Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Tea and Health

After hiking the Great Wall our feet were maybe a little sore and blistered. The tour had scheduled a stop at the national athletic medical training center. Doctors at this facility usually only treat Chinese national athletes with traditional Chinese medicine.They said that they would be giving us free foot massages so that we could tell the world about Chinese medicine and the holistic health benefits. Supposedly, the foot has pressure points that can affect all of the major organs in the body.

In actuality, we were brought into the facility to be guinea pigs for the medical students so they could practice their skills. I don't know how I feel about being a guinea pig but I'm not gonna say no to a free foot massage. I guess it was a win-win-win scenario. The jury is still out about Chinese medicine.

I private tutored an adult student studying Chinese medicine. I don't know if she had a hard time expressing herself in English or if she really didn't know that much about her field of study, but when probed she always had trouble explaining Chinese medicine.

While at the health center in China, a medical palm reader diagnosed our bodies by looking at our palms. Curiously, no one was deemed healthy. I was diagnosed with major liver problems and others had problems that ranged from intestinal to hormonal. It is a good sales pitch. Captive audience having their feet massaged being told they might have terminal illnesses and should shell out money for herbal remedies.We also went to a Chinese tea shop which was much more to my liking than the health clinic. We sampled a variety of teas, my favorites of which were lychee and oolong.Which do you prefer massages or tea? (Not that either are remotely related and require you to choose one over the other.)


Alex said...

While I have long suspected that most traditional medicines are about 5% effective and about 95% hooey, I have never discounted the value of a good free foot rub.

I think the palm-reading diagnosis is especially interesting. There is an old saying that you never ask a barber if you need a haircut. I guess the chinese interpolation is that you never ask a doctor if you are sick...

Dad said...

As we must account for every idle word, so we must for every idle silence.

Time is an herb that cures all diseases.

Not Chinese medicine, but good enough for Ben F.