Obesity has become a prevalent problem affecting many Americans today, and is a direct cause of roughly 300,000 deaths per year. It is also the source of other serious health problems as it increases the risk of hypertension, diabetes, stroke and coronary heart disease, high cholesterol, gallstones, and sleep apnea. Strictly speaking, excess body weight is the result of the balance between calorie intake and energy expenditure, but there are many additional factors contributing to obesity, like overeating, unhealthy diet, sedentary lifestyle, genetics and family history, slow metabolism, environment, medications, psychological and behavioral factors, as well as such chronic diseases as hypothyroidism, insulin resistance, and polycystic ovary syndrome.
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 when a person is truly committed to losing weight not only for the sake of their appearance but also for their health, and are ready to make the necessary changes as far as diet and exercise they can use acupuncture and Chinese medicine as excellent supporting modalities to help them achieve and maintain their weight loss goals.
Acupuncture and Chinese herbs address physical, mental and emotional components of the condition, and facilitate weight loss by helping stimulate the thyroid and hypothalamus glands, balance hormones, increase endorphin release, regulate metabolism, stabilize blood sugar levels, increase impulse control, reduce hunger and food cravings, benefitting digestion and elimination, clearing toxins, relieving anxiety and helping calm the nervous system.
Like any healthy weight management system, acupuncture is not a magic bullet for weight loss and results cannot be expected overnight. Losing weight in the healthiest, most effective, and lasting way takes dedication on the patient's part to commit to getting regular acupuncture treatments, adopting healthy eating habits, and sticking to an exercise program. That being said, due to the holistic nature of Chinese medicine, following a comprehensive weight loss plan that includes acupuncture in conjunction with dietary therapy and possibly an herbal regimen can have a profound effect not only on the person’s ability to achieve and maintain a healthy weight, but also on their overall physical and emotional health and vitality.
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