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Acupuncture Supports Healthy Aging

Most people think of acupuncture for pain relief, and it is great for this.

Less well known is that it is also very effective for reducing negative effects of aging. This is particularly true when used preventively or in the early to mid-stages of signs of aging.

Here is a list of some of the major signs of aging and the effect acupuncture has on them:

Loss of Energy and Increased Fatigue

As we age, energy levels can drop. This is true even if we eat well, exercise and live a healthy lifestyle. This has to do with sleep issues, hormone imbalances, digestive inefficiency, etc.

There are major acupuncture points on the body that address these issues. Two points in particular, translated as “Three Mile” points, have the effect of increasing available energy in the body. The ancient Chinese walking through the mountains would get tired and stop to stimulate these points. Afterward, they’d have enough energy to walk three more miles.

Another cause of energy loss is poor blood sugar regulation as in diabetes and hypoglycemia. Research published in the American Journal of Chinese Medicine showed acupuncture effectively regulating blood sugar in obese women. Well-regulated blood sugar results in greater, more even energy levels.

Lower Immune Health

More frequent colds or even pneumonia, longer healing time from injuries and greater susceptibility to life-threatening health issues like cancer accompany reduced immune function.

Acupuncture stimulates T-Lymphocytes and NK Lymphocytes, two of the most important immune system guardians in the body. Stronger lymphocytes speed recovery from bacterial and viral diseases.

Insomnia

Lack of adequate sleep prevents healing and regeneration while at the same time increasing the likelihood of diabetes and other health issues. For some types of insomnia, acupuncture is up to 90% effective.

Hormone Imbalances

As we age, cortisol (the stress hormone) increases relative to other hormones and eventually creates permanent adrenal stress. This affects estrogen & testosterone production as well as quality of life.

Acupuncture can help the body break the cycle of stress and improve hormone profiles. It does this by:

  • Reducing the effects of stress on the body and regulating cortisol levels.
  • Balancing the autonomic nervous system, the master controller of hormone regulation.
  • Supporting and strengthening adrenal related sex hormones such as testosterone and estrogen.

Bone Loss

Bone loss affects both men and women over 50. This has a lot to do with hormone imbalances (see above). In addition to addressing hormone issues, acupuncture also has a direct effect of reversing bone loss from osteoporosis.

Loss of Mental Focus & Clarity

Some people loose their focus and clarity with age. Acupuncture can help strengthen the mind and improve focus issues.

Summary

If you review the above applications of acupuncture to fight aging, you will notice an interesting trend. The trend is that acupuncture has the capability of increasing healthy balance in the body.

For example, it increases energy, while also improving sleep. It strengthens the body (bone strength) while simultaneously relaxing it (reducing stress hormones). And it increases some hormones while regulating excesses of others.

The western medical term for this ability to balance both sides of a physiological process is “homeostasis,” which means self-balancing. You can probably see that the reason acupuncture is so useful for reducing signs of aging is it’s ability to trigger the body’s own self-balancing tendencies.

If you’d like more information on using acupuncture to combat the effects of aging, please contact me by clicking here.

All the best to you for your health and happiness,

Dr. Bruce


References:

Hyperhealth Pro Database, In-Tele-Health, Hansville, WA, 2008.

Cabioglu MT, Ergene N. Changes in levels of serum insulin, Cpeptide and glucose after electroacupuncture and diet therapy in obese women. Am J Chin Med. 2006;34(3):367–376.

Sato, T., et al. Acupuncture stimulation enhances splenic natural killer cell cytotoxicity in rats. Japanese Journal of Physiology. 46(2):131-136, 1996.

Lin, Y. Acupuncture treatment for insomnia and acupuncture analgesia. Psychiatry Clin Neurosci. 49(2):119-120, 1995.

Prospective Tests on Biological Models of Acupuncture, Shang, Charles, published in the Oxford Journals’ Evidence-based Complementary & Alternative Medicine. eCAM 2009 6(1):31-39; doi:10.1093/ecam/nem122

Feng Y, Lin H, Zhang Y, et al. Electroacupuncture promotes insulin-like growth factors system in ovariectomized osteoporosis rats. Am J Chin Med. 2008;36(5):889–897.

{ 1 comment… add one }
  • KarenMarch 8, 2011, 8:15 pm

    It all sounds fabulous! Can’t wait to see you for more. 🙂

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