Food Bank Fridays

Did you know that 4500 people are in need of assistance in putting food on their table in Whatcom County each week? We have decided to help. Starting this week until the end of the year we will be offering:

25 % of our proceeds to the
Bellingham Food Bank

That’s right. For every acupuncture treatment or herbal prescription that you schedule and purchase on Fridays, we are donating 25 % of those proceeds to the Bellingham Food Bank.

We are here to serve you. Meet Maria, she is ready to help you with all your healthcare needs, whether you are trying to conceive, needing pregnancy or labor support, or transitioning through menopause.

When you book your appointment for a Friday treatment your are now  GIVING and RECEIVING! And what a great way to start your weekend?


Or, if you prefer, you can donate directly to them by clicking here.

Acupuncture for Postpartum Recovery

Congratulations, your new baby has arrived! The days, weeks, and months following the birth of your new bundle of love can be both exciting and joyful. It is also a delicate, and perhaps difficult, time for any new parent. In addition to adjusting to a new heartbeat and member of your family, there is also much postpartum recovery needed for you, the new mama. All of this adds up to a challenging time!

Chinese medicine actually views the postpartum period as the “fourth trimester,” a unique opportunity to restore and rebalance the health and hormones of the mother. In light of this, here are some tips to give you the support you need.

Help During Your Postpartum Recovery

Armed with evidence-based information and a healthy dose of Chinese medicine, new parents can have a quick recovery and a satisfying postpartum period. Acupuncture and Chinese herbs can be really helpful for women recovering after childbirth. We support mothers at Lotus Leaf Acupuncture & Wellness Center during the postpartum period for a wide range of conditions such as:

Newborn Love

  • lactation insufficiency
  • mastitis
  • postpartum depression (PPD)
  • anxiety
  • fatigue
  • pain
  • incontinence
  • urine retention
  • c-section recovery
  • emotional overwhelm & stress

Postpartum Nutritional Support


A congee is traditional Chinese medicinal porridge made from rice. It is seen as a powerful therapeutic food for strengthening digestion, boosting energy and aiding in the recovery from illness.

A basic congee can be made from using ½ cup of rice to 3 cups of liquid.

  • Congee with Gou Qi Zi and Da Zao

    This liquid can be water for a very plain congee, milk or nut milks (rice milk or almond milk) for a sweet rice pudding type of congee, or you can use vegetable or chicken stock for a savory congee. You may also prefer to use a ½ water ½ milk/stock mixture depending on your taste preferences.

  • The amount of liquid you use will determine the thickness of the porridge, which can be thick like oat porridge or watery like a soup, simply adjust the amount of liquid depending on your preference.
  • White rice is usually the grain used  in China, however brown rice can be used to give a savory tasting congee.
  • For a fast cook: Place all ingredients in a large heavy-bottomed saucepan or a Dutch oven and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to medium low and cook at a lively simmer, stirring occasionally, until the rice has completely broken down and the mixture is creamy, about 1 hour.
  • For the traditional slow cook (my personal preference) use a crock pot and cook overnight, about 8 hours on low heat. You will need to make sure you have enough liquid for this.
  • For postpartum support I like to add Gou Qi Zi (Chinese Wolfberry Fruit/Lycium berries) and Da Zao (dates) to nourish Blood, strengthen digestion, and improve energy.
  • Eat and enjoy~

Motherwarming for Postpartum Care

This is one of my favorite self-care treatments that can be done in the comfort of your own home. You can read about it here. For now, I will say it has also been one of the most frequently used recovery methods in China applied to the postpartum mother for centuries. Simply apply moxa to your lower belly for 5 -15 minutes a day and receive the benefits of:

  • helping the organs of the abdomen recover after pregnancy
  • increasing breast milk supply
  • healing scars from cesarean sections
  • decreasing abdominal pain after birth
  • providing the mother with increased feelings of well-being, stamina and strength

Research: Acupuncture for Postpartum Recovery


Motherwarming is a therapeutic technique for nourishing women who have recently given birth. Using an ignited stick of the compressed herb mugwort (Artemisia) along acupuncture points on the lower abdomen, the belly is gently warmed for a period of 5 to 15 minutes.

Postpartum Nourishing Care

Lighting the Moxa Stick

Traditional knowledge from China reports that Motherwarming is useful in:

  • helping the organs of the abdomen recover after pregnancy
  • increasing breast milk supply
  • healing scars from cesarean sections
  • decreasing abdominal pain after birth
  • providing the mother with increased feelings of well-being, stamina and strength.

Motherwarming is useful for women who have given birth both vaginally or via cesarean section, but should not be done by women who are experiencing any type of infection or who are already feeling overheated.

When to Use Motherwarming

Motherwarming can be started as early as 4-5 days after giving birth and can be continued regularly as desired during the first month postpartum. Even after the early postpartum period is over, motherwarming can be useful in easing the pain of menstrual cramps.

Holding the Moxa Stick Above the Skin

What You Need for Motherwarming

The stick of mugwort you have been given is called a moxa stick. It has undergone a process involving charcoal that helps in reducing smoke and odor in your home. Prior to lighting the moxa you will need:

  • a lighter or match
  • a small candle
  • a small tray for removing ash from the burning ember
  • a small jar with sand or rice in the bottom for extinguishing the moxa when finished

How to Use Moxa for Motherwarming

Motherwarming can be performed by the mother, or by friends and family.

Light one end of the moxa stick from the burning candle, the same way you would a stick of incense. It may take a few moments for the end to light completely. You want the end of the moxa stick to be glowing red, evenly, on all sides of the tip. When you blow on it you will be able to feel warmth radiating from the red ember.

To perform Motherwarming hold the tip of the lit moxa stick 2-5 centimeters from the mother’s belly button and slowly move it back and forth along the center of her body between the belly button and the top of her pubic bone. She should feel a pleasant radiating warmth coming from the moxa and the feeling should never become uncomfortably hot. Continue to slowly move the moxa stick up and down the center line of her lower abdomen for 5-15 minutes.

The moxa stick should never make direct contact with her skin.

Motherwarming for Postpartum Care

As the stick burns it will create ash, which should be gently scraped off on the edge of the small tray.

When you finish place the moxa lit side down into the jar with sand/rice at the bottom. This will extinguish the moxa stick and it will be ready the next time you’d like to use it. The mother should then enjoy some quiet time for resting.

If you have questions or concerns please contact us at 360-393-8302.