and bed side manner is very warm. Kat treated me for low back and neck pain. After a couple of treatments, I was back to exercising sooner than usual. I know that her treatments made a huge difference in my quick recovery. I highly recommend Kat for any issue."


- Lisa P.

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"I first came to Katrina at Karma Zen when my knee was badly injured. I received acupuncture for 2 months or so. Not only was my knee healed the experience was amazing for me! My ankle pain is gone my stress level went way down. I feel lighter with much more energy. Katrina has helped me and continues to help. I highly recommend KARMA ZEN!!"


- Jennifer R.

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"Katrina is great. I highly recommend Karma Zen Acupuncture! I no longer have back problems, my energy has returned, the swelling in my knee is gone, I’m sleeping better.. I could go on and on! Thank you Katrina."


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"Dr. Giangarra is an amazing, PASSIONATE, healer that has helped me with migraines and insomnia. It took about 5 sessions with acupuncture and cupping, and now I am MUCH better. I highly recommend Karma Zen for ppl with headaches and sleep issues. You can thank me later!"


- Patricia L.

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"It was about twenty-four hours after my first experience with Acupuncture to combat chronic allergies and rhinitis when noticed I hadn't sneezed in that amount of time.  She said it would help, and she knows what she's talking about and what she's doing!  Thanks, K!"


- Ned B.

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"Katrina is a wealth of information and compassion. I first visited her acupuncture studio on a recommendation from a friend. I had never tried acupuncture and cupping before, but a testy elbow problem had been keeping me up at night. More than relieving the pain associated with the elbow, I needed to get a good night’s sleep again! After my first treatment, the pain abated, and mobility and strength improved progressively week after week. I’d say by the third or fourth weekly session the elbow was a non-issue. I continue to go to Katrina at Karma Zen for general wellness. I always leave much calmer and more collected than when I arrive."


- Jen M.

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"Kat is amazing! She has helped with a variety of different health issues I was having like pain and anxiety. Now I am feeling SO much better, my life has really transformed for the better and I really owe it to the treatments and Kat's attentive and geunine care."

-Kira R.


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"Katrina is an amazing healer. I always feel seen and heard by her. Overall my health has improved so much since I started ssing her. I fully trust her with my healthcare."

-Martha E.


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"Highly recommended!"

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"Serene atmosphere and great intuitional healer."

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"Very gentle and caring."

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"Fantastic practitioner."

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"Professional, compassionate and effective care. Amazing staff. That is what you can expect when you visit Karma Zen Acupuncture. Highly recommended!"

-Todd, G.


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"Karma Zen Acupuncture is just like the name implies! Relaxing and healing. Kat is a wonderful practitioner. She is very knowledgeable and attentive. I highly recommend them!"

-Montserrat G.


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"Kat is such a wonderful acupuncturist, very knowledgable, and ensures you feel at ease with the treatments. I highly recommend Karma Zen Acupuncture!"

-Christal D.


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"Terrific practice, terrific practitioner!"

-Michael J.


Personalized Care With Outstanding Results




"As somewhat of a  "newbie" to the practice I was not sure what to expect from the session(s). I am now months into my scheduled weekly sessions and can feel the positive effects from those. Originally, the minor to worse aches and pains (hips, back, shoulders) were my focus in the treatment plan that Katrina helped me with. Now those  aches are minimizing. What I didn't expect  was how I responded to how acupuncture in the mental side of therapy, a sort of energy and mental shifting treatment. I love  how it helps me handle stress, to relax, motivating me in my exercise regimens and overall, the calming effects it supports and promotes. Katrina is a gifted practioner and is awesome!!Thanks! Mike"

-Mike W.


Your initial consultation is free. Come meet us in person and learn more.

Or, just call 512-766-3049 and we'll be happy to answer your questions.

Read more about:  Our Philosophy | Our History | Our Awesome Staff | Testimonials and Success Stories

* Individual results vary. No guarantee of specific results is warranted or implied and your results will depend on many factors (full disclaimer).

How can we help YOU today?

Chronic Pain

Gain relief from the pain impacting your life.

Joint Pain

Don't let joint pain keep you from enjoying the activities that you love.

Hormone Imbalances

Free yourself of the hormone imbalances affecting you.

Digestive Disorders

Take control of your digestive health.

Back Pain

Resolve your pain and improve your mobility naturally.


Don't let sciatic pain control your life with all natural treatments.

Anxiety & Depression

Don't allow your emotional pain hold you back any longer.

Migraine Headaches

Reduce the severity & frequency of migraines naturally.

Carpal Tunnel 


Be able to use your wrists without constant pain.

Frozen Shoulder

Regain full range of motion without pain, naturally.

Tennis Elbow/

Golfer's Elbow


Lose the pain while regaining your swing with natural treatments.

Knee Pain

Improve your mobility while alleviating your pain.

Shingles Nerve Pain


Don't continue to suffer in constant pain and sensitivity due to shingles.

Plantar Fasciitis

Be able to stand up without the fear of shooting pain in your foot.



The pain of lupus doesn't have to keep you from enjoying the activities that you love.


Don't be stuck living with the pain and swelling due to gout.



Be active and go about your day without constant joint pain.



Live without constant pain and enjoy your day


Alleviate your pain, while improving your mobility.

Hip Pain


Achieve all natural relief from hip pain.

IT Band Syndrome

Be more active without IT band pain stopping you.

Pinched Nerve


Don't allow the pain of nerve impingement keep you from enjoying the activities that you love.

Cervical Radiculopathy

Take control of the pain, numbeness, & tingling caused by cervical radiculopathy.



Enjoy your day without burning pain, numbness, and tingling.


Regain mobility and and don't get weighed down by fluid retention.

Stroke Recovery

Regain your life back from the effects of your stroke.

Muscle Spasms

Be able to go about your day withou the pain of muscle spasms getting in your way.


Alleviate the pain and discomfort of your TMJ disorder naturally.

Neck Pain


Don't allow neck pain to prevent you  from enjoying the things that you love.

Urinary Incontinence


Regain control your bladder, so you can take back your life.



Don't let the problems of PCOS impact your life.

Perimenopausal Symptoms

Prevent hot flashes and night sweats from keeping you up at night.



Don't allow the pain of endometriosis keep you from time with your family and friends.


Your pain, mood swings, and fatigue can be controlled naturally each month.

Addison's Disease


Don't let the constant fatigue, nausea, & dizziness of Addison's disease prevent you from enjoying your life.

Adrenal Fatigue

Prevent the fatigue, pain, and aches of adrenal fatigue from controlling your life.

Cushing's Syndrome


Don't allow the fatigue, hunger, & excess sweating of Cuching's syndrome control your life.


The pain and heavy menstruation due to your uterine fibroids don't have to interfere with enjoying time with family and friends.



Get the family you always dreamed about having one day.

Thyroid Disorders

Balance your hormones with natural medicine.



Be able to fall asleep and stay asleep with all natural remedies.

Restless Leg Syndrome

Don't let restless legs prevent you from being able to sleep.

Ulcerative Colitis

Take control over your ulcerative colitis symptoms.

Irritable Bowel Syndrome

Alleviate your digestive problems naturally.

Gallbladder Symptoms

Don't allow gallbladder symptoms to impact your daily life.

Crohn's Disease

Take control of the pain and digestive upset of crohn's disease.


Don't let the world continue to feel like it's spinning around you.

Salivary Stones

Don't let the pain and discomfor of salivary stones disrupt your day.

Weight Loss


Increase your energy and boost your metabolism.

Smoking Addiction

Take charge of your life and don't allow withdrawal symptoms to control you.

Cedar Fever

Don't let your allergies prevent you from enjoying the great outdoors.

Immune Support

Boost your immune system naturally and effectively, so you don't get sick or recover quicker if you already are sick.


Allow your true complexion to shine through.

Facial Rejuvination

Allow your inner beauty to shine outward even more.

Your initial consultation is free. Come meet us in person and learn more.

Or, just call 512-766-3049 and we'll be happy to answer your questions.

Read more about:  Our Philosophy | Our History | Our Awesome Staff | Testimonials and Success Stories

* Individual results vary. No guarantee of specific results is warranted or implied and your results will depend on many factors (full disclaimer).


Our unique blend of holistic medical therapies gets ALL your body's healing resources going in the same direction...


Calms stress, clears neuroendocrine pathways, affects neurotransmitters, and promotes circulation.


Promotes microcirculation, relieves tension, and helps release toxins.

Herbal Therapy

Transmits nature’s intelligence to heal damaged cells and tissues.

Gua Sha 

Breaks up scar tissue and connective tissue, reduces inflammation, and improves circulation.


Promotes circulation, alleviates tension, and helps reduce inflammation and swelling.

Relaxation & Stress Reduction   Focus on calming the mind and emotions to maximize your body’s healing resources.

Your initial consultation is free. Come meet us in person and learn more.

Or, just call 512-766-3049 and we'll be happy to answer your questions.

Read more about:  Our Philosophy | Our History | Our Awesome Staff | Testimonials and Success Stories

* Individual results vary. No guarantee of specific results is warranted or implied and your results will depend on many factors (full disclaimer).


You'll always feel welcome and cared for here.

Dr. Katrina Giangarra, DACM, L.Ac., Dipl. O.M.

Licensed Acupuncturist, Founder, & Clinic Director

Isabella (aka Izzy, aka Fluff Nugget) Giangarra

3rd Unofficial Mascot

Calliope (aka Callie) Giangarra

Unofficial Mascot

Esme (aka Ezzy or Ezzers) Giangarra

2nd Unofficial Mascot

Your initial consultation is free. Come meet us in person and learn more.

Or, just call 512-766-3049 and we'll be happy to answer your questions.

Read more about:  Our Philosophy | Our History | Our Awesome Staff | Testimonials and Success Stories

* Individual results vary. No guarantee of specific results is warranted or implied and your results will depend on many factors (full disclaimer).

Located in Spicewood

Karma Zen Acupuncture is located in a serene spot off of Highway-71 in the Bee Creek Business Park as part of the Bee Creek Clinic. Whether you live locally in Spicewood or in the surrounding areas of Briarcliff, Marble Falls, Lakeway, Bee Cave, Austin, or Dripping Springs, we are happy to provide a peaceful and relaxing environment as we help you on your path to better health. The location is a hidden gem as it’s great for those locally, not wanting to travel far, and for those wanting to escape from the more chaotic and busier areas.

Your initial consultation is free. Come meet us in person and learn more.

Or, just call 512-766-3049 and we'll be happy to answer your questions.

Read more about:  Our Philosophy | Our History | Our Awesome Staff | Testimonials and Success Stories

* Individual results vary. No guarantee of specific results is warranted or implied and your results will depend on many factors (full disclaimer).

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