Between Heaven and Earth: A Guide to Chinese Medicine
For anyone seriously interested in learning about Chinese medicine, Beinfield and Korngold provide a comprehensive, though technical, look at it. The book is divided into three parts: theory; the psychology of Chinese medicine and therapy; and such treatment methods as acupuncture, herbs and diet. Licensed acupunturists, Beinfield and Korngold stress that the models of Eastern and Western medicine are significantly different. Consequently, so are methods, emphases and outcomes. Chinese medicine, they claim, readjusts the body's balance and enhances self-healing--while Western medicine, in contrast, stresses suppressing and eliminating pathological phenomena, and crisis-intervention. The authors don't discount the need, in some instances, for Western medicine. In fact, they bring this issue up poignantly with an event close to home: their son was born with a heart deformity that required specialized surgery. To help maintain his health, his parents incorporated herbal remedies in his diet. A particularly interesting concept is "culinary alchemy" or kitchen medicine, based on the Chinese tenet "Who we are determines what is most beneficial for us to eat." The authors provide an extensive, cross-referenced compendium of herb names, as well as information on using Chinese patent medicines and formulas for general health problems.