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Let's talk about the Urinary System. Chinese herbal medicine and food based medicine can offer a lot as support when something goes wrong here. This bodily system is often over looked until it is really creating uncomfortable symptoms, and by the time it gets our attention it often requires medical intervention. Think about a UTI, Kidney stones, spasmodic or painful bladder issues and so much more. If left unaddressed until you can't take it anymore all of this will most likely lead you down a very medicalized path to antibiotics, surgical procedures or other medications that can't address the underlying imbalance. Often, this kind of intervention will lead to recurrent problems and have undesired effects on other bodily systems, even though it might help with the immediate symptoms. Don't get me wrong, we all need to turn to these kinds of treatments sometimes but if we can act preventatively OR in tandem to correct the underlying issue, isn't that a more supportive option? We think so. From a Chinese Medicine perspective, caring for the urinary system (Kidneys, bladder, urinary tract, ureters, and urethra) is all about making sure that fluid is coming in and moving out efficiently. This ensures that no old fluid stays trapped, or moves out too slowly creating what we call "dampness". An inefficient or ineffective fluid metabolism means that instead of being eliminated completely and replaced as we drink fresh water, too much of that fluid is sticking around and becoming thick and turbid. The National Institute of Health defines interstitial fluid as, “ fluid found in the spaces around cells. It comes from substances that leak out of blood capillaries (the smallest type of blood vessel). It helps bring oxygen and nutrients to cells and to remove waste products from them. As new interstitial fluid is made, it replaces older fluid, which drains towards lymph vessels. When it enters the lymph vessels, it is called lymph. Also called tissue fluid.” So when our fluid metabolism systems aren’t working together to properly eliminate old interstitial fluid, the waste is not eliminated and it builds up. The resulting old interstitial fluid is what we call “dampness” in Chinese medicine. Basically an accumulation of unhealthy interstitial fluid. This dampness becomes the perfect environment for bacteria, virus or unwanted cell changes to thrive and take place. We want to do everything in our power to prevent or correct this situation. Using the wisdom of Chinese Herbal Medicine, Estuary herbs has created two products that help to flush out unwanted dampness from the body, strengthen the urinary system, and improve fluid metabolism. This has the effect of changing the internal environment of the body so that it no longer supports the growth and population of unwanted viruses or bacteria. This also means that the cells are surrounded in healthy interstitial fluid and are able to receive the nutrients they need for appropriate c ell division. That’s the complicated way of saying they are not absorbing toxicity from old interstitial fluid/dampness that could lead to cancerous cell changes over time. We don’t want that. It also means that symptoms of fluid retention such as edema and bloating can be reduced by improving the fluid metabolism. Because, in Chinese Medicine we always seek to correct or support the underlying imbalance in the body, when we work on that level we have the potential to ease numerous symptoms that might show up a little differently for everyone. Flush: Drinking Vinegar is designed to be used daily, or as needed to keep the body’s internal environment in balance, and clear out any unwanted dampness to prevent it from accumulating as you go. It is a tasty infused raw apple cider vinegar that includes ingredients traditionally used to support the urinary system in all of the ways described above. It is best taken at the first signs of symptoms, or used daily for people who have a tendency toward imbalances in the urinary system. We’ve gotten reports from people using this vinegar that it has been helpful to them when used with painful or spasmodic bladder symptoms, when struggling with kidney or bladder stones, urinary tract infection symptoms, and water retention. Free Flow: Chinese Herbal Concentrate is based off of the Classical Chinese Herbal Formula Zhu Ling Tang. It has been used to ease these same symptoms for thousands of years in Chinese herbalism. As a practitioner, I recommend this formula to patients with these same symptoms listed above when they are of a more sever or more urgent nature. This formula is not used as much preventatively in most cases as it is when one is having acute symptoms. Often patients will follow up with Flush Drinking Vinegar after the acute symptoms have resolved to support their urinary systems with the goal of prevention. Questions? Comments? Concerns? We love to hear from you. Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or find us on Instagram @estuaryherbs or facebook. As always, consult with your doctor if you are experiencing symptoms you are concerned about or considering taking herbal supplements. Estuary Herb products are not intended to replace necessary medical care from your doctor.