Hi, I’m Kim Christensen, M.Om., Dipl.OM, L.Ac. I’m a licensed acupuncturist, herbalist, and owner of Constellation Acupuncture & Healing Arts. Additionally, I am honored to be the first Integrative Health Fellow at University of Minnesota Masonic Children’s Hospital. In this 6-month fellowship from July 2016-January 2017, I am providing acupoint therapy and other integrative health modalities to pediatric patients, their families, and hospital staff. Fellowship is in partnership with University of Minnesota Medical School and Northwestern Health Sciences University.
Why I Do This Work
I have chosen this path because I have experienced first-hand the intrinsic healing potential of body, mind, and spirit when given the proper support.
After a lifetime of weird, disruptive health issues, my symptoms progressed into a significant and serious health crisis in my mid-twenties. After desperately grasping at straws for answers, I finally found the right providers that affirmed my experience and sifted through the symptomatic chaos to find the root causes. My diverse team of healthcare practitioners empowered me to make educated choices about the food I was eating, my lifestyle choices, and encouraged me to listen to and care for my whole self. For several years, I dedicated myself to a truly integrative program of dietary therapy, acupuncture, herbal medicine, probiotics and supplements, detoxification protocols, chiropractic, massage, energy work, and a slew of pharmaceutical medications. It was painstaking and patience testing, but progress came bit by bit. As they say, the only way out is through.
Fast forward through many years of learning in life and in the classroom, and here I am today, feeling better than ever and grateful for every moment. The health I have been able to reclaim – and maintain – is due to the power of the self-care practices I choose everyday.
I know what it’s like to want a fresh start and a new reality. My personal healing experiences and my academic and clinical training have cemented my belief in the power of integrative medicine to support the whole self — body, mind, and spirit — to achieve deep healing and long-lasting wellness. By working together, I can help you find a place to start. I can teach you tools to make small changes that lead to big changes down the road, so you can reclaim your health and live the life you want to lead.
Academic & Clinical Training
- Masters of Oriental Medicine, Northwestern Health Sciences University, graduated December 2015
- over 3,060 hours of training (including 785.5 hours of supervised clinical experience) in Oriental medicine foundational theory, acupuncture point location, diagnostic analysis and treatment strategy, needling techniques, needling safety, medical asepsis and risk management, tui na massage, Chinese dietary therapy, Chinese herbal medicine, ethics and professionalism, Western anatomy and physiology, pathophysiology, nutrition, and pharmacology
- Integrative Health Fellow, studying under Lynn Gershan MD, CM and Barbara Gosse LAc, University of Minnesota Masonic Children’s Hospital, July 2016-January 2017
- Provided acupoint therapy and integrative care modalities to pediatric patients in inpatient Medical-Surgical, Hematology-Oncology, NICU, PICU, and CVICU departments, as well as outpatient continuity care speciality clinic. Developed a pilot project in collaboration with the NICU to offer community-style acupoint therapy and integrative care for families of admitted NICU patients and hospital NICU staff.
- Traditional Tibetan Medicine: Ethics, Spirituality, and Healing, with Miriam Cameron PhD, MS, MA, RN, October-December 2016
- M Technique training with Kathleen Duffy, LPN, MH, November 2016
- Pediatric Hypnosis Introductory Workshop, National Pediatric Hypnosis Training Institute, October 2016
- Daishi Shoni Hari (Shonishin) training, Sensei T. Koei Kuwahara, LAc., June 2016
- Reiki Level I & II, Meta Institute, January 2016
- Mei Zen Cosmetic Acupuncture System, Dr. Martha Lucas, Ph.D., L.Ac. , March 2015
Certification & Licensure
- Diplomate of Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM)®, through the National Certification Commission of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine. This is the highest level of national certification possible in the profession.
- Clean Needle Technique (CNT) Certified, Council of Colleges of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine
- Licensed Acupuncturist in Minnesota, Minnesota Board of Medical Practice
- Red Cross Basic Life Support for Healthcare Providers certification, July 2016
Where I’ve Treated Patients
I have had incredible opportunities to work with patients in a wide variety of environments. Whether it’s a one-on-one private appointment,working in hospital rooms and clinics, or providing community-style treatments, connecting with patients fuels my fire.
- Integrative Health Fellow, University of Minnesota Masonic Children’s Hospital, July 2016-January 2017
- Private Practice, Constellation Acupuncture & Healing Arts, February 2016-present
- Community Acupuncture, Northeast Community Acupuncture & Wellness Center, March-April 2016
- Student Clinical Rotations, January 2014-December 2015
- Hospitals: University of Minnesota Masonic Children’s Hospital, University of Minnesota Medical Center Journey Clinic, University of Minnesota Medical Center East Bank
- Community Outreach Clinics: Pillsbury House Integrated Health Clinic, Aliveness Project, Salvation Army Harbor Light Natural Care Center
- Private Clinics: Edith Davis Teaching Clinic, Northwestern Health Clinic Bloomington, and DeRusha University Health Services Clinic, on the campus of Northwestern Health Sciences University
- Special Events: “Spa Day” for families and caregivers at University of Minnesota Masonic Children Hospital, acupuncture for veterans at Northwestern Health Sciences University’s “Feed ‘Em and Treat ‘Em” events at the Uptown VFW in Minneapolis, MN
What I’m Into
I love working with patients of all ages. The diverse modalities of Chinese medicine have something to offer for every stage of life, from babies to older adults. Children are incredibly responsive to acupuncture, needle-free acupoint therapy modalities, and herbal medicine, whether it is for acute illnesses or chronic health concerns. I love working with kids and teens!
Clinically, my interests are wide. I am particularly interested in chronic illness management, reproductive health, mental health, digestive disorders, pain management, Lyme Disease and tick-borne illness, and LGBTQ+ health and advocacy.
I am passionate about reproductive healthcare, safer sex practices education, and HIV prevention and education. Acupuncture, herbalism, and the many modalities of Chinese medicine provide amazing tools to help manage sexual and reproductive health, and I want to provide a welcoming, safe environment for you to discuss your questions, concerns, and practices.
Herbal medicine makes my heart sing! I am always looking for new ways to connect with powerful plant allies, whether it’s making medicines at home, reading books of herbal wisdom, attending trainings and workshops, or getting out in nature and being with the plants.
I love crystals and stones, and have felt connected to them since I was a child. I’ve been delving deep into the book Stone Medicine: A Chinese Medical Guide to Healing with Gems and Minerals by Leslie J. Franks, and look forward expanding my knowledge of using crystals and stones in my work with patients.
I am active in the Twin Cities LGBTQ+ community and am a strong advocate for health equity, access, practitioner education, and cultural competency, particularly in the area of trans* health.
A Few Fun Facts
- Astrological basics: Taurus sun, Aries moon, Gemini rising. Spring time is intense.
- My mom has been a massage therapist for over 20 years, and I grew up in a house where “alternative” medicine was the norm. I received acupuncture as a teenager for pain, acne, and digestive issues, and was immediately hooked — I even wrote research paper about acupuncture for my high school English class! I knew I wanted to pursue this medicine as a career since I was 16, and feel so grateful that I am here.
- I have worked as a professional cheesemaker. For almost four years I worked at Punk Rawk Labs, a Minneapolis company that produces dairy-free fermented nutmilk cheeses from cashews! I loved working for a company that makes a nourishing and delicious product that I believe in.
- In undergrad, I majored in Art with a shared focus on art history, fiber arts, and bookmaking, and I finding time to make and create is an important part of my self-care. Creative expression keeps my spirit bright and my vibe high.
- I’m a triathlete! I have two sprint-length triathlons under my belt from back in 2005 and 2006. Training and completing these races was a fun way to kick myself in the butt after graduating from undergrad, falling into a rut, and spending too much time drinking beer, eating snacks, and watching tv! Why just start up a gentle workout routine when I could do a triathlon? When I go, I go all out. Maybe some day I’ll go for a third!
- For several years before starting Chinese medicine school, I was a self-starter in the food scene. I wrote a gluten-free, allergy-friendly food blog called Affairs of Living, did cooking demos at the Minneapolis Farmers Market and Mill City Farmers Market, and ran a barter-based food swap called the Minneapolis Swappers.
Now that you know more about me, I’d love to know more about you.
Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or 612.787.7257 to schedule a FREE 15-minute consultation. We can discuss your questions, concerns, and goals, as well as my approach and the services I offer, to see if working together would be a good fit.