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Welcome to SoHo. The land of art galleries, lofts, trendy boutiques—and the Consumer Discovery Show. I traveled to New York City to discover innovative consumer brands in wellness, beauty, and food, but what I found was so much more. From spicy kombucha to Bobbi Brown’s words of wisdom, here are four, fun lessons I learned at this elite summit set amongst the city skyline.
I came to listen to the founders/co-founders of Yasso, Health-Ade Kombucha, and Spindrift talk about the shift in consumable nutrition brands, and what I walked away with was a new view on how to take ownership in anything I create. These big consumer brands are not only products of passion, but each industry leader pulled innovation and motivation from their roots—family, friends and their upbringing. They used what was familiar, focusing on staying close to what they knew, what was in their blood and creating something more significant that’s done well.
Smart beauty brand play: placing your product in the bathroom of this wellness-forward conference, so people like me get to check out first-hand what you’re working with. While washing my hands, I found Revival Body Care and instantly fell in love with their Lavender + Grapeseed Body Scrub. My hands felt like they just got a new lease on life (too bad I couldn’t slather the scrub all over). Fast-forward a few minutes—I am at Revival’s booth chatting up the owner. Based out of Cleveland, Ohio, this brand offers organic, fair trade 100% vegan natural skin and hair care products that smell like *heaven*. Plus, the honest, raw passion that’s put into Revival’s products is evident, and my skin is thankful for that. 40 pouches of body scrub, please!
I never thought I would say that. I was drawn into the bright Health-Ade Kombucha booth (and their GIF machine). Promoting their new Jalapeno-Kiwi-Cucumber kombucha combination, I have to admit I was more than hesitant to try this drink. But, all the gals in the elevator on the way up to the show were raving about it, so I figured, why not? Somewhere between spicy and refreshing, this booch might be my new go-to. A fun mix of heat and cool sweetness, Health-Ade embraced branding this combo and I am totally on-board. Disclaimer, if you aren’t obsessed with spicy things, you might want to stick to their classic Pink Lady.
Okay, so we’ve all heard of the Bobbi Brown makeup empire. When the 90’s were all about contouring and stark red lips, Bobbi brought it back to basics. Now it’s 2018 and Bobbi is killing it in the wellness industry with Beauty Evolution. Whether it’s tasty collagen “cocktail” or a new boutique inn in New Jersey, she is unapologetically making sure you know she is an expert in all things wellness. Oh, and did I mention she is curating some majorly cool content on justBOBBI.com? As Bobbi said during the closing fireside chat yesterday, “I do it simple, and I do it my way.” You can’t argue with that mantra.
Acupuncture is extremely beneficial for various ailments ranging from digestion to carpal tunnel, but the level of effectiveness varies from person-to-person. I’ve had Sciatica patients spend months combating their back and leg pain, and others hop off the table in two hours, never needing a follow-up appointment. Some rotator cuffs take six weeks; others take two years.
Why is this?
While your body's response to acupuncture depends on the complaint or injury, it also depends on your overall health, and how well you take care of the injured site between sessions. If we eat junk food all the time, are inactive, don’t sleep well, or overwork ourselves, then injury is imminent, and recovery is going to be hard. Equally, if we ignore an injury or don't care for it, then we will likely stay injured for longer.
So, let’s break down what’s best for you when it comes to acupuncture:
“How often should you get acupuncture with specific ailments?”
This is different for everyone, but here are some general guidelines.
More is better.
Acupuncture has cumulative effects, so while most feel relief after one session, it likely will not have resolved the issue. Multiple follow up sessions are needed, and for your own comfort, it’s recommended that you use sessions before the effects have completely worn off each time.
Every time you receive a session, your relief should be more significant, and the effects should last longer—bringing the injury closer to resolution. With this in mind; the worse the injury, the more frequent you’ll want to receive acupuncture. Several times a week is standard, that way you will get out of discomfort faster, and you’ll need fewer sessions overall.
Understanding acute versus chronic ailments.
Some acute symptoms like nausea, dizziness, bleeding, swelling, or anxiety will clear up on the spot. However, for recent injuries pertaining to tissues, like a strained muscle, you can use three acupuncture sessions in one week with great effect. For example, with strained lower back muscles, you will feel less pain in one session, a significant reduction in inflammation and symptoms within three sessions. An ankle sprain is a little more serious and may take two or three weeks, but the general idea is the same.
With stubborn pain, or chronic issues like sciatica, skin rashes, nerve pain, hormone irregularities, it can take a bunch of sessions to see lingering results. Often there will be relief right after each session, but the symptoms return quickly (albeit with a little less vengeance). This just means the results are happening in smaller increments. For this reason, your practitioner will tell you to come in over three times a week for two or three weeks so you’ll get more relief faster, but you can space the sessions out as you begin to feel better.
“What can I do to make my acupuncture benefits bigger?”
As mentioned, how you care for yourself between sessions makes a big difference. Here’s a few pro tips.
Your practitioner will give you specific directions they want you to follow for your ailment, but generally, after an acupuncture visit, it is wise to drink a lot of water and rest.
Here’s the obvious thing we don’t often consider. If you get instant relief for your pulled hamstring, but then you go running the next day, it’s going to take forever to heal! That injured body part needs to be pampered and catered to. Your acupuncturist will give you food, supplement, lifestyle, and movement suggestions to use between sessions– use them all.
I’ve seen countless patients walk in with frozen shoulder, spend 90 minutes in the chair with various points and stimulation techniques, and then leave swinging their arm painlessly with 50% more range of motion. If they eat well, do their physical therapy, and are kind to their shoulders, the effects will last. Then, next time, we can add another 50% on to their range of motionBut, if they paint a house or swing a baseball, then I see them go right back to square one overnight. How we take care of ourselves between sessions really matters.
You will want to note any changes; no matter how small or irrelevant they seem. Your practitioner is armed with many protocols and techniques. They will always start with the combo that they’ve seen work best for your complaint, from there they will work backward or tweak it slightly based on the information you give them. Make sure to tell them every detail, even if it seems unrelated.
One lady, with unrelenting pain, finally revealed a game-changing nugget to me while nonchalantly laughing about her need to wear neck scarves everywhere. I found out she had been experiencing chills and had a significant aversion to wind during the summer. This “irrelevant” snippet made me radically change the protocol, and she was pain-free and healing rapidly within four sessions.
So, there you have it. How acupuncture benefits various body parts depends on the area concerned, but also on how we treat our bodies before, during, and after injury.