Podcast interview with Ivy Lee

This is one of my top two favorite interviews I’ve done with an acupuncturist. Ever.

Ivy Lee is the inspiring acupuncturist behind Luminae Wellness in Oakland, CA. She is wise and well-spoken, shares about the deep ways she loves to work with patients, the kind of marketing that works for her, and very compassionately answered some of my hard questions about cultural appropriation, the whitewashing of wellness, and how we can be better stewards of our medicine. She dropped so many inspiring gems of wisdom. I urge you to give it a listen…

AcuProsper podcast: acupuncturist interview with Ivy Lee of Luminae

Ivy Lee is the inspiring acupuncturist behind Luminae Wellness in Oakland, CA. In our conversation, we learn about how she became an acupuncturist (after being in finance), the deep ways she loves to work with her patients, and being Taiwanese and having grown up in America she brings a deep and thoughtful perspective on cultural appropriation in Chinese Medicine and the whitewashing of wellness.

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Here are a few of my favorite quotes of hers from our interview:

“People ask me how I became an acupuncturist, and I say that it was not my decision… it was more that that was how life guided me. And I think that having that heart alignment is really key in creating a practice because people will resonate with that… People will feel you instead of what you’re trying to be.” (11:30)

“When we’re learning practices from different places, understanding the culture, the people, their way of life, their perspective on health and the body, enables somebody to better understand the practice. We go through these four years of school, but that is just a foundation…. TCM is rooted in traditions and traditional ways of life, and I hope that we acupuncturists have the confidence to share that and about that way of life when we’re sharing about the medicine….. We are keepers of this lineage” (30:40)

“It’s important to be mindful of what you’re displaying and showing and is that matching your connection and level of understanding to the culture.”

“When our medicine is limited to Western terms and language, it’s boxed in. The expansiveness of our medicine isn’t conveyed in solely Western medicine terms.… We shouldn’t put on a pedestal making our medicine more western-medicine-like.” (35:35)

“I think the best marketing you can do is to amplify your energy. What has really worked for me is staying in my authenticity and putting out there what is true for me. I encourage people to not think of marketing as ‘how can I get clients’ but think of marketing as ‘how can I amplify the message of what I’m offering.”

Thank you, Ivy!

Connect with Ivy: 

Luminae Wellness


Ivy’s Facial Gua Sha as a cultural practice workshop

Hi! I'm Katie Altneu

I'm an acupuncturist, herbalist, & business teacher

My acupuncture clinic in Denver, CO makes me so happy. It's full enough to support my life, and simple enough to give me peace of mind. I'm a firm believer that bigger is not always better and that we need to "stop the glorification of busy".

I want your acupuncture clinic to be as full as you'd like it to be. I want you to know how to inspire-to-action the people who need you and our medicine. And I believe the best strategies are simple and heartfelt.

Combining my prior education & career in business & finance with my personal experience starting and growing my clinic, I love teaching acupuncturists to master the business side of their clinics. I believe in you and I'm so glad you're here!

Katie Altneu, creator of AcuProsper & the ProsperRing

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