Seasonal Eating

It is simply part of our biology that we eat differently each season. The cooler air, less daylight hours, holiday parties, and less physical activity all have a significant effect on what and how much we eat. 

Even though it is 2019, biologically we are programmed to fatten up to survive the elements, the way many other animals do. 

Did you know that Winter actually makes you hungrier? Seasonal changes affects many hormones related to hunger and appetite - glucocorticoids, ghrelin, serotonin, and leptin - causing hunger, depression, a slower metabolism, and weight gain. So you are not only hungrier, but you crave carb heavy comfort foods. It's a lose/lose - or rather a gain/gain!

There is no need to suffer, however. Satisfy body and mind and eat stomach warming comfort foods that fill the void in your belly and heart. 

Soup - A great way to get more fiber since you can toss just about anything into a soup pot — greens, beans, lentils, whole grains, and veggies. Add in some chicken, pork, lean beef, or fish for your daily dose of protein.

Citrus - They aren't just for Summer! We live in California where fresh fruits are in supply even in Winter. Sautéed or tossed in with lightly steamed winter greens, Swiss chard, chicory, or kale are a lovely pick me up in winter.

Veggies - Vegetables, like broccoli, cauliflower, brussels sprouts, and winter squashes are incredibly good for you, and are great for roasting and throwing on top of some pasta, polenta, or simply as a side dish. Simply toss them with a little olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper and stick them in the oven or broiler until they start to brown.

Salmon - It is vital in winter to up your intake of vitamin D due to limited daylight hours, the change in the wavelength of the sun’s rays, and less time outdoors. Vitamin D plays a crucial role in maintaining mood. Salmon, which is a delicious and super healthy source of Vitamin D, also is rich in omega-3 fatty acids - another mood booster!

If you’re going to give in to a craving — and let's just agree you occasionally should give in — make healthful swaps. If you’re dying for a bowl of pasta and cheese, switch out regular enriched pasta for yam or zucchini noodles and add a few steamed vegetables for fiber.

And if you are dying for something sweet, go for a steaming mug of dark chocolate. Rich in flavanols, dark chocolate helps reduce the risk of heart disease, raises levels of healthy cholesterol, and is a delicious mood booster. Check out this link for some healthy brands of dark chocolate...

Welcome 2019

Welcome 2019
The Year of the Earth Pig
And a year of fortune and luck!

Although it is not yet the Chinese New Year, we need all the encouragement we can get! So, despite the current state of the stock market, let's revel in the prospect that this new Pig year represents FORTUNE and LUCK! Mend wishes you all of these for 2019 and MUCH more.


Bring on the Heat!

Fee/Rate Increase

Due to both PPO and HMO low reimbursement rate to Acupuncturists and Insurance company's refusal to pay for most modalities that Mend considers standard care, starting June 26th Mend will charge a $60 Modality Fee per visit. If you have a CoPay, your CoPay will go towards fulfilling the Modality Fee. Some insurances are exempt from this Modality Fee so be sure to let us know if your insurance plan has changed. 


Welcome to Mend!

We are so happy to welcome Brian Ramisch to Mend! Brian is a Certified Massage Therapist, Health Educator, and Reiki Master Healer. His technique, Shiatsu Alchemy, combines elements of Shiatsu/Acupressure,  CranioSacral Therapy, Zero Balancing, Myofascial Massage, Trigger Point Therapy, Reiki, PNF Stretching, and Joint Mobilization. He understands that every client's specific needs are different, therefore each of his sessions are customized to best address these unique qualities.

Visit his website at: https://www.shiatsu-

Bring on the Heat!, Mend Family Acupuncture in Los Angeles, CA


Foods To Help You Stay Cool!

Summer is synonymous with cold beers, days by the pool, and frozen desserts. It’s all about beating the heat.

Surprisingly enough, though, foods that seem like chill choices may actually have the opposite effect. According to traditional Chinese medicine, there are “warming foods” and “cooling foods”—and the definitions have nothing to do with their temperature.

“It is said that cooling foods help to clear heat and toxins from the body, whereas the warming foods increase circulation and raise ‘qi,’ or vital energy,” explains Kerry Bajaj, a certified health coach at Eleven Eleven Wellness Center in New York City. Reach for the following eight foods this summer for some sweet, healthy relief.

1. Cucumber – Being “cool as a cucumber” might actually have some weight to it. Cucumbers are incredibly hydrating, and staying adequately hydrated during the hotter months is crucial. Snack on cucumber slices and hummus, or if you’re truly desperate for some heat relief, “a green juice with lots of cucumber and lemon is a great way to stay hydrated and cool,” says Bajaj. Either way, you’ll reap the benefits.

2. Watermelon – No day at the beach is complete without some fresh slices of watermelon, and you’re actually doing your body a favor by keeping the tradition alive. “It’s so helpful to eat seasonally, says Bajaj. “In the summer, cooling foods like watermelon can act like internal A/C, while in the winter, warming foods like meat, spices, and root vegetables can act like an internal space heater.”

3. Peaches – Originally cultivated in China, peaches are another cool, seasonal pick. Not only are they delicious this time of year, but they also contain vitamins A and C, which promote healthy skin—and at 35-50 calories a pop, they make the perfect diet-friendly dessert.

4. Apples – Pair apples with peanut butter for the perfect snack that will cool you down and fill you up. Apples contain about 4g fiber for around 95 calories. They also contain a type of soluble fiber called pectin, which has been found to stop hunger in its tracks and aid in weight loss.

5. Pineapple – Along with banana, spinach, kale and cucumber, pineapple makes for a kick-ass green smoothie booster. In fact, all of these ingredients are considered to be cooling, so blend away. Pineapple is also the only known source of an enzyme called bromelain, which is credited for reducing inflammation in the body.

6. Leafy Greens – Is there anything that leafy greens can’t do for your body? Spinach, kale, collard greens, and romaine take the nutritional cake (so to speak) for healing and helping your body. Since greens have a high water content, they’re easy to digest. This means your body doesn’t have to work as hard, which saves you energy and keeps you cool.

7. Lemon – Citrus has a cooling effect on the body and promotes detoxification. Everyone knows how important it is to drink a ton of water every day, but plain ol’ H2O can be boring. Time and time again experts recommend adding lemon to your water not only for its skin and immune-boosting benefits, but because it actually encourages you to drink more water overall.

8. Zucchini – Zucchini is actually a type of summer squash that can range in color from yellow to a dark green. In addition to containing vitamin C and important phytonutrients, zucchini is a great source of manganese. The mineral can help protect your body from free radicals (particularly of concern during the summer months when you’re more susepatble to sun damage) and also promotes collagen production and healthy bone tissue growth.


Beauty Tips to Stay Looking Cool!

During the winter all you yearn for is the warm summer days. But then the August heat hits and your makeup slides, your hair goes north, and your skin becomes a sticky oil slick. So here are a few tips to stay cool this Summer. 

Your internal body temperature rises when outdoor temperatures go up. To maintain a normal, comfortable temperature, your body needs to release heat through its pores. So, a little sweat is good. Excessive sweating, however, can cause dehydration, which snowballs into irritability and sluggishness. (In extreme circumstances, it can even make a person delusional.) That’s why it’s important to keep your body temperature down BEFORE you go outside. 

Tip: Place moisturizer or body oil in the refrigerator so after you’re dry, you can smooth on the refreshingly cool products.

Tip: Take a cool shower, rinse with cold water, and then blow dry your hair with the cold setting of the dryer – or, just let your hair air-dry! If you simply must blow dry on the hot setting, do it after dark. Washing and drying your hair at night when it is cooler outside will be much more comfortable.

Tip: To keep your skin dry and free of oil is to put as little on it as possible. Refresh your skin with a toner (or glycolic pads) or spray it with some rosewater while you're out and about during the day. If you live in a drier climate (or have dry skin), moisturizer may be needed even during the Summer. Avoid emollients, such as lanolin, which obstruct the pores. Heavy moisturizers act like a sweater on your face, so look for a noncomedogenic moisturizer (one that won’t clog pores) that contains a humectant, such as hyaluronic acid, aloe or glycerin, which will attract moisture from the air to the skin. And use it only where necessary. You can add a light powder to control shine or use blotting papers.

Tip: Don't forget your feet! Wear strappy or open-toe sandals that allow your feet to breathe. Also run deodorant along the bottoms of your feet to prevent stickiness and blisters.

Tip: Protect your skin with sunscreen! Definitely go for the zinc oxide block kind of sunscreens that have minimal chemicals. 

Tip: Eat more often—but eat less. Spicy foods, protein-laden meals, and creamy ingredients can raise your body temperature and send you into a metabolic overdrive. So it’s best to steer clear of heavy meals and go for fruits and vegetables, which are saturated with water and help keep your body hydrated and comfortable. Avoid salt, alcohol, and caffeine. All of these dehydrate the body. Caffeine also constricts blood vessels, which hinders the body’s ability to cool itself.

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Welcome to 2018

Welcome to 2018
The Year of Life, Earth and the Dog!

Did you know that the number 18 is a spiritual number in Judaism? The word "Chai' translated from Hebrew to English means "Life." Within the Jewish faith, "Chai" possesses both numerical and symbolic meaning. The Hebrew word consists of two (2) letters in the alphabet: Chet (ח) and Yud (י). Together these letters form "Chai" – "LIFE"! 

And according to the Chinese Zodiac, 2018 is the year of the Dog! Chinese New Year in 2018 is on Friday, the 16th of February and ends on February 4, 2019. In Chinese astrology each zodiac year (rat, ox, tiger, rabbit, dragon, snake, horse, sheep, monkey, rooster, dog and pig) is not just associated with an animal sign, but also with one of the five elements: Metal, Wood, Water, Fire, and Earh. 2018 is the element of Earth – so 2018 is an Earth Dog Year.

Whatever your beliefs are, Mend Family Acupuncture and Healthcare wishes you JOY, HEALTH, and PROSPERITY in this year of the Brown Earth Dog! Be kind to yourself and trust that the world is filled with love. 

Welcome to 2018, Mend Family Acupuncture in Los Angeles, CA

With A New Year Comes a New Deductible.

Unfortunately, with a new year also comes a new deductible.

Come into Mend and make your insurance work for you. Your visits will go towards your deductible so when your deductible has been met, you just have the CoPay. 

Don't know if you even have a deductible? Feel free to give us a call and we are happy to run your coverage within 24 hours. We will let you know if you have a deductible, how much it is, and how many visits it will take in order to reach it?

We know insurance is confusing and we are hear to make things easier. Call us at 323.459.2000.

Stacy Lauren-Kon, LAc, MSOM offers Acupuncture in Los Angeles, CA

Want to Try a Tibetan
Foot Soak?

Mend Family Acupuncture in Los Angeles, CA

Mend now offers individual Tibetan Foot Soak sachets for you to take home and enjoy. 

For centuries, Tibet has been using it's rare plants in formulas to create powerful healing foot soaks.

Herb soaks not only feel terrific, but there is some evidence showing that they benefit patients with chronic cold feet, neuropathy, poor digestion, cold body, bad circulation, skin issues, fatigue, depression and more.

These are some of the Earth's most powerful stimulating, warming and healing herbs that have come from some of the harshest environment.

So treat yourself to a warm Tibetan Foot soak this cold and flu season!

One Heck of a Flu Season!

Welcome to 2018, Mend Family Acupuncture in Los Angeles, CA

With the 2017 Flu Vaccine being only 10% effective, this has been one hell of a flu season!

There were “record-high numbers of laboratory-confirmed influenza notifications and outbreaks, and higher-than-average numbers of hospitalizations and deaths” noted Anthony Fauci, M.D., director of the NIH’s National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, and colleagues in the November 29 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

Mend has many tools to combat this tough flu season! Acupuncture, fire cupping, moxa, and patented herbal formulas have been used for thousands of years to ease cold and flu symptoms and help you get through the rough Winter. Give us a call!

Facial Fridays!

Stacy Lauren-Kon, LAc, MSOM offers Acupuncture in Los Angeles, CA

By appointment only, and starting January 19th, Mend will offer Facial Fridays from 8:00am to 12:00pm.

Our usual $225 Acu-Facial will be offered for $175. So come, bring a few friends, and sit down to a spot of champagne or tea, some light snacks, and a fabulous Acu-Facial.

To learn more about what an Acu-Facial entails, give us a call at 323-459-2000.

Late Summer - the 5th Season!

by Stacy Lauren-Kon, Lac MSOM

Did you know that there are actually 5 Seasons in Chinese Medicine. Late Summer begins at the end of August and runs to the first day of Fall. It is the Season of Earth. 

Each Season in Chinese Medicine belongs to one of the 5 Elements – Earth (Late Summer), Metal (Fall), Water (Winter), Wood (Spring), and Fire (Summer). Earth being Late Spring, it is the Season of heat, fullness, full growth, bringing life down to a slower pace, and preparing for Metal (Fall). It is time to transition from Yang to Yin energy and turn inward to the coolness of Fall and Winter.

Late Summer - the 5th Season!, Mend Family Acupuncture in Los Angeles, CA

Each Element not only corresponds to a certain season, but also corresponds to a certain organ or energy system within the body. Earth (Late Summer) is the season associated with the stomach, spleen, and pancreas. Earth (Late Summer) also governs the muscles and is related to the mouth.

Here are some other characteristics of Earth – Color: Yellow, Nature: Yang to Yin, Organ: Stomach/Spleen, Emotion: Worry/Pensive, Taste: Sweet, Body Condition: Damp.

This is a brief season and is one of transition and relaxation. The crazy days of Summer are gone and we are now shoring up our energy sources for the cold to come. Your may be feeling more fatigued than a few weeks ago. This low energy is the effect of the exertion, full energy and emotional stress of Summer (Fire).

So these are the days to do whatever puts a smile on your face and reduces your stress level! Make sure you get lots of rest, gentle exercise, and please eat healthy foods to shore up your energy for the months to come. 

Best and be well,

Stacy Lauren-Kon LAc MSOM

Mend Family Acupuncture and Healthcare

Gas Lighting

by Stacy Lauren-Kon, Lac MSOM

Ariel Leve is an excellent author and old friend. She recently wrote an article for The Guardian entitled, "How to survive gaslighting: when manipulation erases your reality"

This piece eloquently illustrates how the current administration is triggering old trauma and PTSD in so many people. 

I've certainly noticed in my practice how so many patients are having a tough time with anxiety since the election. This article is comforting, validating, and helps put it all into perspective.

“We are living in a time where a lot of people are having a tough time deciding what’s real and feeling like they are being manipulated,” Stern says. “If they know something is true and somebody tells you it’s not true, holding on to your reality is essential. You can’t be gaslighted if you stay inside your own reality and recognize the manipulation when you see it.”


Read Ariel Leve's article at the Guardian:

For further reading buy her book!

Chinese New Year and the Beginning of Spring/Yang

Chinese New Year and the Beginning of Spring/Yang, Mend Family Acupuncture in Los Angeles, CA

Happy New Year!

I know it feels like Winter to most people right now but according to Chinese Medicine, this is the beginning of Spring. Spring means growth and the start of Yang energy growing stronger in the world around us as well as within us. In a mere 6 weeks Yang and Yin will be more balanced during the vernal equinox and we will be emerging from the predominance of darkness (Yin) and move more into the light (Yang). 

Winter is a time to look inward and now that Spring is sprouting it is time for physical outward regrowth. A great Qi Gong exercise is "Combing Therapy" or "Shu Fa". Combing therapy has been around for thousands of years and is found in many Eastern Medical Texts. 

Traditionally, combs were made of either bone or wood. However, a more modern comb will suffice or you can simply comb your scalp with your finger pads/nails for an even more effective treatment – since the fingers actually contain Qi. Combing is a super simple "exercise" that can be done every morning or night at home to stimulate blood circulation of the scalp and promote hair regrowth and lessen tension headaches, as well. 

This may seem silly, but by stimulating the scalp you are stimulating the most Yang area of the body. The scalp is also a microsystem of the entire body, so stimulating the channels on the scalp actually mobilizes Qi and Blood in the entire body.

Spring is also the time associated with the "Wood" phase of the year and the Liver. The Liver is a Yang viscera. At the beginning of Spring nourishing the Liver helps expel and rid yourself of disease and protect your health. Nutritional recommendations at the beginning of Spring are geared to nourish and support the Liver. Patients with chronic Liver Fire (anger issues) and Liver Qi Stagnation (PMS, body aches, depression, anxiety etc...) need to be aware of their diets during this critical season. As a general rule, eating mildly acrid and warm foods will accentuate and support this function. Great foods to eat this time of year include: scallions, leeks, chives, cilantro, ginger and garlic.  

Here is a very simple recipe with leeks to warm and move the Liver Yang. Shred leeks and then stir-fry thin pork strips in cooking oil, adding soy sauce and pepper to taste. This recipe nourishes the Liver and protects the Yang.

Another traditional beginning of Spring recipe is Pork Bone Red Date Soup. Even before bone broth became the latest health craze in America it was considered an important food for health around the world. This dish builds blood, warms the interior without being drying, and can be taken to either prevent or treat an existing cold.


Pork bone, about 3 lbs
Chinese dried red dates (Hong Zao, or Da Zao), about 6 pieces
1 Large scallion white


Place washed pork bones into a slow cooker and add enough water to cover bones (about 2 quarts)
Cut ginger and scallion into large pieces, place in slow cooker with bones; add dates as well to slow cooker
Cook on low for 8 hours or more (the prep can be done in the evening and left to cook overnight); add salt to taste
Drink broth daily
Other vegetables or ingredients can be added to this soup as desired. 

Happy Chinese New Year!!!!!