Forget Spooning, Let's Cup!



Jennifer Aniston and Gwyneth Paltrow are not afraid to let folks know that they’ve been cupped. They’ve even been seen at public events in backless gowns, revealing what appears to be a bruise in a perfect circle, the temporary marks of cupping — a traditional healing art in Eastern medicine used in China for thousands of years, from the Qing dynasty onward.

During a cupping treatment, glass cups that look like miniature fish bowls are heated inside to produce a vacuum. The heated cups are then placed open-ended on the surface of the patient’s skin. The suction forces the cup to adhere to the skin, pulling the body’s surface tissue up into the cup, which provides the therapeutic effect and the odd circular bruising afterward.

Cupping can reduce muscular tension and aches, treat cellulite or vein problems, and even help relieve digestive problems, blood pressure issues, and skin conditions, according to Dr. Robin Fan, an instructor in the acupuncture and Oriental medicine program of National University of Health Sciences in Chicago.

“Cupping is actually very comfortable,” Fan says. “And once patients receive the treatment, they often request it each time they come in. [Because] we can apply the technique to key acupuncture points, it can be therapeutic for almost any health condition if done by a properly trained practitioner.”

Different sizes of cups treat different areas of the body, and create different levels of suction.

While cupping is generally considered safe, there are certain conditions where cupping should not be used. “We do not advise cupping for any patient taking blood thinning medication, or who has a sunburn, wound, skin ulcer, or recent trauma,” Fan says, adding that cupping is not generally recommended for children, and carefully used on pregnant women.

Be forewarned: Cupping leaves a temporary bruise. But according to enthusiasts, a little black-and-blue circle is well worth the potential health and cosmetic benefits.

Add your comment:
Medical Guide

Related Articles

Love Without Boundaries

The Coachella Valley is home to an impressive host of animal-centric organizations that make it their mission to help desert residents through interaction with trained, caring animals.

Where to Dine Out Locally on Your Diet

Here is a compilation of Coachella Valley establishments that fits your Paleo, Vegan or Juicing diets.

Agua Serena Spa Offers Skin Analysis to Aid Treatments

Dr. Richard Fox uses a VISIA complexion analysis machine as part of the skin treatment process at Agua Serena Spa at Hyatt Regency Indian Wells.

Putting Prevention First

Dr. Nicole Ortiz of La Quinta’s Live Well Clinic emphasizes natural, integrative techniques to achieve optimal health.

Brave New World

From the vastness of the smartphone universe to the cars we drive, technology’s reach defines our present. But one tech application is still coming of age — telemedicine.

Promotions + Contests

90 Days of Summer Romantic Palm Springs Getaway 2014

90 Days of Summer Romantic Palm Springs Getaway 2014

Experience the beauty, romance and excitement of the Palm Springs area when you enter to be the lucky winner of this romantic couple’s getaway
90 DAYS OF SUMMER Instagram Contest 2014

90 DAYS OF SUMMER Instagram Contest 2014

Win a fabulous Palm Springs weekend!

Win a fabulous Palm Springs weekend!

Each month, a first place winner will be selected to win a fabulous Palm Springs weekend!And, each month, three additional runners up will be selected to win a wonderful Palm Springs area Dining certificate!
2013/14 Best of the Best

2013/14 Best of the Best

Palm Springs Life’s annual Best of the Best. Readers tell us who their choice is for the “Best of the Best” of the Coachella Valley in over 40 categories.
Cartoon Caption Contest

Cartoon Caption Contest

Each month, we provide a vintage 1950’s cartoon illustrated by Alice Rovinsky. You are invited to submit a caption or vote for your favorite caption.
Pets on Parade 2014 Photo Contest

Pets on Parade 2014 Photo Contest

Enter your “Cutest Pet” photo in the Pets on Parade 2014 Photo Contest. Online users will be able to like the Cutest Pet photos from six (6) categories.