Acupuncture: What’s the Point?
Your best friend raves about it for her back pain. Your mom swears it’s the only thing that got rid of her hot flashes. Then your coworker went in for his insomnia and came out sleeping better than ever before.
What’s their secret? Acupuncture!
Thousands of years ago, the ancient Chinese doctors figured out that if they inserted needles into specific points on the body they could effectively re-balance the healthy flow of Qi (“chee”, a.k.a. “life energy” or “vital force”) and blood, and unblock stagnation along energetic pathways on the body called channels.
Once blockages are moved from these channels, the body is able to heal itself far more efficiently.
Today we use very fine, sterile, disposable needles along those same points, making acupuncture even safer and more effective than it was when it was discovered. And yes, it really does work!
Scientific studies are starting to demonstrate acupuncture’s healing effects on a cellular level.
Here are some of acupuncture’s proven benefits:
Elevated mood & immunity - Acupuncture has been shown to boost endorphins, a.k.a. “happy chemicals,” which are responsible for generating feelings of happiness and relaxation, as well as cranking up your immune system. Added bonus: endorphins are also known to decrease hunger!
Reduced pain - Endorphins and other body chemicals activated by acupuncture, such as enkephalins and norepinephrine, are known to communicate with nerve receptors in the body to relieve pain. Some of these are 10-200 times more potent than morphine!
Reduced stress & activated healing - By stimulating the parasympathetic nervous system, acupuncture naturally puts the body into a deep state of relaxation, reducing stress and switching on the body’s endogenous self-healing mechanisms.
Increased blood flow - Acupuncture increases critical blood flow to areas of the body in which blood flow is impeded. When your body receives more oxygen and nutrients from increased blood flow, it becomes far more resilient and less likely to suffer pain or illness.
Muscle relaxation - Once muscles are relaxed, pressure is released from the joint structures and nerves, and pain and discomfort are reduced.
I sincerely hope that this helped to clear up the questions that have been dancing around in your mind about acupuncture. When you’re ready to experience the blissful effects of this beautiful medicine, visit your local acupuncturist!