Chinese Health Tradition Based On Cultural Heritage In The Asian Americans

Submitted By kevclark
Words: 1571
Pages: 7

Health tradition based on cultural heritage in the Asian Americans. The Chinese health heritage is based on understanding their philosophies and religion of Taoism, which is the way of ultimate reality, the way of all native and the primeval law that coordinates all heavenly and earthly things. The Chinese sees the universe as one entity; each person has a function and should conform to the ways of nature. Failure to do so will result in wars, chaos with the end result being illnesses (Wallnofer & Von Rottaucher, 1972).
Ying and Yang has a lot to do with Chinese health, Ying represents inside of the body, it also represents matter that is static, things that are downward, descending, hypoactive and dull. Yang represents the surface of the body, also dynamic matter, positivity, brilliance and upward movement. It is believed that illness is a result of the disruption in harmony between Ying and Yang (Chan, 1998).
Health maintenance and protection include daily nutrition and ingestion of foods such as ‘thousand year eggs ‘daily. There are rules regarding food combinations and there are foods that are recommended to be eaten before or after certain life events such as childbirth and surgeries. Exercise is recommended daily such as Tai Chi. They believed that wearing of jade will bring health and that if it was to break or become dull, then misfortune would result. Amulets were hung over the door and on curtains to prevent evil spirits and protect health (Morgan, 1992)
Health restoration involves various interventions such as acupuncture, moxibustion, cupping, bleeding and Tui Na, also herbal remedies, traditional healers and Chinese pediatrics. Health beliefs for new Asian immigrants are different from those who were born in the United States from families that were already settled and established in the USA. In Chinatown currently do to overcrowding and poor working conditions with low wages, poor health continues to be a factor. Language and their culture continue to be a barrier for many Chinese. Many Chinese still prefer to be treated by Chinatown so-called physicians, which include traditional herbs.
Traditional Blacks believe that health is connected to the mind body and spirit and disharmony may be as result of demons or evil spirits, the cure being to exorcise them from the person’s body. Many ways were used to achieve this including voodoo. Traditional healers were normally women who had a lot of knowledge in the use of herbs and roots for treating sicknesses. The elderly were respected because they were seen as possessing superior knowledge and wisdom due to their long life. The blacks believed that the diseased were able to carry with them any possible illness of children by moving the child over the diseased body. They believed health is maintained through proper diet including nutritious meals and by having frequent bowel actions, therefore laxatives were regularly used. Therefore, having rest and a clean environment were also important. Decayed flesh was also dried until it looked like sponge and was often worn around the neck to avoid the contraction of infectious diseases. Cod liver oil was ingested and still is to prevent colds and boost immunity. At the beginning of the season, it is believed that persons were more likely to get ill, so molasses and sulphur were ingested in the spring. They did not visit their physicians frequently in regards to health prevention. Bracelets made of copper or silver were worn to avoid sickness. If for any reason the bracelet was removed or the surrounding skin became dark, then it was a sign of possible disease and necessary action was needed such as praying and improvement in diet.
Health restoration included home remedies and folk medicine such as mixing of turpentine a sugar to destroy worms and to rub onto the skin for back pains. The use of poultices which is made from potatoes is place over the affected area of the body. When the color of the