The ancient Chinese art of acupuncture can help patients to manage effective weight-loss, especially when weight has been gained by overeating. This kind of weight-gain can be directly attributed to the emotional state of the patient, who may use food as a form of comfort, rather than through the need to relieve hunger. The acupuncture needles are used to stimulate the release of endorphins, from the pituitary glands. These are the feel-good hormones that are normally released after a strenuous workout.
Before the practitioner decides where to insert the needles, they will examine the patient’s tongue, to look for any signs that indicate health issues that might have contributed to the weight-problems. The acupuncturist will also determine the pulse-rate to detect the person’s energy levels, and general health of the stomach.This, together with a history of the patient’s eating patterns, is to help the practitioner decide where to insert the needles for that particular patient.
The needles will be inserted in the ear, and in two or three other body points, depending on the diagnosis. These may include the mouth, thyroid, lungs, stomach, kidney, spleen, or in one or other of the main endocrinal glands. In the initial treatment, the “four gates” points will be used to enable any blocked energy to flow through the body. The “four gates” are located in the hands and feet; in the webbing between the index finger and the thumb, and similarly between the big toe and its neighbor.
Acupuncture needles are inserted at a point in muscle tissue near nerve endings, to best stimulate the production of endorphins, the natural pain and fever relievers. A prime point for weight-loss is behind the ears, as it stimulates the release of endorphins in large doses. If the patient feels emotionally well, they are better able to resist the temptation to use food for comfort eating.
At the end of the treatment, the acupuncturist will insert ear tacks, or staples, so that patients can stimulate the point themselves. These are usually worn for up to three days. When the patient feels the urge to eat, they can press the point, or rub it for about 20 seconds, to stimulate the pituitary gland again. This helps the patent to relax, and regain their determination not to overeat.
While acupuncture may not be a cure-all, many people have lost weight successfully by using this method. Although it may not work for the severely obese, the best part is that there are no harmful side effects from acupuncture, and it is not addictive. Treatment is usually twice a week for the initial treatment, for those wishing to lose 5 to 10 lbs, and then every two weeks. This, together with attention to diet and exercise, is usually enough to set anyone on the road to better health, and a more stable body weight.

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Submited By: Elizabeth Coughlan


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