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The Connection Between Acupuncture and Weight Loss

Updated on January 8, 2018

In order to lose weight and keep it off you need a proper diet, a solid exercise plan and a way to relieve stress. When you’re on a diet it’s not just your body that is under strain but also your mind. In fact, most people that quit do so because they are overeager at start and then lose interest on the way. They give in to the temptation to eat or pass on exercising because they feel like they are constantly under pressure to perform well. Acupuncture, much like massage or other therapies, has been proven to relieve stress and help with concentration problems.

How Acupuncture and Weight Loss Work Together

Acupuncture has had very real results in patients dealing with stress related problems. Doctors are unsure about the exact mechanics but acupuncture works by having small sharp needless inserted in various key points around your body. Some key points include the soles of your feet and behind the ears.

The result of an acupuncture session is the release of extra endorphins from the patient. These endorphins have a lot of positive effects on the body. They control hormonal imbalances that cause stress, anxiety and panic attacks. A person that has had a severe diet change is subject to anxiety attacks because the person feels like they are being deprived of their regular activities.

These anxiety and panic attacks lead to refrigerator raids and overeating. If you’ve ever binged on ice cream or other fattening foods because you were in a bad mood you’ll know exactly what I’m talking about. The way acupuncture and weight loss work together is that they reduce your stress levels and subsequently the need to eat more.

Some other benefits that have linked acupuncture and weight loss are an improved digestion, faster metabolism and regulating hormone secretions. Acupuncture has also been linked with strengthening the functions of the liver, an organ responsible for producing chemicals that improve digestion, processing nutrients and breaking down fats.

The Acupuncture Process

There are several channels that acupuncturists believe to control and stimulate the functions in our body. Each of these channels has a specific pressure point which can influence the behavior of the functions associated with that channel.

The channels that an acupuncturist will target when dealing with weight loss patients are located on the ear and are called the hunger point, the Shen Men point, the stomach point and the endocrine point. They insert tiny needles in these points which then work to stimulate certain channels or meridians and have the body release neurochemicals and hormones.

Usually the process only last an hour or two but some acupuncturists suggest taping up the inserted needles and leaving them in place for multiple days. They believe that a longer duration helps patients overcome the urge to eat especially when they are in beginning stages of a diet and exercise.

Is It Worth Using?

The answer to this question is different for everyone. If you feel like you have an iron will and have a past on setting and accomplishing goals without faltering then perhaps acupuncture won’t have as many perks for you. You will still benefit from the stress relieving and hormone stimulation part of it but you would probably still go through your weight loss program without it.

Acupuncture may be a perfect choice for people who have been known to have problems with holding on to a diet. If you’ve quit a diet over and over again because you kept overthinking things and couldn’t help manage your cravings then definitely give acupuncture a try. Acupuncture and weight loss are especially connected when stress is a big factor in maintaining the diet.

Other Things You Should Know

Acupuncture treatments are recommended to be repeated throughout the entire dieting period. A specialist can inform you how often you have to come in for a session in order to maintain the desired effects. Alternatively you can do one session a few days after you began the diet and then visit the acupuncturist only if you feel like you need a bit of relief.

As you can see, acupuncture alone will not make you lose weight. If it did then no one would be on a diet or exercising. Don’t look for miracle results when you are trying to shed off extra pounds. As with everything worthwhile, losing weight takes time and effort. You are guaranteed to see results in the long term and you can use acupuncture for relief when things seem grim.

Acupuncture is a certified practice therapy and it should only be done by a qualified practitioner. Most states require that acupuncturists are licensed in order to prove that they’ve completed the necessary training and education. Some practitioners offer a special Acupuncture and Weight Loss program that is made of 10 sessions delivered during the course of a few weeks.


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