After an action-packed weekend in the breathtaking Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina, we are excited to be back in the clinic and share the details of our trip! We enjoyed a beautiful drive, mountain views, a six-mile hike along the Green River, learned new techniques, and partook in our favorite tradition—visiting the Asheville Herb Festival. It was quite a refreshing stay and an excellent change of scenery!
The 32nd annual Asheville Herb Festival was a blast as usual. Plant-lovers rejoice even at the first step into the door! We visited some of our favorite booths from years prior, such as: Mountains to Sea, Red Moon Herbs, Sister of Mother Earth, and Lunar Whale Herbs.
Our favorite things about herb fest are the creativity in how things are planted (they even offer workshops about this!), as well as the many rare plant varieties offered. They even have an eclectic collection of garden décor. We purchased some amazing finds such as: seasonings for cooking such as ramp salt and magic garlic dust, and a morning pick-me-up adaptogenic coffee blend (to keep the jitters at bay, and a calm mind through the day). We also collected some lovely ashwagandha, Jiao Gu Lian (aka poor man’s ginseng), arnica, patchouli, and St. John’s Wort plants—just to name a few. Look for these incredible and unique finds available for purchase at our locations.
While the rest of the crew spent time in Saluda, Hendersonville, and Asheville, JennyMarie Greenough, LAc traveled to Black Mountain to attend the NCSAAM Spring CEU event to expand her knowledge and learn new techniques. She took in lots of valuable information about acupuncture neurology and the latest research on how scalp acupuncture points correlate to the actual regions of the brain beneath them. For about 20 years, it appeared that some of these acupuncture points were "close" but not actually over the exact region; but a more refined understanding of the brain has actually validated the location of those points. Furthermore, fMRI with acupuncture has shown both scalp and distal points do have the ability to activate these regions of the brain. She learned a wealth of clinical refinements that will improve our ability to help people with TBI and post-concussive issues with more focused treatments.
The biggest "aha" of the weekend was learning the correlation between dysfunction of the autonomic nervous system and Mast Cell Activation Syndrome, long-haul COVID, chronic Lyme, and other puzzling, complex conditions. So far, a survey of some of our more difficult cases in the office has shown all of these have some history of severe concussion or whiplash and JennyMarie is excited to bring this new lens to our treatment approaches. JennyMarie continues her study of these subjects with some additional research into specific nutrition and herbal protocols to address these issues.
We’ve always joked about needing a clone (or two) of Jenny-Marie, and our desperation kicked in realizing she would miss out on the herb festival and gem mining fun while she was busy learning in Black Mountain. Her husband, Charlie had the fantastic (and hilarious) idea of bringing the next best thing to a clone—a cardboard cutout! So Jenny-Marie still managed to “hang out” with some of the Herb Fest vendors, visit our favorite gem mine, and even pose for a few pictures! Cardboard Jenny-Marie may just have to tag along to the gem shows with Mary in a couple of weeks! Check out our Facebook page to see more fun pics!
It was a lovely trip full of learning and adventure, but we sure are glad to be back in Kentucky continuing doing what we love—providing natural, compassionate, and effective healing solutions to our community.
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