ACUPUNCTURE works under the theory that the imbalances caused by diet, lifestyle, environment and genetics can be corrected with thin needles inserted at key points. Channels can be related to the idea of referred pain: the concept that a foot injury can lead to back pain is commonly accepted. Acupuncture takes this one step further, and observes imbalances reflected in its own referral system or meridian system. Qi is life, and life vital force; absence of qi is death. Qi is manipulated with acupuncture needles to balance the meridians. Qi creates everything around us, and is the life force; the better the energy the better you feel. Qi was originally the same character as a bowl of rice, or that which nourishes you. So in simple terms, qi is anything that nourishes your body well. From the air you breathe, to the food you eat to the interconnections that you have. Acupuncture uses the process of metabolism and affects all bodily and mental functions. For a more complete explanation of qi, look here.
HERBAL therapy is a plant based therapy that combines different herbs to treat each individual. developed separately from acupuncture therapy and uses internal medicine (formulas) to re-establish proper metabolic, endocrine (hormonal) and general organ function. In this way it is no different from western medicine. Formulas are based on the current, past and future projections of what health means to that patient. For example: a patient who is focused on weight loss who has 100 pounds to lose is going to see less dramatic health changes in a week than a person looking for palliative care after surgeries. Herbology is different from pharmaceuticals, as it works off a pharmacopia. In plain terms, multiple different herbs are used to treat a disease, and tailored to the individual. There is a saying ‘same cure, different disease, same disease, different cure’. The observation of the individual is key to understanding the relationship that person has to themselves and their surroundings. Every formula is created for the person using it. For more information on herbology and its Western implications, please look at : http://www.itmonline.org/