October – Fall 2021 tips and news!

RTW eShop collage


  • Fall self care at home and our eShop
  • Vitamin D
  • Did You Know…


We are well into the fall and I am hoping by now you have the scarves and socks on to keep your Yang Qi energy strong! This helps your overall immune system when our vital life force is warm, because it makes it stronger and more able to flow and reach all places in our body to support.

Fall is associated with the Metal element or phase in Chinese metaphysics, and is connected primarily to the Lung and Large Intestine organ channel. This is the time in natural law the Qi contracts and recedes, compacting our energy to get ready for storage and reserves to take us through the winter. Now is the time to refine and systematically put things in place that will make slowing down and conserving our energy an easy process in the winter. Create easy systems so there is less work and drain on you in the winter. Speaking of self-care…

We have a new online shop open!

In order to help facilitate self-care at home and less running around to find the classical items, we developed a new online shop! See more details below and start your journey of doing what you can at home with your health. (while supporting small businesses and less running around!)

Our eShop is lovingly inspired by the traditions of Chinese medicine and medicinal care at home. These are tools that many East Asian families grew up with!

As an active child, my grandma used to grab my sprained ankle and apply the Zheng Gu Shui liniment on. I thought it was smelly but yet, was always amazed at how quickly it felt better by the next day. I would say I tolerated all her tricks – the Gua Sha tool with Ba Fa Yao liniment for muscle aches and mosquito bites, Tiger Balm to stimulate areas of my body and reduce aches and pains. Little did I realize until I was older, how effective they were. There must be a reason why they have lasted as popular items until this day. 

Here are some quick tips on how to use each. More details online here: https://redtreewellness.ca/shop/ and ask us more next time you are in the clinic! 

  • Zheng Gu Shui Healing Liniment: For the temporary relief of aches and pains of muscles and joints associated with strains, sprains, and arthritic or rheumatic pain. 
  • Ba Fa Yao – White Flower Analgesic Balm: Temporary relief of minor muscular aches and pain, and itching of minor skin irritations such as mosquito bites. A good base for Gua Sha applications.
  • True Essence Wellness – Cold Sore Gel: One of our favourite products! True Essence Wellness helps for cold sores in a natural way. Cooling and healing, especially when applied in the early stages of eruption.
  • True Essence Wellness – Bruise and Wound Gel: One of our favourite products and should be in every first aid kit! Excellent for bruises.
  • Fascia Buddy silicone cup: Easy to apply, easy to move, and easy to remove. Achieve a strong suction without the need for hand pumps or fire, making them easy and safe to use. Excellent for static and massage cupping techniques.
  • Gua Sha tools – stones and resins (shapes of heart, shark fin, rabbit and arch): Gua means to scrape and Sha means redness or swelling. Gua Sha techniques involve the use of instruments to apply pressure or scape the skin to promote the extravasation of blood and fluids to promote normal circulation and metabolic processes. Gua Sha tools are handmade, and composed of 100% high quality, amethyst/rose quartz/jade or a resin. Stones include a number of mineral elements that are beneficial to the human body and skin. The cooling quartz provides an ultra smooth feeling on the skin. Use on all areas of the body for lymphatic drainage or releasing knots and tight muscles on area such as: face, neck, back, and legs.
  • Stone Medicine pendants: Various stones for helping energy harmony on a daily basis. Stones range from protective and calming such as amethyst, clear quartz, rose quartz, and absorbers of negative and EMF energy such as tourmaline.
  • Coming soon: Tiger Balm and Jade Rollers.

Our YouTube video channel has our Tea Talks on how-to use the Gua Sha tools and Cupping: https://www.youtube.com/c/RedTreeWellnessCa

Try us out for the next month with our anniversary coupon of 15% off: redtree15.



Are you getting enough Vitamin D?

The sunshine vitamin comes from 3 main sources: 

  1. Foods – fortified or naturally occurring such as in fatty fish, liver
  2. A supplement – D3 form is active
  3. From the sun (factors that limit – skin color, obesity, sunscreen and clothing coverage)

Why is it important?

Having adequate levels will prevent fractures and weak bones, strengthen immunity and improve heart health.6

Nearly 90% of people have inadequate vitamin D from food sources. Food sources and the Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) does not provide enough to prevent deficiency.1

A recent study reveals that nearly 1/3 of Americans and 1/2 of Canadians are moderate to severely deficient in Vitamin D.2

Sadly, Canadians are at a higher risk than people in the US, due to living at higher latitudes and having less direct exposure to sunlight.  

Also, there are medical conditions that give additional risk to low Vitamin D (see below for list), and in this case, I highly encourage increased supplementation.

So what is a safe dose to take?

I recommend the upper limit of 1-4000 iu/day during winter months if Vitamin D levels are within normal, in order to stay normal.  My dose recommendation depends on their Vitamin D status, general health and if any additional risk factors that lead to deficiency.4

How can you find out your Vitamin D levels?

BC MSP does not offer routine screening, as it is expensive, and there is wide-deficiency across the population. GP’s recommend supplementation without testing or follow-up. You can ask your GP or ND to order 25 (OH) Vitamin D, but it is an out-of-pocket expense.

Who is at risk?3

  • Pregnant women, breastfeeding mother’s – upper limit recommendation is 4-6000iu/day 4
  • Breastfed infants where mom has low Vitamin D
  • Older adults 
  • People with limited sun exposure
  • People with darker skin tone 
  • People with conditions that limit fat absorption -liver disease, cystic fibrosis, celiac disease, Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis
  • People who are obese or have undergone gastric bypass – Higher BMI (body mass index) of 30 requires higher doses of vitamin D because subcutaneous fat sequesters more of the vitamin D, preventing it from reaching the rest of the body.

If you are at risk for low vitamin D and unsure what dose is adequate and for how long, you can book online for a consultation. I am more than happy to provide guidance.

Dr. Kathy Dang ND, RAc

Naturopathic Physician and Registered Acupuncturist


  1. https://www.canada.ca/en/health-canada/services/food-nutrition/healthy-eating/vitamins-minerals/vitamin-calcium-updated-dietary-reference-intakes-nutrition.html 
  2. Amrein, K., Scherkl, M., Hoffmann, M. et al. Vitamin D deficiency 2.0: an update on the current status worldwide. Eur J Clin Nutr 74, 1498–1513 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41430-020-0558-y
  3. Nair, Rathish, and Arun Maseeh. “Vitamin D: The “sunshine” vitamin.” Journal of pharmacology & pharmacotherapeutics vol. 3,2 (2012): 118-26. doi:10.4103/0976-500X.95506
  4. https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/VitaminD-HealthProfessional
  5. Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism. https://academic.oup.com/jcem/article/96/7/1911/2833671
  6. National Institute of Health (NIH). https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/VitaminD-HealthProfessional/


Did you know… 

Lastly we finish off with our traditional clinic FYI’s:

  • Amethyst Quartz: Good for balancing spirit, enhancing your overall Qi, meditative spiritual awareness and aura. Cools the skin and calms the mind.
  • Clear Quartz: Enhances our Wei-Defensive Qi level, Lung system and boundaries.
  • Rose Quartz: Warms our Yang Qi and enhances circulation of Qi. 
  • Jade: Cools and strengthens. Protective Qi energy.
  • Tourmaline: Absorbs negative Qi and EMF energy.
  • Essential Oil blends are privately designed and made exclusively for Red Tree Wellness by one of our Reiki Master and Chemistry professor colleagues.
  • Argan Oil by Saadia Organics is a local Vancouver company whose relatives in Morocco hand make these therapeutic grade oils.
  • Our Fascia Cups are designed by a local Vancouver company.
  • Remember to check out our Youtube Channel – https://www.youtube.com/c/RedTreeWellnessCa

We wish you an easy fall.

Yours in good health and happiness,

Dr. Sonia F. Tan, DAOM and the Red Tree Wellness team


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