Moxibustion of ST36 for Immunity

The acupuncture point ST36, also known as Zu San Li, is located below the patella, 3 cun below ST35, 1 finger-breadth lateral from the anterior border of the tibia. It is considered one of the most tonifying points on the body. It is used to benefit the stomach and spleen, harmonize the intestines, tonify the qi (energy of our body) and blood, and build the immune system to dispel pathogens and prevent disease. The name Zu San Li translates to leg three mile and according to legend, burning of moxa at ST36 would provide a traveler energy to walk another 3 more miles.

Moxibustion is a form of heat therapy that is used in Traditional Oriental Medicine. It is made from the Chinese herb, Mugwort (Artemisiae Argyi). It comes in many forms, as moxa sticks, cones, loose herb, etc to provide indirect and direct stimulation on acupuncture points. It is a gentle yet effective way to strengthen your body. Moxibustion or moxa on the acupuncture point ST36 is traditionally used to improve longevity and prevent illness. It strengthens the body by tonifying the qi and blood and boosting the immune system. In animal studies, moxibustion at ST36 has shown that it has an augmenting effect on antiviral activity in first-line defense mechanisms such as prophylactic effect for viral infections, increased cytokine production, and increased natural killer cell activity.

Moxibustion can be a simple addition to a treatment that can boost your immunity, strengthen your body, and increase your general sense of well-being! It’s an easy way to boost your immunity during this flu season. Ask your acupuncturist if moxa is right for you.

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