Learn About Acupuncture

How is acupuncture different from Western medicine?

We can best answer this question by explaining the basic framework of both forms of medicine. The main form of medicine in the United States is known as Western medicine. Western medicine relies on the belief that disease is a defect within the human body or a destructive process caused by a specific outside pathogen. In the US, medical doctors use reductionism to employ diagnostic tools, find the disease-causing invader, control symptoms and cure the disease. There are three main components of treatment available within Western medicine: pharmaceuticals, surgery and therapy (i.e. physical therapy, psychiatric therapy, orthotics, speech therapy).

Acupuncture is the main part of another form of medicine called Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). TCM looks at multiple symptoms and their pattern of illness specific to the individual and delineates their cause from a combination of negative imbalances within the lifestyle, psyche, and effects of environmental stress, trauma or invasion by external pathogens. TCM utilizes a holistic approach to medicine and does not try to find one exact reason for illness; rather, it acknowledges that there are several factors that contribute to problems arising in the physical body. There are five main components of treatment available within TCM: acupuncture, Chinese herbal medicine, tui na (similar to massage), Tai Ji/Qi Gong (movement and stretching exercises) and nutrition.

Western medicine evolved in Europe and relies on clinical research to show an exact link between cause of disease and its clinical manifestations. This leads to specific diagnostic tests and then treatments to understand and affect the human body, with vocabulary focusing on genetics and biochemistry. Traditional Chinese medicine evolved in China and relies on human trials that have taken place over thousands of years to validate effectiveness. Because results were based on human experience and not laboratory data, a different vocabulary developed to explain how energy (qi) and blood travel through the body in certain pathways (meridians) and can get obstructed by trauma, emotions, environmental factors and lifestyle choices. It is also worth noting that because TCM is a science that has been perfected through its use on humans, the number of practitioner caused deaths or even negative side-effects is virtually non-existent.

One type of medicine is not superior to the other. They comprise the two main forms of medicine practiced in the world today. Because Western medicine is the primary form of medicine in this country, TCM is considered an alternative form of medicine and is used as a complementary approach to that of Western medicine. We hope this website serves to illustrate that TCM, when applied through acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine, can be used as a successful choice for restoring and maintaining optimal health.

Acupuncture is best known for its ability to successfully treat pain. Pain itself is not a diagnosis, but rather an indication or warning that there is a problem somewhere in the body. Many times the exact location of pain points to where the problem is, as in the case of elbow pain above an inflamed tendon. But in other situations the site of pain may be related to problems far away, as in leg pain resulting from a herniated disk pushing on a nerve in the back.

The intensity of the pain usually indicates or warns how severe the problem is. Each person has a different pain threshold, but pain levels that increase or do not lessen over time point to something that needs attention. And the circumstances surrounding the onset of the pain are just as important. Was there an accident or incident? Or did the pain gradually develop over a course of time or during a certain period of life?

The characteristics of pain give important information about what is causing the body to send this signal. Once noticed, it is important to address the underlying problem that forced the body to send a pain message, not just turn down the discomfort. Otherwise the body will send out other warning signals until the core problem is corrected.

How does acupuncture stop pain?

There are many therapies that attempt to stop pain. Most of them mask the pain while hoping the body is able to heal itself or push the body to heal faster while offering limited pain relief. Acupuncture is an extremely powerful and effective approach to treat pain because it decreases pain levels as it stimulates the body’s healing response.

Acupuncture resolves pain by affecting several pain pathways and healing responses at the same time:

  • Raise endorphin levels and diminish the nervous system’s pain response
  • Decrease inflammation and swelling
  • Relax muscles and stop spasms
  • Increase circulation to the local area

How many treatments will I need?

This varies considerably based on the specific condition being treated. Each person receives an individualized treatment plan based on age, past medical history, lifestyle, treatment goals and current pain status. Generally speaking, however, acute pain (less than three months duration) is often resolved in a short series of treatments spaced close together and chronic pain requires consistent regular treatment to achieve long-term pain relief.

How else will acupuncture help me deal with my pain?

Almost every person finds acupuncture treatments to be very relaxing. Many do not expect this effect, especially dealing with painful conditions, but acupuncture balances various parts of the body together. This results in a person feeling calm, peaceful and very relaxed. Pain is stressful and can wear someone down causing irritability, tension and insomnia. By relaxing the whole person, acupuncture also helps eliminate these other negative aspects of pain. And it does so in a natural way, with no negative side effects.

Acupuncture also looks at the entire person, not just the one part that hurts. This means an acupuncturist will offer suggestions for individual lifestyle improvements regarding exercise, supplements and diet, sleeping and stress management techniques to help a person improve health and decrease pain.

The essence of the fertility wellness program is to take a closer look at the body from a holistic perspective and correct any and all imbalances that may be contributing to fertility problems. It is my belief that all women and men should strive for optimal health when planning to begin a family. The reproductive system works much like a concert symphony – a masterpiece is created only if all the players are giving their best. Women may have clues that their periods are not healthy; they may have lots of PMS symptoms or pain, heavy bleeding or irregular cycles.

The first goal of the fertility wellness program is to educate women on the details of their menstrual cycles – to help them interpret BBT charts, identify cervical fluid, understand how the hormones interplay and work to create an optimal fertile environment. Then we use the tools within the fertility wellness program to attain better balance. These are:

  • Acupuncture
  • Relaxation and stress reduction
  • Diet therapy
  • Abdominal massage
  • Lifestyle modifications to promote better health in general
  • Chinese herbal medicines
  • Relaxation and stress reduction
  • Complimentary care for Assisted Reproductive Therapy procedures

Why use acupuncture for infertility?

Acupuncture offers a natural approach to treating infertility by focusing on enhancing the quality of eggs, sperm, endometrial lining and cervical fluid. Sometimes this is enough for couples to conceive on their own and it is a very important step for couples who are about to undergo the expense and physical demands of IVF. Acupuncture can also support patients during In Vitro Fertilization, Artificial Insemination, and Hormonal Therapy cycles. Multiple studies have shown and most doctors agree that acupuncture increases the success rate of these intense procedures and also helps to alleviate the uncomfortable side effects. Acupuncture is a low-cost, noninvasive, and non-side-effect producing compliment to the Western health care a woman seeking pregnancy needs.

Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine for Depression and Emotional Well-Being

Acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine are very effective at treating problems of emotional health. Currently in the US, many patients are using acupuncture and herbal medicine to help combat stress, ease anxiety and help restore a sense of joy in their lives. It can help resolve not only emotional discomfort, but the physical symptoms surrounding it, such as insomnia, digestive upset, fatigue and chronic pain.

Acupuncture by itself is very calming and there are many ways in which it works to help relax the nervous system. If you are currently in some kind of therapy or counseling, acupuncture is a wonderful adjunct therapy to help support the work you are already doing with your therapist. Chinese herbs can be a helpful tool to naturally balance mood swings, sleeplessness and many other symptoms. If you are taking prescription medications for your depression, anxiety or other issue, I can safely prescribe herbs for you that will not interfere or negatively interact with your medications.

Whether you are suffering from depression, anxiety, panic attacks or even stress, you can use Chinese medicine to help not only relieve symptoms but permanently resolve your condition.

Everyone experiences digestive upset at some time and many people experience it regularly. In America, it is easiest to point our finger at a combination of a high-sugar and high-fat diet, stress, and large portion sizes. If we eat this way repeatedly, more serious conditions develop other than just an over-full or indigestion feeling. Chronic heartburn and acid reflux, constipation, irritable bowel syndrome and food allergies have become very common. These digestive symptoms can make us miserable and completely deprive us of the previous enjoyment eating provided. It exemplifies the concept that you can have too much of a good thing and reinforces the Taoist proverb, “moderation is the key to longevity.”

While we are overwhelmed with over-the-counter medications to treat uncomfortable digestive symptoms, there are often more serious underlying mechanisms causing the continued distress. A stomach can consistently produce too much acid, the motility of the digestive tract can become chronically hyper or lazy and pain from unidentifiable sources can be difficult to alleviate.* Certain acupuncture points have been shown to alter acid secretion, stimulate GI muscle contraction, cause GI muscle relaxation and inhibit gastric acid secretion via the somatosympathetic pathway, making acupuncture beneficial in treating GERD, functional dyspepsia, IBS and general GI symptoms. In clinical practice, digestive disorders respond very well to acupuncture and when combined with diet and lifestyle modifications most people can experience permanent, medication-free relief of their symptoms. Chinese herbal medicine is sometimes used for a short period of time to alleviate certain conditions.

*Takahashi T. Journal of Gastroenterology. 2006 May;41(5):408-17. Acupuncture for functional gastrointestinal disorders.

Unfortunately, menopause has gained popularity in the media as a dreaded sign of advancing age where women’s days are filled with barely tolerable symptoms ranging from mood swings to hot flashes. The discomfort can cause many women to forget that we are a magnificent and adaptive species, constantly changing in relation to our body’s age, environment and evolutionary purpose. The years of menopause and before, age 40-55 for many, are the years when women are making their mark in multiple aspects of their lives. Self confidence is higher, many see advanced achievements professionally and women generally feel more creative and hungry for a productive life. The physical side effects of menopause absolutely should not get in the way of this powerful shift forward in living a meaningful life.

Most of us are familiar with the pros and cons of Hormone Replacement Therapy. While they can supplement hormones and alleviate some symptoms, HRT may also increase the risk of estrogen type cancers such as breast and ovarian. Natural and safe alternatives to HRT have been more popular recently and Traditional Chinese Medicine has much to contribute. Acupuncture and herbal formulas along with dietary and lifestyle modifications have been documented to alleviate the symptoms of menopause for thousands of years.

How does Chinese medicine help the symptoms of menopause?

The biggest difference between the Western and Eastern approaches to menopause is that in Chinese medicine we do not have one governing diagnosis of ‘menopause.’ It does not exist as a disease category. Instead we view it as a hormonal shift and treat the woman according to her symptoms separately. This allows the acupuncturist to treat a woman very specifically for her particular pattern of symptoms. If five women complain of insomnia and hot flashes, it is possible that there may be five different treatments given because each symptom is considered in the context of the woman’s overall health and also because insomnia and hot flashes are names, not descriptions of what they’re experiencing. Insomnia for one person may mean that she just cannot fall asleep but to someone else it may mean that she falls asleep easily but wakes frequently and tosses and turns all night. Likewise, the term hot flashes to one person may mean a surge of heat but to another it may be a surge of heat to the palms and soles of the feet accompanied with sweating. These subtle nuances are extremely important in the diagnosis and subsequent treatment strategies we employ with acupuncture and herbs.

Once you have discussed in detail your symptoms, I will create a treatment plan for you. Usually both acupuncture and herbal medicine will be used but in what frequency and length will be determined by your response to the treatment. Some women respond quickly to just a month of treatment and some need to continue coming for several months. My goal is to give you great care in the most efficient manner possible so that you may resume your normal activities inspired by how good you feel.

Is there evidence of Chinese medicine alleviating menopause symptoms?

Substantial research indicates that acupuncture is successful at relieving many symptoms such as hot flashes, mood swings and insomnia. The World Health Organization has approved acupuncture as a safe treatment for menopause and is helping to fund clinical trials of larger sample sizes currently. Dr. Susan Cohen, D.S.N., APRN, associate professor of the University of Pittsburgh, found that during the course of acupuncture treatments, hot flashes decreased by 35% and insomnia decreased by 50% in menopausal women. This and other studies can be reviewed at www.pubmed.com type in the keywords acupuncture, menopause.

Menstruation may be considered a burden by most women at some point in their lives. In Chinese medicine, we view periods as a monthly report card. The timing of ovulation, the symptoms of pain, emotional fluctuations, breast tenderness, the color and consistency of the blood, the heaviness of the bleeding – all of these different characteristics of the period reveal information about hormonal balance (or imbalance) and even the presence of concerns such as endometriosis or polycystic ovary syndrome.

Often, women receive a prescription for the birth control pill in order to regulate virtually any menstrual concerns. The pill does a good job of overriding your own hormonal interplay and supplementing your body so that it does not experience the symptoms of hormonal imbalance anymore. While this is a good choice for some instances, in women who are sure they would some day like to conceive a child it is to their advantage to rectify the hormonal imbalance without oral contraception. There is no time to lose as long term hormonal imbalance can set the stage for estrogen dominant issues such as fibroids, endometriosis and even certain types of cancers.

Acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine provide a natural, safe and effective way to resolve most menstrual irregularities.

Some of the most important decisions parents make regarding their children have to do with healthcare. I am trained to work with your medical doctor to provide your child with the best of both worlds of medicine. I would like you to be an active participant in your child’s healthcare. The methods of treatment used in my clinic support your child’s innate ability to heal and include: acupuncture, massage, nutrition, and Chinese herbs. My goal is to create healthy children who will grow into healthy and knowledgeable adults.

Pediatrics is one of the oldest specialties in Chinese medicine. Children are not seen as miniature adults, and their treatments are specific to these differences. Chinese medicine sees the child’s body as immature and susceptible to certain diseases.

Children’s digestive function is considered immature until the age of six. Digestion plays a major role in the health and well being of infants and young children, therefore diet is extremely important in preventing and treating childhood disease. Children are generally more susceptible to getting sick, but they are also quicker to recover. Children respond very quickly to medicine of any kind.

When you bring your infant or child in for an appointment I will take a thorough medical history. Some questions will be the same as a Western M.D. will ask, while others are specific to Chinese medicine. I may also look at your child’s eyes, tongue, skin color, and vein at the base of the index finger. This information will guide the treatment plan.

Acupuncture: Infants typically do not receive acupuncture. Children under the age of eight can receive acupuncture. The needles are inserted and removed quickly so the child does not have to rest or hold still to retain needles. Pre-pubescent children can retain needles for up to 20 minutes. Adolescents receive acupuncture as adults.

Massage: Massage techniques including acupressure may be performed during the treatment. Pediatric massage is used to enhance the treatment, and parents will be instructed on how to continue the treatments at home.

Nutrition: I will work with you to eliminate foods and habits that contribute to illness. You will be given suggestions on how to improve the digestive capacity and promote health.

Chinese herbs: Special pediatric herbal formulas are used which combine the purest Chinese herbs into an easy to used liquid extract. Most are pleasant tasting, and can be added to a little bit of water, juice, or food. Herbs are given for acute and chronic conditions.

Pregnancy is a very special time for women that can also present some unwelcome physical and emotional challenges. It is often very overwhelming to experience the many changes in your body and confusing as to how to best take care of yourself nutritionally and medically. Many of the options such as over-the-counter medicines, some forms of exercise, and many prescription drugs are no longer available and women turn to alternatives for natural help for many common pregnancy discomforts. Thankfully, acupuncture and sometimes even carefully prescribed herbs can make a world of difference in making your pregnancy the joyful and exciting experience you dreamed it would be.

Science has very carefully evaluated the safety of acupuncture during pregnancy and found it to have no negative side effects to the mother or the baby. With this assurance, many institutions are currently completing studies in the many different applications of acupuncture during pregnancy. Many studies have been conducted on the benefits of using acupuncture to induce labor. Women should feel very confident in utilizing a form of medicine that has been helping women during pregnancy for more than 3,000 years.

Our immune system is responsible for keeping bacteria, viruses, microbes and toxins from interrupting the normal functions of the body. It is a complex system that involves specialized cells (such as T-cells, B cells, macrophages and others) that recognize and destroy foreign entities. Poor nutrition, stress, lack of sleep and repeated exposure to harmful agents all lead to a declining immune system that is no longer able to respond effectively when the need arises. And once it is compromised, a weak immune system results in frequent colds, allergies, the inability to fight off infections and general feelings of malaise.

Acupuncture and Chinese herbal therapy are effective tools to strengthen a weakened immune system. The National Institute of Health and many published studies concur that acupuncture has far-reaching effects on immune system health from increasing red and white cell counts in compromised patients to increasing lymphocyte proliferation and natural killer cell activity in patients fighting illness. This activity is accomplished through the needling of specific acupuncture points and their subsequent effect on the nervous system. Other effects of acupuncture relax the body, help a person sleep and promote healthy digestion all of which support a healthy immune system.

Many Chinese herbs are recognized for enhancing the immune system and are combined synergistically to prevent and treat infections. A study published in Journal of Clinical & Laboratory Immunology found that astragalus (huang qi) increases both specific and non-specific immunity. Ganoderma (ling zhi) can increase the number of white blood cells and also inhibit the growth of various viruses and bacteria as presented in Cellular Immunology. According to the Chinese Medical Journal, Cordyceps (dong chong xia cao) has a strong effect on overall immunity by increasing lymphocytes and natural killer cells. Other herbs act to dry excessive mucus, relieve sore throat and sinus pressure, clear lung congestion and open airways.

Each person presents with different needs and deficiencies. Acupuncture points and Chinese herbs are tailored to the individual case to produce best results, but both offer a natural and effective way to strengthen the immune system. As Western science continues to study Traditional Chinese Medicine, we become more familiar with how it is able to influence our immunity in beneficial ways.

In hospitals in China, doctors of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) treat even the most difficult skin conditions every day. In the West, many patients are now beginning to seek out Chinese medicine for skin conditions particularly because they have not had satisfying results from other treatments. Throughout history, Chinese medicine has emphasized the individuality of the condition, stressing that it is the root of the problem that must be addressed in order to resolve it. This method of treatment proves to be more satisfactory and have longer lasting results than treating only the manifestation of the problem.

Acupuncture and Chinese medicine are particularly effective at treating some of the most common skin conditions in the West: acne, eczema and psoriasis. Hundreds of case studies over thousands of years have documented its effectiveness at resolving chronic and unremitting skin problems such as these. In particular, Chinese herbal medicine serves as a safe and valuable tool for combating these and other skin conditions on a daily basis, from the inside-out.

Acupuncture can also be used to reduce the appearance of scars, whether from these conditions or from surgery, injury or other trauma. Acupuncture and Chinese herbs can also be used to treat acute problems, such as hives, dermatitis and even infectious skin conditions.

Whether your skin condition is mild or severe, recent or long-standing, Chinese medicine can play a significant role in the complete resolution of the problem.

Sports Injury encompasses a large area of medical concerns, usually related to musculoskeletal conditions. Basically, it covers all acute injuries and chronic ailments due to specific physical activities. It includes problems that result from physical training, martial arts, competitive sports, “weekend warriors,” outdoor activities and competitions. People who participate in these activities commonly stress or damage muscles, ligaments, tendons and joints – the areas that are used the most. Sports Injury medicine has evolved into a specific medical category that focuses on treating these injuries.

Specific Conditions

Common medical diagnoses that fall under the umbrella of Sports Injuries include:

  • Medial & lateral epicondylitis
  • Frozen shoulder
  • Plantar fascitis
  • Acute olecranon bursitis
  • Acromioclavicular joint separation
  • Rotator cuff tendonitis
  • Osteoarthritis of all joints
  • Meniscal tears
  • Bicepital tenosynovitis
  • Lumbar disc herniations
  • Anterior & posterior cruciate ligament tears
  • Patellofemoral syndrome
  • Osgood-Schlatter syndrome, and more…

The following common conditions fall under the above:

  • Tennis elbow
  • Pitcher’s shoulder
  • Golfer’s elbow
  • Low back strain
  • Trick knee
  • Ankle sprain
  • Tendonitis
  • Shin splints
  • Trigger finger

Acupuncture & Sports Injury

Acupuncture has a very successful record with sports injuries. Many professional sports teams have acupuncturists on staff to decrease healing times and resolve stubborn ailments. The use of acupuncture to treat acute injuries from intense or repetitive physical activity began centuries ago. It was and still is one of the primary means of quick healing for the martial arts. Specific acupuncture styles and techniques were developed to stop pain and dramatically increase recovery time. This tradition continues today and its use has expanded into competitive athletics that result in similar injuries.

How does acupuncture help?

Acupuncture is an effective treatment for sports injuries because it reduces pain, increases range of motion, increases recovery and healing time, and strengthens weakened parts of the body. These effects are accomplished during treatment because acupuncture:

  • Decreases inflammation
  • Reduces swelling
  • Relaxes muscles and relieves spasms
  • Decreases bruising
  • Lowers the body’s pain response
  • Improves local blood circulation to increase delivery of nutrients and removal of noxious elements

When to get Acupuncture

Acupuncture divides sports injuries into two main categories, which determine how treatment typically proceeds. Acute injuries (that happened recently) and chronic injuries (unresolved for three or more months).

Acute Injuries

Acute injuries need to be properly assessed before any type of treatment can begin. Most people are all too familiar with the feeling of a strain or sprain. If someone is unsure, however, it is best to get examined and properly diagnosed (possibly with the help of an X-ray or MRI) to rule out a more serious injury. Acupuncture should then begin as soon after an injury as possible for the best results.
Acupuncturists classify acute injuries as Excess conditions. An Excess condition is just what it sounds like: there is an excess physical response (too much pain) or an excess biochemical reaction (too much inflammation or swelling). Acupuncture treatment given soon after an injury occurs encourages the body to deal with and process this excess in a rapid fashion. An improvement is usually noticed within one or two treatments. If an injury is not very severe, 3-4 treatments typically resolves the condition. More serious injuries require four treatments before an accurate prognosis and treatment plan can be given.

Right after an acute sports injury happens it is helpful to remember the acronym RICE. Each letter stands for one of the four steps to follow immediately after an injury: Rest, Ice, Compression and Elevation. This will help quicken recovery and provide short term relief.

Chronic Injuries

Chronic injuries also need to be properly assessed before any type of treatment begins. It is important to determine if there is an underlying structural cause for a lingering injury such as a loss of cartilage, formation of scar tissue or degenerative damage of any kind. Once the complete underlying framework of the injury is understood, an acupuncture treatment plan can be devised to address both the main symptoms and their causes. This may include acupuncture treatments, Chinese herbal formulas, stretches and exercises, diet modifications and the use of liniments or balms.

Acupuncturists classify chronic sports injuries as Deficient conditions. Deficiency refers to a weakness or lack. Over time, unresolved sports injuries lead to areas losing strength, flexibility and stability. Instead of focusing on removing excesses, acupuncture for chronic conditions focuses on invigorating and strengthening specific parts of the body. This is done while also decreasing the pain that commonly accompanies most chronic sports injuries.

It is more difficult to generalize the length of treatment for chronic conditions because medications, prolonged inactivity, low morale & surgeries complicate treatment. Even so, a person should notice a positive change in his/her specific condition within 8-10 treatments, although many chronic injuries respond quickly to acupuncture. After which, an accurate prognosis for complete resolution of the problem can be given.

We experience many different symptoms that may not pertain to a certain disease category or by themselves indicate a pathological issue. Insomnia, stress and emotional eating are examples. These subtle manifestations can be a signal that something more serious may be brewing and it is wise to seek preventative care.

Acupuncture has much to offer conditions that are possibly not severe enough to be addressed by Western medicine. In fact, Chinese medicine excels at disease prevention. Keeping your body systems healthy so that you can get good sleep, maintain a healthy weight and live a happy, addiction-free life will go a long way to preventing many common health concerns.

The National Institute of Health supports this idea and has established acupuncture as effective in treating over 26 disease categories. Chinese medicine has been shown to successfully treat conditions ranging from back pain to PMS, high blood pressure to psoriasis, bronchitis to arthritis, diabetes to asthma, depression to insomnia and the list goes on. You might be surprised that the health issue you are dealing with can be effectively treated through acupuncture.

Weight Loss

Acupuncture for Weight Loss
Beginning a Weight Loss Program

There is no miracle cure for weight loss. Everything you hear about commitment to nutrition, exercise and lifestyle changes is true; without them, any quick and easy weight loss “solution” is temporary at best. But a committed person, one who is inspired to lose weight not only for their appearance but also for their health, can use acupuncture and Chinese medicine to help them begin, achieve and maintain their weight loss goals. If you are ready to begin losing weight or have been trying to lose weight and are having difficulty, acupuncture can be a valuable adjunct therapy to your weight loss program.

In a recent study, acupuncture helped promote weight loss. Twenty women between the ages of 22 and 42, all with BMI (Body Mass Index) higher than 27, were divided into two groups. The group of women who followed a regimen of a 2,000 calorie per day diet, daily exercise and weekly ear acupuncture treatments lost on average more than twice as much weight as those who only dieted and exercised, even if they did not comply exactly with the treatment plan.

How does acupuncture help?

It is important to address both the physiological and psychological aspects of weight loss. Since acupuncture and Chinese herbs treat the physical, mental and emotional components to any illness, there are several ways that they can benefit you while you are trying to lose weight.

Regulates metabolism: Acupuncture helps to regulate metabolism. A history of irregular eating, overeating and even thyroid dysfunction all contribute to a slow metabolism. Acupuncture can help to increase metabolism by stimulating the thyroid and endocrine glands as your body adjusts to the changes in your diet and exercise. Affecting the endocrine system also helps to stabilize blood sugar levels.

Stops food cravings: Regular acupuncture treatments can help curb food cravings, just as it has been proven to help cravings for other addictive substances like tobacco and alcohol. Support from acupuncture helps to eliminate cravings and increases the will power to overcome them.

Benefits digestion: Over time, things like crash diets, irregular eating habits and excessive greasy or fattening foods all take their toll on the digestion. Chronic symptoms such as bloating, gas, heartburn, constipation or diarrhea are all signs that the digestive system is out of balance. Acupuncture can help to harmonize the digestive organs so that you are symptom-free. Proper digestion ensures that you are getting the nutrients you need from your food so you feel less hungry.

Calming and relaxing: When acupuncture needles are inserted into specific points on the body and in the ear it stimulates the release of endorphins. Endorphins have a calming and relaxing effect on the body. Naturally releasing endorphins make it easier to deal with stress, frustration and anxiety which can be triggers for emotional eating, overeating and bingeing on fattening foods.

Cleansing: Acupuncture treatments during weight loss help to cleanse your system. Toxins that have been built up over time from excess weight and adipose tissue can cause symptoms such as fatigue, acne and depression. These can be relieved or eliminated with acupuncture, whether or not you are trying to lose weight.