Artvoice: Buffalo's #1 Newsweekly
Home Blogs Web Features Calendar Listings Artvoice TV Real Estate Classifieds Contact
Previous story: It's Big Nuze
Next story: Hockey Tournament Was Fine
Artvoice Weekly Edition » Issue v10n2 (01/13/2011) » Five Questions With...

Ira Wahrman: Acupuncturist, Eastern Herbalist

Get to know a Buffalonian...

Ira Wahrman: Acupuncturist/Eastern Herbalist

With alternative and holistic medical treatments all the rage nowadays, more and more often practitioners are looking to thousands of years of medical history in the Far East for answers to our body’s natural health and spirit. No, Wahrman is not in fact Asian, but he has been studying acupuncture, herbalism, meditation, and Buddhism for six years in both the United States and China. He currently practices Tui Na (body massage treatment) and Qigong (an overall energy philosophy towards health) out of his apartment in Buffalo (702 Elmwood Avenue). For more information, Ira Wahrman can be reached at (716) 882-0825.

Without getting too technical, how does acupuncture work?

There is a network of energetic pathways that circulate around a person’s body. These pathways pass through organs, muscle, bone, tendon, and skin. Through the use of acupuncture needles, herbal medicine, meditation, and Qigong (energetic exercise), these channels are regulated. The regulation of the channel system has effects not only on physical illness but also on mental and emotional problems as well.

How much of the positive benefits of holistic treatments are built on the placebo effect?

Chinese medicine as well Western medical treatment effectiveness relies on the want and effort of a patient to become well. The want of the patient to become well and the work done by the patient in regards to there own health combined with medical treatment allows for recovery from illness.

What are the better herbs we can take for our health? What are some of the common ailments for which people seek treatment?

Chinese herbs are prescribed very differently from other forms of herbal medicine. All prescriptions are given in formulas. The formulas are tailored to the specific needs of an individual patient. Patients seek treatment for many types of ailments. People come for pain management, anxiety, digestive problems, asthma, PMS, and insomnia. This is only a short list of what Chinese medicine can treat.

What about side effects? Isn’t that why pharmacists are paid so well, to know about cross effects of and allergies to drugs?

There is not much concern for side effects in Chinese medicine. Chinese medicine was the only form of medicine in China for 5,000 years. Through many generations of doctors’ trial and error, we have Chinese medicine as it exists today. The use of individualized formulas makes the treatment tailored to the specific condition of a patient. This allows for the patient to have relief from their problem without any negative side effects. Due to this long history, the side effects of the medicines have been reduced to very minimal amount.

What about Chinese remedies like tiger penis? How do we balance desires for traditional medicines with environmental concerns?

The use of endangered animal parts in Chinese medicine has become a big problem. In Chinese history medicines such as tiger bone and rhinoceros horn were used in treatment of very specific ailments. Today these remedies are being abused. The greed associated with their uses decimated these animal populations and can tarnish the image of Chinese medicine. It is illegal to use or sell animal parts taken from endangered species in both China and the United States. In China there is much work being done to stop the sales and distribution of these animal-based medicines. There are many plant-based medicines that are being used to get similar effects.

blog comments powered by Disqus