We’re thrilled to welcome Danzhu Mowat to the BodaHealth team! Danzhu is a Registered Acupuncturist, TCM Herbalist and Tai Qi and Qi Gong teacher. Read on to learn about her interesting background and healing philosophy.
Jeda Boughton: Hi Danzhu, thank you so much for joining me today. I appreciate you taking the time to chat with me about your practice. Can you tell me a bit about your journey into acupuncture and the field of Chinese Medicine? What initially piqued your interest?
DM: I have to say my journey into acupuncture and the field of Traditional Chinese Medicine is linked with me practicing and teaching Tai Chi. I have been practicing Tai Chi for over 30 years, and had been teaching Tai Chi and Qi Gong for about 20 years in Winnipeg, Manitoba.
Traditionally Chinese martial arts, Tai Chi, Qi Gong and Traditional Chinese Medicine are in the same family. If you want to be good at Chinese martial arts, you need to understand the human body. If you want to be the best Traditional Chinese Doctor you wish, you need to practice and enhance the internal Qi.
One day, Dr. Shaoli Shi, a well-known TCM doctor in Winnipeg, asked me “would you like to work at my clinic for a short period of time using your vacation time? You can see with your own eyes.” I feel so lucky that I did. Because the first day working at her clinic totally changed my mind. I met a professor who works at Cancer Care Manitoba, who I happen to know through work. He was surprised to see me there. Then he told me his story. He had an autoimmune system disorder for years, and had been seeing numerous specialists. In the end, the answer to him was he had to live like that for the rest of his life. He listened to one of his friends and visited Dr. Shi. He felt better after each treatment of acupuncture and TCM herbs, and in a few months, he was completely healed. That was only one of the many stories I had heard that day.
JB: What a fantastic introduction to Chinese medicine! Can you tell me a bit more about Tai Chi, do you still practice?
A: Tai Chi is like a moving meditation. A slow motion with sequenced movements. I still practice Tai Chi regularly.
JB: What kind of work did you do before you got into Chinese medicine and became an acupuncturist?
DM: Before I started practicing acupuncture, I had worked as an IT specialist and a network administrator at different companies. And then worked at the University of Manitoba Medical School as an IT administrator, mainly in the Digital Pathology field.
JB: So you were already in a kind of healthcare field. You mention that “Our body and mind possess an innate potential to heal”. Does this belief come from working with Tai Chi and Qi Gong?
DM: Through practicing and teaching Tai Chi, I’ve seen people healed from different sicknesses which doctors announced there’s no way they could help. I’ve been searching for the answers on how people heal from sicknesses. Then came to this conclusion: we are all born with magical healing power. For example, most of us have had the experience of a small cut on our skin; without any treatment, the cut heals 100%. I believe not only a cut on your skin, but also your body can heal—your body can heal a lot more than we know. One of my acupuncture teachers in China said, “If your body has the ability to create a lump, then your body has the ability to remove it”. I totally agree with her.
Once a patient told me during an acupuncture treatment, “I noticed this lump on top-left of my left breast for 3 months, I forgot to tell you, and I haven’t told my family doctor either”. I told her she should tell her family doctor and have this checked. In the meanwhile, I asked her if she’d like me to work to make the flow of her body a little stronger and see if anything could happen. She agreed. The Lump was about 1.5×3.5cm in size with rough non-smooth edges. After inserting acupuncture needles and stimulating them for a couple minutes, the lump shrank into a peanut size. The patient could feel it when I applied touch. She had needles on her hands, so she could not check by herself at the time. After retaining needles for about 30 minutes, I removed the needles on her hands first, and asked her to massage the peanut-sized lump. I stimulated the needles at the same time. She started to yell out loud, “it’s a lentil size now”, another couple minutes later, she yelled again, “it vanished!”. The patient asked me what the lump was, and how it disappeared. All I could say was, I had tried to unblock the channels, regulating and promoting the flow of Qi-Blood in your body. Your own body did the healing.
JB: Wow, that’s an incredible story! How exactly do Tai Chi and Qi Gong techniques relate to treating your patients with Acupuncture?
DM: I believe when I provide acupuncture treatments to people, my body and the acupuncture needles become the media, transmitting the energy from the universe to the patient. Human bodies all come with their own energy field, but all are different, with different frequencies. You may feel different when you are getting close to different people. Some may make you feel nervous, anxious, but others may make you feel calm and happy.
JB: Are there any specific injuries, imbalances or pain that your style of treatment works really well for, such as fertility, pain, hormone issues or skin?
DM: As I had mentioned before, that lump magically disappeared. Nodes along the neck, shoulders, and even abdomen, can be softened or even removed in one treatment. In addition:
- Insomnia doesn’t have to accompany you forever, usually people feel the difference after one treatment.
- Headaches can be gone instantly. Sometimes long-term chronic headaches may take multiple sessions, but usually you should feel the difference after one treatment.
- Male and female sexual function can be improved with acupuncture treatment.
- Fertility issues can be more effective when combining acupuncture and TCM herbs.
- Acupuncture treatment is very effective to help you become free of menstrual cramping too.
- I’ve also noticed lots of people living with skin issues for years, and they didn’t know acupuncture or TCM herbs can help them be free of the irritating skin problems.
- Acupuncture and TCM herbal medicine are very effective for people who suffer from emotional and mental issues.
- I also use acupuncture to help with physical or emotional restlessness and even tremoring hands, legs, even tongues.
- Another focus of mine is cosmetic acupuncture for deep wrinkles on the face; acupuncture can help take care of that too.
JB: What other types of courses or education have you completed?
DM: I studied Qi gong with acupuncture from Wu, Hongde from Taiwan.
Fertility acupuncture combined with TCM herbs from Tan Yong from China
I’ve also done extensive study in Cosmetic acupuncture with Cui Lanying; and Zhang Ying from China
JB: The cosmetic acupuncture sounds interesting, I’d love to hear more about that sometime too! When we first met you also mentioned to me that you have done a lot of treatment for eyesight and eye health, can you tell me more about that? Where did you do your training and what were the circumstances around that?
DM: A female patient in her 70s, was diagnosed for macular degeneration over 10 years ago. She was bleeding inside the eye and that made vision dim, later she was declared legally blind. She was advised by her ophthalmologist that her eyesight deterioration could be slowed down – maintained at the current level but not recovered. She was given eye injection treatments directly into her eyeball once a month at a point.
Then she started acupuncture treatments, and the bleeding in the eye slowly got better. The frequency of her eye injections were reduced from once a month to once every two months, then once every six months and then she didn’t need any injections for over a year. Due to COVID, she stopped acupuncture treatments for about two months, and her ophthalmologist told her that one eye started bleeding again. When she started acupuncture treatments with me again, she always noticed the eyes felt better and brighter after each treatment.
One day I listened to Dr. Weidong Yu’s talk regarding TCM and eye health. He specializes in treating Retinitis Pigmentosa with acupuncture and TCM herbs. I thought if he is good at treating Retinitis Pigmentosa, he should know how to help people with macular degeneration. So I contacted him, and he agreed to treat my patient. With my patient’s suggestion, Dr. Yu was nice enough to agree to allow me to observe the treatments. Lucky me! I was able to follow the series of treatments for half a year.
At first this patient was not able to see the top “E” from the eye chart, but later she could read more than four lines over 3 meters away. She is finally able to play cards with her husband and friends, and she can write again. She was so excited, and she has been continuing to email me her diaries and then later poems… I feel so happy for her!
I have been using the methods I had learnt from Dr Yu treating other eye issues, the results are almost always positive. These include: dry eyes, tearing eyes, itchy eyes. I have been continuously tracking updates and studying in the TCM ophthalmology field. Sometimes with just one treatment, people’s eye vision can improve one or two lines on the eye chart.
JB: Wow, that’s an incredible story. Lucky for that patient that she found you! Other than Acupuncture, Tai Chi and Qi Gong, do you use any other tools in your practice?
DM: Along with acupuncture needles I also do fire cupping and Gua Sha.
JB: Do you work with pregnancy and fertility? What kind of postnatal work do you do?
A: I have done training in fertility, and I look forward to working with more pregnancy and fertility patients at BodaHealth.
JB: What kinds of things do you do for yourself to stay fit and healthy?
A: Good sleep. Good food. Good workout. Regular Tai Chi, Yoga, Meditation. Happy family environment. Helping others. Smile when I can.
JB: Yes, smiling is important, even with the mask on. You have so many skills, what’s next for you professionally? Are you planning on doing additional studies or courses or do you want to evolve in a particular area with your practice?
A: I usually flow with how my heart feels. I liked math and physics in school, so studying and working in the computer field was something easy for me to do. I’ve always enjoyed sports, Tai Chi and Qi Gong are something that naturally draw me in. As I get older, I like to read things more related to health.
I enjoy feeling calm, peaceful and grounded, and having control of my own health, physically and mentally. I feel happier if I can help people around me to be happier and healthier. So anything that can help me to gain more power to achieve those goals, I’d love to pursue.
I’ll continue to learn to practice in ways that are more natural, less invasive and achieve lasting results. I keep my heart open to all opportunities.
JB: It’s been great chatting with you and learning so much about you and your practice. I am excited about all the skills you bring to BodaHealth! On a closing note, is there anything else you would like to tell people?
A: Feel in your heart, find things you love to do and make you smile.
Danzhu uses a variety of healing techniques and methods to achieve optimal results for her patients. She treats a wide variety of physical, emotional and reproductive health issues, as well as providing cosmetic acupuncture. Danzhu approaches her treatment sessions with the intention of helping each patient gain awareness of their own inner wisdom and healing power.
To learn more about Danzhu, visit her full bio here and stay tuned for more Practitioner Spotlight interviews from the BodaHealth team.