A new year is a fresh start, and another chance to take steps toward a healthier, happier version of ourselves. For those seeking to achieve New Year's resolutions and accomplish certain health goals with long-lasting results, acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine may help you stay on track and achieve these goals by balancing your body's energy flow to reduce stress and depression, relieve pain, and maintain a healthy weight.
Stress, anxiety, and depression all inhibit the flow of Qi (energy) throughout the body. This energy normally flows through our body along the meridian pathways. When stress, anxiety, or depression reach high levels, the pathways become blocked, preventing Qi from flowing freely. Acupuncture helps break up these blockages.
During an acupuncture treatment, the parasympathetic nervous system is signaled to repair and restore, and the release of endorphins during treatment can act as an antidepressant by increasing serotonin levels in the brain. Additionally, acupuncture helps increase blood circulation, which brings more oxygen to cells throughout the body to filter out cortisol. Less cortisol allows the body to retreat from a constant state of “fight or flight” and curbs the release of adrenaline.
The benefit of regular acupuncture treatments is cumulative and it has been proven to reduce blood pressure, decrease heart rate, and relax the muscles. If regular treatments aren’t a viable option, acupressure and auriculotherapy are alternatives that have also shown to be effective.
If you have long-standing chronic pain that affects your day-to-day life and are looking for a non-pharmacological option for relief, acupuncture is a safe and excellent choice. Unlike medications, acupuncture won’t cause adverse reactions or unpleasant side effects.
Acupuncture has been proven effective in treating chronic pain including neck and back pain, osteoarthritis, knee and joint pain, and headaches including migraines and tension headaches by a number of studies conducted by the National Institute of Health (NIH). Because all bodies respond differently to treatment, there is no universal number for how many treatments it will require to start feeling relief from your pain. Staying committed to the treatment may allow you to make progress towards your resolutions by putting you back on track to the quality of life and activities you once enjoyed.
MAINTAINING HEALTHY GOALS
Maintaining a healthy weight or setting weight loss goals is one of the most common resolutions, but achieving this can be difficult for many people. Acupuncture can help you maintain your health goals in many ways, including keeping your blood sugar levels balanced and preventing auto-immune diseases that can cause weight gain. It also helps correct imbalances in your body that contribute to weight gain.
Acupuncture works by stimulating key points on the body called meridians to improve circulation and balance hormones while strengthening immunity so you feel better overall. The treatment helps regulate blood sugar levels through improved insulin production while reducing cravings for sweets or other foods that might cause increases in blood sugar levels after eating them (which then results in an increase of fat cells).
With regular treatments with an acupuncturist who specializes in Chinese medicine, safe and effective weight loss is a goal that may be in reach.