Treating Obesity with Acupuncture

Roughly thirty-one percent of Americans, that’s about sixty-five million, are considered to be obese. In terms of the scientific/health standards obesity is defined as having a Body Mass Index (BMI) of thirty percent higher. To calculate your BMI take your weight in pounds, multiply it by 703, then divide it twice by your height in inches. A healthy or average BMI falls in the range of 20-24%, anything below that is considered underweight, and anything about is regarded as overweight. With the exception of professional athletes, weightlifters, and those who generally are heavier due to a surplus of body fat stored in the body. It is well known that Diet/Nutrition and Exercise lifestyle changes are the most efficient means for treating obesity. However, many overweight people are finding regular needling by a licensed Acupuncturist to be beneficial when implemented along with regular exercise and nutritional awareness.

Losing weight is easier said than done. Being obese is as much a struggle physically and socially as it is emotionally and mentally. Most overweight people at one time or another have given in to fad diets, gadgets, or get thin quick exercise schemes promoted by the media only to be disappointed and eventually relapse. In the rate instances these programs do bear results they usually are short-lived.

Acupuncture’s Mechanism and Benefits for Weight Loss

When it comes to understanding inner alchemy, Traditional Chinese Medicine and Acupuncture offer insight and practices that just aren’t found in workout tapes and diet pills. Obesity has no singular cause. Genetics, age, lifestyle, constitution, emotion, and diet are all factors that contribute to the likelihood of obesity. The foods we crave depend on the imbalances in our internal system. At times, those very foods are the ones our bodies can not digest which can create a vicious cycle. This can be due to an enzyme deficiency. In the case of low blood sugar, which many obese people experience, their bodies can not digest the complex carbohydrates such as those found in fruits so they reach for simple sugars like those in candies and sweets. Ingesting these sugars raises insulin levels, which can lead to Diabetes. Their blood sugar quickly drops back down leaving them feeling the need to eat again. In short, eating unnatural goods throws the entire system out of balance. Acupuncture can help normalize the system, and aid weight loss when accompanied by proper diet and exercise.

Clinical Studies Supporting Acupuncture for Obesity

In a Russian study of obese children it was found that regular Acupuncture treatments resulted in the normalization of blood and serum levels, decrease of overall body mass and fatty tissue content, and increased exercise performance abilities. In other studies conclusive evidence was offered to show needling of auricular points helped to lower the appetite, increase satiety with less food, as well as lower insulin and lipid levels. A balance system also provides more circulation of blood and nutrients to the muscles, bones, and tissues so that an individual can exercise longer thus burning more stored fat without becoming tired or light headed which can be discouraged factors when beginning an exercise program.

Acupuncture in itself will not melt fat away but it certainly does address the health issues that accompany obesity and lead to becoming overweight. Stimulation of the endocrine system can regulate not only the metabolism but many other functions of the body. Acupuncture not only focuses on an individual’s problem areas such as kidney or spleen function but it also balances the whole person. It gives them an opportunity to experience health and how they can feel better despite their external appearances. This is very profound and powerful as it generates a real experience of feeling at home in their bodies and gives them the motivation to take an active role in their own well-being.

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