Gua Sha, “What is that?” You may ask. Gua (gwa), meaning to scrape or extract and Sha (shaw), meaning sand or toxins. It is a traditional ancient Chinese healing technique that dates back over two thousand years. This ancient method of promoting Chi or bioelectric vital life energy, blood circulation and removal of toxic heat, stagnant blood and lymph fluid from the body is an extremely important, almost miraculous method of improving ones health. Chi or Qi (pronounced “chee”) is the constant and vigorous movement of energy or life force that keeps us healthy and alive. This vital application was finally introduced to the west coast around a decade ago and gradually, but fortunately for us has emerged to the Midwest so that we too can reap the rewards from its wonderful healing properties. Even our local news aired a segment broadcasted from California on Gua Sha recently.
Do you suffer from chronic pain? Excess systemic toxicity? Poor circulation? Lymphatic congestion? Inflammation? Fatigue? Infections? Physical or emotional stress? If so, then you will greatly benefit from Gua Sha treatments.
Gua Sha is used regularly by practitioners and laymen in health care facilities and homes throughout China. The government in China goes to great lengths and funding to campaign the positive effects of Gua Sha through the use of media to reduce health care costs by making it a priority and decided that Gua Sha was the best way to keep their people in good health. That alone tells us the merit it upholds. If only our own government would start to support preventative healthcare even somewhat and if insurance companies would start to cover preventative alternative treatments perhaps we could keep health care cost at a minimum and actually become a healthier nation, of course, that is just my opinion on the matter but I believe that understanding and utilizing the energetic nature of healing would greatly enhance our healthcare system and drastically reduce our healthcare costs.
The method of applying Gua Sha involves the layering of Gua Sha oil on the skin. This oil is enhanced either with healing herbs or essential oils chosen to aid the extraction of toxic waste. The skin is then scraped in the area of discomfort or at times on the entire body using a specific Gua Sha tool depending on whether the treatment is for physical or emotional healing. Gua Sha treatments are not painful. As the body is scraped it pushes a build-up of fluid ahead of it, and after it passes, it leaves an indention or vacuum behind which draws toxic fluid out to the skins surface from deep within the tissues, the toxic fluid (Sha), as it floods to the surface is seen as small red, deep purple or green pools of blood and very often is hot on the area that the toxic heat is extracted. Red spots are an indication that toxins are being released. Where the area is deep purple the blood is old and extremely stagnant. A dark green discoloration is a sign that stagnant blood and toxic chi are being released from the system. Sometimes a clear fluid will draw to the surface in a form that resembles cellulite or goose bumps. Where the skin starts out as a green glow which turns to red during the treatment, is a sign that pain or stagnant chi is being removed. The exposing of the Sha is literally removing disease from deep within the system.
In Chinese forms of healing, there are three types of bad chi, the first being dead chi. It is stagnation that has been in the body for a very long time without being released. The system suffers from oxygen deprivation. Dead chi is very harmful as it can encourage the growth of cancer cells. Remember, cancer is anaerobic andcannot survive where oxygen is plentiful. The second type of bad chi is stagnant. It is caused by conditions such as lack of exercise, chronic heart, liver, kidney, spleen and lung problems and from an overweight state of health. The stagnant chi is always associated with pain throughout various parts of the body. The third kind of bad chi is toxic chi–where waste products or toxic residue accumulates in the system and when left untreated can result in very serious health problems.
Gua Sha creates a suction on the skin that pulls stagnant intercellular fluid to the surface, removing toxic debris, and replacing it with fresh oxygenated, nutrient rich fluid, which inturn accelerates regeneration and revitalizes the region where cancer cells may or already have manifested.
Unlike acupuncture, although it is extremely valuable also, Gua Sha can treat not only the meridian system but the entire system. This is why the Chinese utilize Gua Sha as their foremost treatment in the prevention of disease. Gua Sha can be used to treat, alleviate and heal chronic degenerative diseases, migraines, chronic neck, shoulder and back pain, bone spurs, strains and sprains, menstrual disorders, insomnia, heart disease, hypertension, Vertigo, sinusitis, ear and eye disorders, chronic infections, sciatica, osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, bursitis, neuralgia, asthma, cysts and tumors, carpal tunnel syndrome, stress, digestive disorders, muscle aches, breast pain, varicose veins, skin disorders, blood disorders and liver, spleen, kidney, bladder, pancreatic stress and much more. If you are suffering from any of the these ailments, then it is time to do something beneficial for yourself and experience Gua Sha and its advantages firsthand by making an appointment with a practitioner that offers this therapy and getting yourself on the road to recovery.
Chronic Disease is extremely prevalent today in our nation. More often than not, individuals everywhere are either sick and tired or experiencing some degree of severe pain either physically, emotionally, mentally or spiritually. Just in my office alone the amount of circulatory insufficiency and oxidative stress I am seeing on a daily basis greatly concerns me. I, along with my patients are thankful for this steadfast ancient technique and its healing qualities. How could we, here in America, close our eyes to such a remarkable therapy that has been used consistently over the past 2000 years. Thank you China for a marvelous, vital, restorative therapy that can lead us on the path to DISCOVERING WELLNESS.
Dr. Kimberly Kaye, ND
Rachelle Cain, NBC-HWC
Rachelle Cain is a certified Holistic Health Coach. As an HHC Rachelle is a supportive mentor and wellness authority that works with clients to help them feel their best through food and lifestyle changes.
Rachelle’s passion is to continue educating people on how to take care of themselves in a way that provides them with long, healthy, vibrant lives.