Heal a Torn Meniscus with Chinese Medicine
You can absolutely and completely heal a torn meniscus with Chinese medicine! Chinese medicine is good for everything, because it is a complete system of medicine that can deal with any health issue.
About 10 weeks ago (Nov 2016), I woke up one morning and my knee was very swollen, like the size of a large grapefruit. As I got out of bed every step was painful and every time I bent my left knee, I also felt sharp pain. Any kind of pressure on the knee or any twisting movement was met with a sharp pain. Upon palpating (touching) the medial (inner) part of my knee surrounding my patella (kneecap), it was very tender and painful.
What was strange is that I don’t remember any popping or any event where anything happened. Instead, I just woke up and it was very painful. So what does any person do that loves to play sports competitively? I played racquetball hard on it that day. The pain got three times worse. Silly me. My knee actually began to lock up, and I had to limp heavily on it for at least one week. I feared the worst, a torn meniscus. The meniscus is the rubbery cartilaginous disc that cushions your knee joint. Later a medical doctor friend of mine performed the McMurray Test on me and it was very painful, indicating the meniscus was in fact torn. An MRI wasn’t necessary, I knew it was torn and so did he.
I LOVE playing competitive racquetball and haven’t suffered a major sports injury in at least 10-15 years. Immediately, I was afraid because I knew it was something serious and frustrated because I knew I would have to take lots of time off to rest and mend. Even the thought of surgery had entered my mind because of how painful it was. Given the extent of my pain, everything seemed to indicate it was major tear. Many people that tear their meniscus opt to have surgery. But, I wanted to put Chinese medicine to the test first.
A brilliant book on Chinese medicine and sports injuries was written called A Tooth From a Tiger’s Mouth: How to Treat Your Injuries with Powerful Healing Secrets of the Great Chinese Warrior by Tom Bisio outlines a plan on how to best heal from such injuries, even if they are in the “white zone”, which doesn’t have as good of a blood supply at the “red zone” of the meniscus. Many people think that once you have torn a meniscus that you cannot heal naturally and that you must have surgery. This is not true. Chinese medicine has been healing sports injuries for thousands of years using nutrition, herbs, acupuncture and meditative emotional healing. Very specific things can be done to speed up the healing process exponentially. The same goes for other types of knee injuries, even if surgery is required first. Doing these things below can speed up healing in the knee and put you back on the court faster.
So without any further ado, here is what I did to heal.
- I rested. Many people continue to play sports when they tear a meniscus because they don’t listen to their body or know that they are going to have surgery anyway, so they figure there is not much harm. I don’t suggest this. It is tough for many competitive athletes to stop, but this is a necessity much of the time. I took off almost 3 months while I healed from this.
- Vitamin C. I took in between 15-20,000 milligrams of Now C Complex Powder per day (5,000mgs every 3-4 hours). The meniscus is made of cartilage. One the most important building blocks of cartilage is vitamin C. Cartilage needs other co-factors to be made, which is why other nutrients are key and will be discussed in just a moment. Vitamin C is water soluble and is very safe to consume in large quantities. If more than enough for the body is consumed you may get gassy or have loose stools, which is the indicator to cut back a little. Otherwise, this amount will be used up by the body. A great natural source of vitamin C is Camu Camu powder from Terrasoul.
- Glucosamine Synergy. Glucosamine is a foundational component of articular cartilage and is necessary for joint repair. This product differs greatly from a glucosamine product you may commonly buy at the store. It has many cofactors and other nutrients and synergistically work to bring out faster joint health and is much more effective that other regular glucosamine products. It is sourced from crab shells, so it is natural. A proprietary blend of boswellia, calcium, carrot, sweet potato, beet root, mushroom powder, flaxseed extract, and organ tissues all combine to make this product perfect for restoring joint health. If you would like this supplement please contact me for details.
- Chinese formula for rebuilding cartilage and lessening pain. However, I must state that many people want to just take a supplement without changing anything else in their diet and lives. This will render the formula or supplement much less useful. An ancient Chinese proverb is pure wisdom in this case: “He that takes medicine (herbs) and neglects diet, wastes the skills of the physician.” Diet is a large part of why knees and joints get week and are susceptible to injury in the first place.
- I consumed lots and lots of green leafy vegetables, along with many good quality plant fats and plant protein. I usually get my veggies through juicing them. I juice straight celery juice, which is amazing for the knees. I also commonly drink apple/carrot or apple/head of romaine/carrot or cucumber juice. The goal for me was to get almost 10 servings of vegetables per day. Buy a good juicer here.
- Acupuncture as frequently as possible. This is a must in treating this condition. Acupuncture affects a deeper level of healing in the body beyond the physical and is very powerful. Physical therapy is important, but in my professional opinion, acupuncture corrects the underlying problem. Some people try acupuncture once and then say it didn’t work. No one goes to the gym one time and expects to look like The Rock. The more acupuncture you get the better things will be. I needled around the knee and other acupuncture points mostly related to the liver and gallbladder channels, because these organs control the health of the muscles, tendons and sinews. The liver controls the muscles and tendons. The average liver in the USA today is so toxic and overburdened that is cannot do its job properly. Nearly everyone I meet has liver symptoms today. It is imperative to do a very complete cleansing of the liver if you want to have strong joints moving forward and correct the damage of the past. I have some great supplementation protocols to detoxify. When patients commit to coming more than once per week, I will usually discount the sessions because I am committed to them healing and want to make things as affordable as possible.
- Zheng Gu Shui (rectify bones liquid). This is an ancient family liniment recipe more than 500 years old for trauma in Chinese medicine. It not only helps the bones, but the tendons and cartilage. It has 4 cooling herbs that deal with inflammation and 4 other herbs for moving the blood (circulation) and warming the area. This is the original icy hot, but is all natural and doesn’t contain toxic added chemicals. Another good product for relieving pain that is excellent is CBD Pain Cream.
- Emotional Consciousness processing. This is the absolute most important part of healing most sports injuries. Our body parts are not inseparable from our emotions, our lives and the common things we feel about things and what affects us. Every injury has a context, a reason, and a purpose. The knee has “consciousness” or general negative emotions and thoughts associate with it, which is very important to know and understand especially if we are going to discover the root cause of why an injury manifested in the first place. Normally, injuries don’t just happen for no reason.
Inna Segal, who is a remarkably intuitive soul, writes in her book, The Secret Language of Your Body, that the following consciousness issues affect the health of the knees:
“Control, blame, judgment, anger, resentment, frustration, inflexibility. Feeling stuck. Difficulty dealing with a person, issue, or situation from the past. Confusion. Frozen desires and unfulfilled dreams. Unresolved family issues. Difficulty making decisions and keeping commitments. Fear of moving forward. A great need to know what will happen next.”
Take the first concept here. Are you a controlling person in general? In the context of sports, do you frequently have the mentality of needing to control an outcome in order to win? Are you at peace with losing or not playing well? Control always is breed from deep fears that we mostly carry around unconsciously. When I was younger, I use to play sports because if I won, I would feel good about myself, like I was good enough. If I lost, I felt like a loser and it would tap into a deep fear within me that I wasn’t good enough. This is a common struggle for many people. It is not winning or performing well so much as it is being reminded of how much we don’t feel like we are good enough (or some other concept backed by fear). Through the years, I have processed through memories related to this fear and now I play racquetball with a sense of joy and love, because it is wonderful to play and that is all. Consequently, playing with more peace and joy has caused me to be a much better player and to remain calm on the court most of the time.
Take each one of the above concepts and ask how they might apply to you. If you identify or resonate with something, clinically I use an emotional releasing tool to process through it and release these emotions from the body. Do you get angry frequently when you play sports? Do you have an emotional attachment about needing to win? Do you feel a loss of pride when you lose or feel pride when you win? Would you be able to set these things free?
When I tore my meniscus some emotional things came up for me that I needed to process through. Additionally, I had a quick recognition that this whole thing happened so that I could pay more attention to other things in my life that I had been neglecting. The rest and refocus was a very healing time for me and I am grateful for the re-shift in perspective.
The Main Source of Inflammation – Diet
It is critical at this point to talk a little more specifically on how diet affects the joints, weakening them to the point where injury is much more likely to occur. I frequently hear from people that they injured their joints or knee just because of the harshness of a sport on the knee or getting older or something like this. For the most part, I do not believe this. I am convinced, and the history of Chinese medicine also backs this up, that joint problems are usually much more than just overuse or “getting older”.
I think deteriorating joint health (and health in general) is a simple progression. Foods are eaten that are highly inflammatory leading to systemic inflammation or local inflammation, which leads to weakness and greater susceptibility to joint problems. It is that simple much of the time. If you have systemic inflammation and then are using a part of the body more harshly or repetitively than another, damage is more likely to occur in that spot. So what are the foods that do the most damage and cause inflammation? They are the foods that most Americans and even athletes eat regularly.
Dairy (milk, cheese, yogurt, kefir and cottage cheese), wheat (cereals, breads, pasta), soy (hidden in so many things), corn (hidden in so many things), refined sugar, pork, eggs, fried foods and alcohol ALL produce rampant inflammation all over the body. It is very rare to find someone that avoids all these things and has joint injury. Alternatively, everyone that I have talked to that has had a joint injury is usually consuming a good dose of all of these horrible foods. Honestly, I struggle with eating some of these things and during the time I injured myself, I had been consuming these things. I have now committed to not consuming these products at all and have consequently felt much better. Try removing ALL of these things from your diet for a couple weeks and then reintroduce them one at a time at a later date. I almost guarantee you your body will give you some crazy symptoms (especially digestive complaints like gas and bloating) to tell you how bad these foods really are.
People usually are not convinced that these foods are as destructive as they are. But, I see the horrible destruction these foods cause every day in the clinic. These are the foods that contribute primarily to cancer, heart disease, diabetes, brain diseases and other chronic health issues. When people remove them, I also see remarkable healing in people, not only from joint injury but from other health problems. These foods are horrible and should be avoided. Moderation is not the key in this case!
Consequently, vegetables are the most life giving foods on the planet and it is very common for me to hear from athletes that they only consume 1-2 servings of vegetables per day. Eating all the wrong foods above and consuming limited amounts of vegetables sets up the perfect storm for joint injury and other health problems. Athletes should consume tons of vegetables (6-10 servings per day), more than any other food group! Buy a juicer and start juicing.
With rest, acupuncture, herbal formulas, eating tons of different vegetables and some fruits, liniments and emotional processing, you can set up the perfect combination to heal from a torn meniscus and other joint related issues. My own mother was my first successful case of healing someone completely from a torn meniscus that had been verified with an MRI. She followed this plan faithfully for months, avoided surgery and to this day does not have pain in her knee (and she was 1000 miles away from me). My story is exactly the same. Try this route first and if after faithfully doing ALL of the above things for 3 months your knee still feels the same, then consider having surgery. If you do elect for surgery, all of my acupuncture colleagues can attest that having acupuncture frequently after surgery tremendously speeds up the time it takes to heal, often times twice or three times as fast. Other than acupuncture, everything that I have described here can be done over the phone through a phone consultation. Together, we can set up a perfectly detailed plan for you to follow so that you can start healing naturally. Call 407-255-0314 to set up your phone appointment now.