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Group 1 – Sympathetic Dominance

Discussion for Patient: Sympathetic Dominance

The autonomic nervous system is a principal regulator of metabolism. It is comprised of both the sympathetic and parasympathetic systems. The sympathetic system is designed for fight or flight and thus favors the muscular system and the body’s ability to respond physically with increased performance in threatening situations. Its balancing counterpart, the parasympathetic nervous system, is designed for promoting digestion, keeping the mucus membranes moist, and promoting the day to day management of the internal workings of the body.

Sympathetic types tend to have high energy, an aggressive personality, weak digestion, thy skin, and excel-lent concentration. They tend to be tall, thin, have narrow shoulders, wider hips, and be underweight. They build muscle easily and tend to crave carbohydrates. They are prone to osteoporosis, infections, angina/heart disease, cancer, acute arthritis, diabetes, gallbladder attacks, ulcers, glaucoma, and gingivitis.

From the standpoint of health, it is important to have balance in the autonomic nervous system. This equilibrium allows for optimal digestion and metabolism, which are keys to good health.

SP: Symplex F or M, Organically-Bound Minerals

MH: Withania Complex

Notes on General Support

Organically-Bound Minerals complement Symplex F and M in a sympathetic dominant individual as they restore balance to the overall autonomic nervous system by supporting the parasympathetic system. The alkaline ash minerals of Organically-Bound Minerals make tissue more responsive to the parasympathetic system, helping to bring the two systems into balance. Dr. Henry Hanover teaches us to respect the relationship between the autonomic nervous system and the endocrine axis. For this reason, supporting the glands most affected by sympathetic dominance is recommended. Symplex F or M is named for sympathetic dominance. These protomorphogen combinations support the pattern of endocrine stress associated with sympathetic dominance, and enhance glands stressed by sympathetic output. Excessive sympathetic response fatigues the pituitary, thyroid, adrenals and/or the gonads (ovaries or testes). It should not be assumed that there is an anatomic separation between the sympathetic and the parasympathetic system. Each gland shares innervation from both arms of the autonomic system. The differentiation is biochemical, and, as such, supportive therapy for sympathetic dominance may overlap supportive therapy for parasympathetic dominance. Melvin Page, DDS used circumferential measurements of the forearms and calves to determine which gland was likely to fail under stress. For example, individuals with relatively thick ankles were most likely to experience thyroid imbalances, while those with relatively large mid-calves had pituitary tendencies, etc. Page also observed that these tendencies were often manifested at puberty or the change of life (menopause for women and andropause for men). It is important to remember that using a protornorphogen cannot cause hyperstimulation of a gland or organ (see “endocrine” discussion).

Nutritional Comments

The parasympathetic system promotes digestion. It is the dominant nervous system in relaxation and sleeping. We see the effects of these two nervous systems in our daily life as well as in nature. For example, lions, after feeding, become sleepy — parasympathetic dominance, i.e., digestive mode. When lions are alert and stalking, the sympathetic nervous system dominates their autonomic nervous system in preparation for the chase. A healthy person is able to appropriately engage the parasympathetic and the sympathetic nervous systems without experiencing overstimulation to the point that the nervous system becomes a hindrance, rather than a help, in accomplishing a given task. The parasympathetic and sympathetic systems must be regulated to an appropriate degree and, in time, with need of the environment. Sometimes, an individual may need to be 100% parasympathetic; sometimes 40%-60% parasympathetic/sympathetic. Environmental circumstances determine the appropriate percentages, i.e., is the body trying to digest a steak or is there a lion at the door? The nervous system must be able to swing between parasympathetic and sympathetic demands. Problems begin when the body shifts into a more permanent state of dominance in either ANS branch.

The sympathetic division exits through the thoracolumbar spine — look for misalignment or tenderness in these regions. A common finding in individuals with an autonomic imbalance (Groups I and 2) is an indication of excessive reactions in both Groups 1 and 2. The more out of balance (i.e., sicker) the person is, the more indications are found in each group. These findings denote that the person’s autonomic system is unable to be engaged to the appropriate degree and, in time, with the environment. Typically, the sicker a person is, the further away he/she falls from homeostasis in either direction, all the more so over time.

Although it is very rare, a patient may be primarily Group 1 or 2. If this occurs, it is extremely important to address it as primary in a practitioner’s nutritional intervention. For example, parasympathetic nerves constrict the bronchi and promote mucus secretion. Sympathetic nerves dilate the bronchi. In a dry situation (e.g., desert environment), therefore, a healthy person would bring his/her parasympathetic side to the fore-front to allow for increased moisture. If the parasympathetic is compromised, the mucus membranes become dry and susceptible to irritation with features of allergies or bronchitis (hypoadrenal failure). A clear example of this is in the case of asthma, where there is parasympathetic dominance — an adrenal collapse. When you support adrenals with adrenal protomorphogens (B6-Niacinamide, Cataplex C, etc.), asthma becomes just a functional failure, not disease/pathology of the body.

Payment Policy

  1. Service is payable upon the completion of each treatment.
  2. The cost of treatments does not include herb prescription.
  3. If your insurance denies payment, you will be responsible for each bill.
  4. Cancellation of an appointment requires 24 hours notice or the standard cost of the appointment may be applied to a missed or cancelled visit.

Welcome Letter

Welcome to my practice!

I look forward to serving you and building a collaborative relationship that will benefit you now and for many years to come.

I rely heavy on a web-based system like this one to minimize the tedium and expense of paperwork, so I can focus on my patients. This system also helps us communicate more effectively and efficiently!

I would like to invite you to take a quick tour of the site to familiarize yourself with its menu structure and the resources and information that are available to you. For all first timers to the site, I like to request that you complete the followings:

  1. My Profile. That step provides me all the requisite information about you, how to get hold of you, insurance details, etc. This is particularly important if you plan on using insurance to cover your treatments.
  2. Initial Intake Form. Arguably there is not a single document that would help me get to know your health history and status as a unique human being as the Initial Intake Form (IIF). The IIF might seem boring, but it is without a doubt one of the most important forms for your medical providers. So fill it out at the comfort of your own space before we meet in person for the first time.
  3. Standard Process System Survey Form.  This form is written by Standard Process, an organic whole foods nutrition/herbal supplier based in Wisconsin. This is an another useful form, especially if you are interested in more nutrition-based therapy.  This form is optional. 

Also, this site is a perpetual work in progress. If at anytime you wish to communicate with me directly, please feel free to shoot me an email or call me at 415.659.9974. I will try to get back to you as quickly as I can.

I look forward to being your trusted personal acupuncturist/herbalist and helping you meet your health goals.


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SH Howard Ho, MS Eng, MS TCM

California License #: AC-15703

Welcome to Meridian Acupuncture & Herb Clinic

Welcome to my practice!  I am dedicated to helping you feel better, healthier, and happier.

Acupuncture and herbal medicine are World Health Organization (WHO) recognized modalities to have helped millions of people attain better health around the world. If you have been struggling with injuries, illnesses, allergies, or pains that have not improved with conventional medicines, it is time to check out how acupuncture and herbal medicine can make the difference for you!

As a patient, I have first-hand experience of the healing powers of acupuncture and herbal medicine. As a practitioner, I relentlessly seek out ways that would bring the most benefits to my patients by integrating knowledge and practices from different cultures and disciplines.

To find out how acupuncture and herbal medicine can help you, contact me. I would be happy to discuss how I can make a difference for you.

Informed Consent to Acupuncture Treatment

I hereby request and consent to the performance of procedures on me (or on the patient named below, whom I am legally responsible for). These procedures are within the scope of practice of oriental medicine including, but not limited to, history-taking, orthopedic and neurological testing, acupuncture, electroacupuncture, indirect moxibustion, warm needle moxibustion, cupping, herbal prescriptions, and nutritional counseling, by SH Howard Ho, LAc and/or other licensed acupuncturists who now or in the future serve as back-up for SH Howard Ho, including those working at his clinic or office or any other office or clinic, whether signatories to this form or not.

I understand and am informed that in the practice of acupuncture there are some risks to treatment, including, but not limited to, bruising, tingling or soreness near the needling sites that may last a few days. There have been instances reported of fainting, infections and scarring. There have also been instances reported of spontaneous miscarriage and pneumothorax. I understand that some herbs and acupuncture points may be inappropriate during pregnancy and I will inform the acupuncturist of any possibility that I might be pregnant. I will notify the acupuncturist if I take steroids or anti-coagulants or if I have an implanted pacemaker or a prosthetic heart valve. If I experience any gastrointestinal upset or apparent allergic reactions to an herbal prescription, I will stop taking the herbs and inform the acupuncturist.

I do not expect the acupuncturist to be able to anticipate and explain all possible risks and complications, and I wish to rely on the acupuncturist to exercise judgment during the course of treatment which the acupuncturist thinks at the time, based upon the facts then known, is in my best interest.

In Summary, I understand:

  1. Acupuncture and the Related Modalities can be therapeutic, relaxing and reduce muscular tension, it is not a substitute for biomedical examination, diagnosis and treatment. I will immediately inform the practitioner if I experience any pain or discomfort during the session so that the treatment may be adjusted to my level of comfort.
  2. Acupuncture and the Related Modalities should not be done with certain medical conditions and I affirm that I have answered all questions pertaining to medical conditions and history truthfully.
  3. It is my responsibility to notify the Acupuncturist of any medical, billing or address changes.
  4. I am free to withdraw my consent and discontinue treatment at any time.
  5. Neither Meridian Acupuncture & Herb Clinic nor the Acupuncturist guarantee treatment results. The Acupuncturist will explain treatment provided and will answer any questions I may have.

I have read the above and hereby give consent to Shih Hao Howard Ho, LAc., to proceed with treatment.


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