Reprinted from Acupuncture Today – October, 2003, Vol. 04, Issue 10
Color Light Therapy and Acupuncture
By Julianne Bien
The ancient Chinese and Greek healers may have lived thousands of miles apart, but they were thinking on a similar wavelength. The Greeks pioneered a form of color light therapy to help treat tuberculosis. Today, we know that the effectiveness of color light therapy is achieved by applying specific color light frequencies on the body’s acupuncture points, whereupon the energy is absorbed and distributed through the body along the same meridian system Chinese healers mapped out centuries ago. Acupuncture and color light therapy are the most complementary of treatment modalities – so much so that color therapy, when applied narrowly to certain symptoms, is often called color acupuncture. However, it is the broader, holistic application of color therapy, attacking the underlying (energetic) causes of emotional and physical disease, that offers patients the most promise. More and more acupuncturists are offering color light therapy in conjunction with acupuncture treatment. For patients, it’s easy to embrace a dual treatment approach that addresses both symptoms and their root causes, thereby offering the expectation of permanent relief.
Acupuncture and color light therapy share another distinction. In the past half-century, color light therapy, like acupuncture, has “crossed over” from the ancient and foreign to be embraced by more conventional medical practitioners in North America. Did you know that the U.S. military uses color light therapy in treating some chronic pain conditions? As soon as people hear that, color therapy becomes as mainstream as acupuncture.
It also helps speed acceptance that modern science is much more knowledgeable about how light therapy works. A human body is a virtual electromagnetic field. Any stimulation of the acupuncture points and portals with these two methods sends a current of information along the associated pathways, affecting the flow of life force.
All intercellular communications are based on light energy. Negative energy imbalances and blockages, caused by emotional and physical trauma and stress, build up in our electromagnetic field, where they can trigger emotional and physical disease. Modern color light therapy seeks to right the imbalances and unblock the blockages through the targeted application of specific colors. Today, the field of modern energy medicine includes different light treatments like color irradiation and low-intensity lasers. Color light therapy is proving beneficial for patients suffering from jetlag, and eating and mood disorders, including bulimia. In psychiatry, research has validated light therapy administered through the eyes as the most effective treatment for seasonal affective disorder. Color therapy is being invested for its potential in helping people with nonseasonal depression, persistent insomnia and difficulties adapting to shift work. Several decades ago, German researchers discovered that light energy taken in visually could reduce the frequency and severity of migraine headaches and reduce pain levels associated with some lung diseases. The breakthrough research of Nobel Prize nominee Fritz-Albert Popp in the 1970s established that all natural organisms emit light energy at the cellular level, and that all organic life absorbs light and processes it internally. Faint, color-coded broadcasts of the light energy that cells emit is the basis of intercellular communication in all living organisms.
Dr. Valerie Hunt of UCLA subsequently demonstrated how the body’s energetic emissions display chaotic changes before pathological conditions in the tissue are detected. This helped develop the main postulate of color light therapy: Ailments begin as energetic imbalances which, if detected in time, can be corrected through external, noninvasive means. It was a German naturopath, Dr. Peter Mandel, who transformed that knowledge into modern color light therapy. He discovered that when specific acupuncture points, reflex zones and other established grid systems in the body are irradiated with focused light beams of color, pain from some symptoms could be alleviated within minutes. His findings were followed by Russian researchers, who concluded that our bodies have channels of light that parallel the body’s 12 meridians.
Modern color light therapy uses these natural pathways to open blocked energy channels and dispel energy imbalances. Applications of specific color light travel the meridian system at light speed with information-specific particles to replenish the natural energy and restore cellular balance. Each color has a different frequency or energy vibration pattern and different therapeutic uses. For instance, blue is cool and sedating; red is hot and stimulating; orange is warm and encouraging; and green is balancing and calming. A trained therapist would apply the cool colors to inflammations, and the hot colors to stimulate circulation.
Color light therapy can be used proactively to diffuse energy blockages before they lead to health problems, or it can be offered as a postacupuncture maintenance regime to keep recovered patients “in the pink.” Holistic color light therapy doesn’t treat specific muscles or organs, but addresses the integrated body, mind and spirit through its energy field to re-establish balance and harmony. Color light replenishes the body’s natural energy and gently restores balance in all cells. As a noninvasive, nontoxic healing modality, acupuncturists can even administer color therapy to individuals who are phobic about needles and thereby resistant to submitting to a full course of acupuncture treatments.
For thousands of years, acupuncture and color light therapy have shared similar approaches to human physiology. Both stimulate the body to heal itself; both have an understanding of the interconnectivity of cellular matter; and both can be used proactively as well as reactively. This has made them among the most complementary of healing modalities, but this complementary relationship can endure beyond the treatment phase. Acupuncturists can introduce a patient to color light therapy with the recommendation that the patient incorporate the techniques into a personal, long-term wellness strategy. If not an apple a day, then a brief color light therapy session a day, may be what keeps the doctor away. Pursuing healthy lifestyle choices and employing color light therapy to rebalance the inner life force can help keep us physically, emotionally and physically strong in our lifelong pursuit of longevity.