People who struggle to lose weight know how frustrating it can be to try several methods and see little to no result. Some are skeptical or apprehensive about resorting to diet pills or surgery, two options that many also deem expensive. Although everyone should know that there is no magic trick to miraculously reach a target weight and maintain it long term without developing healthy eating and exercising habits, some people still look for natural treatments to complement these efforts and speed up the process. Acupuncture in Gainesville, FL, could provide that extra help you need to regulate your appetite and metabolism.
How Stress Can Affect Weight Control
Stress is one of the biggest obstacles to weight loss. Chances are that at least once you have either said or heard that stress makes you overeat and/or crave junk food. There is some truth to this. Long-term stress floods the body with the hormone cortisol, which increases appetite. On top of that, stress is associated to food preferences. Fat- and sugar-filled foods seem to inhibit activity in parts of the brain that produce and process stress, which is probably why many people have stressed-induced cravings for them and call them “comfort foods.” In addition, stressed people tend to lose sleep, exercise less and drink more alcohol, which are all linked to weight gain. Although Gainesville, FL acupuncture may not cause weight loss directly, it can release endorphins to calm you down and indirectly calm your appetite by providing relief for underlying stress and muscle tension.
Acupuncture Can Aid Weight Loss
There is a theory that inserting needles into specific acupuncture points in the outer part of the ear can influence appetite and metabolism. A randomized clinical trial of five ear acupuncture points for the treatment of overweight people was conducted in 91 Koreans who had not received any other weight control treatment within the past six months. The participants were divided randomly into three groups: treatment I, treatment II and a control group. The first group received acupuncture at the five ear points (Shen-men, Spleen, Stomach, Hunger, Endocrine); the second one received acupuncture only at the Hunger point; and the control group received sham acupuncture, meaning that the needles were removed immediately after insertion. The study, published in the British Medical Journal, found significant differences in body mass index (BMI) and body fat mass (BFM) between the treatment and control groups after eight weeks of treatment. Treatment groups I and II showed BMI reductions of 6.1 percent and 5.7 percent, respectively.
If you are curious about the potential effects of acupuncture on your weight loss plan and have realistic expectations for the treatment, there is no reason to not give Gainesville acupuncture a try. Keep in mind that, as studies suggest, it may take several sessions before you begin to see results.
Gainesville Acupuncturists Locals Can Trust
If your primary reason for trying acupuncture is an attempt to lose weight, let your therapist at Gainesville Holistic Healthcare know. Our licensed acupuncture physician can discuss goals with you, incorporate the treatment into a pre-established weight loss plan, and make sure you feel comfortable throughout every session. Contact us for more information about acupuncture Gainesville residents and visitors rely on.