Acupuncture for weight loss

Effective Ways Acupuncture Can Help In Weight Loss

Acupuncture is the traditional Chinese medical practice of stimulating specific points on the body, primarily with the insertion of very thin needles through the skin.

Acupuncture has been the focus of many studies on its ability to manage pain — especially for headache and neck, back, knee, and osteoarthritis pain.

There have not, however, been as many studies on how acupuncture can help with other health issues such as weight loss.

Learn why is it worth it

Effect of Acupuncture on Body Weight Reduction

Advocates of acupuncture for weight loss believe that acupuncture can stimulate the body’s energy flow (chi) to impact factors that can reverse obesity such as:

  • increasing metabolism
  • reducing appetite
  • lowering stress
  • affecting the part of the brain that feels hunger

Weight gain, according to traditional Chinese medicine, is caused by body imbalance. That imbalance, according to ancient teachings, can be caused by a malfunctioning:

  • liver
  • spleen
  • kidney
  • thyroid gland
  • endocrine system

So, for weight loss, acupuncture treatments commonly target these areas of the body.

What Research Shows

Recent research shows that acupuncture may help with weight loss.

• One study compared the effectiveness of auricular (ear) acupuncture to body acupuncture in obese women and found that those who received auricular acupuncture lost more weight—approximately 8 pounds more—than those who received acupuncture on other parts of the body.

• Another study provided evidence that overweight females between 20 and 30 years old who received six weekly treatments of auricular acupuncture experienced a reduction in waist circumference.

• Many people gain weight as a result of being under stress. Research shows that acupuncture needles stimulate the release of endorphins—the body’s natural “feel good” hormones. This can create calming, relaxing effects that counteract the need for stress eating caused by tension, frustration, and anxiety.

When paired with lifestyle modifications, such as regular exercise and eating a balanced diet, a 2018 review of studies concluded that acupuncture is effective for weight loss.