Do you enthusiastically sign up for daunting tasks? Probably not too often, although some of us are more masochistic than others. If you do, the excitement is more than likely an eagerness to get said task behind you and out of the way. Cleaning the gutters for instance—get it out of the way, and it will be a while before you have to bother with that again. I’m not talking about chores, though. I’m talking about weight loss—A day in, day out task that requires thoughtfulness on a consistent basis. Ok, maybe daunting isn’t the most optimistic word, but how many of us look at it that way? It’s something to work at, plan for, and is much less convenient than easily swinging into a McDonald’s drive-thru when you’re starving and on your way from point a to point b.
If you’ve been trying to lose weight for a while, what are the roadblocks you’ve experienced? Does it seem that no matter what, you just can’t shed the pounds? There are a number of things that can impact weight: diet and exercise are the most obvious, but we must also remember hormones, high stress, and even attitude can put a stranglehold on those weight loss efforts.
Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) can be an extremely effective approach to weight loss. Acupuncture and herbal medicine, together or individually, work to bring the body back into homeostasis helping it to function more optimally. At Raja Wellness, this approach is personally tailored to fit your individual needs.
Acupuncture is the therapeutic modality of inserting very thin, flexible needles at certain points on the body. Think of these acupuncture points as little “reset buttons.” Resetting your body to a more stable, higher functioning state. Acupuncture treats many ailments—from digestive disorders to migraines, chronic pain to infertility. It also helps to regulate and balance hormones. It can ease stress as well, which can not only slow the body’s metabolic process but can send some of us into a stress-eating downward spiral. Acupuncture can also help reduce fluid retention by stimulating the endocrine system—which also helps to boost metabolism.
Sounds a little less daunting, doesn’t it? Despite our best intentions and efforts, the things going on inside our body can just get in the way sometimes, but we’re here to help! With side effects such as improved sleep quality, increased energy, pain reduction, and consequently an improved attitude, you may find yourself crushing any goal with ease.
(P.S. Not bad for side effects, amiright?)
Herbal medicine can also help improve your weight loss efforts. Certain medicinal herbs can also help to regulate hormones, reduce stress, decrease fluid retention, and balance the body. In conjunction with acupuncture, you’ll find it easier to reach your pound-shedding goals.
Instead of just focusing on counting calories or carbs or fitting in a daily exercise routine (though quite helpful!), consider addressing the underlying issues of your body as a whole—especially if you’ve tried to lose weight and just couldn’t seem to keep the momentum going no matter how hard you’ve tried.
We’re here to encourage and support you on your journey to wellness! If you’d like to find out more about acupuncture and herbal medicine for weight loss, give our office a call at (270) 506-3853 or set up a phone or in-person consultation here.
Nanopuncture is an acupuncture system developed by acupuncturist Dr. Clayton Shui. It is based on a system of acupuncture he learned in China while studying for his PhD.
The system, called Xing Nao Kai Qiao, which translates “awaken the spirit and open the orifices” was developed over the last 50 years by Dr. Dr. Shi Xue Min of Tianjin hospital, Tianjin China for the treatment of stroke. This hospital treats approximately 10,000 stroke patients a day and is featured in the documentary “9,000 Needles”, a film that followed the treatment of Devin Dearth a 39-year-old stroke patient from Central City KY.
After being hospitalized until he was stable, Devon was sent for physical rehabilitation where he made good progress considering the extensive, life-threatening nature of the stroke he sustained. Even though he was making excellent progress, he was discharged from the rehab hospital due to insurance issues.
At this point he was still unable to walk and required extensive 24-hour care. With Devin’s wife struggling to care for him at home, his family began searching for other treatment methods that would help him regain some of his function and increase his independence. It was during this time when Devin’s brother Doug discovered the cutting-edge stroke treatment at Tianjin Hospital.
He found that people from around the world were going to Tianjin hospital and were obtaining excellent results. It was then that Devon and his family knew this was something that they needed to try. After months of preparation Devin, his wife, and his brother Doug (who is also is a documentarian) set off for Tianjian. Devin spent the next three months receiving intensive treatment which included acupuncture, herbal medicine, and physical rehabilitation.
Upon arriving, Devon was wheelchair bound, unable to move the side of his body effected by the stroke, had moderate speech difficulties, and dependent upon assistance to perform even the most basic of tasks. At the end of his time at Tianjin, Devon was able to walk with limited assistance, he had movement of his effected side, required minimal assistance to perform basic tasks, and his speech was substantially improved.
Based on his study under the supervision of Dr. Shi Xue Min, Dr. Clayton Shui (as mentioned above) developed and systematized a new acupuncture technique that applies essential elements of stroke acupuncture protocol to orthopedic and sports medical treatments for injury rehabilitation and prevention.
The result is a new, highly efficient system that can used to analyze the nervous system to determine where the its circulation and function is inhibited and will directly reset and reboot the patient’s nervous system in various parts of the body. This offers the patient significant neurovascular circulation benefits. Nanopuncture does this by using specific point protocols and needling techniques to activate the local nerve plexus, transmitting nerve impulses to the injured tissue, and increasing circulation. This increases range of motion, strength, relaxes tissues, and improves nerve firing.
Nanopuncture has been able to effectively treat neurological conditions such as:
Robert Cecil, one of our acupuncturists here at Raja Wellness, has received advanced training in this treatment technique and has been successfully implementing Nanopuncture with excellent results. While results are frequently seen after the first treatment, a treatment frequency of 3 times a week for 4 weeks is recommended. After this, a reassessment is performed and need for further treatment is then determined.
Did you know we can do Dry Needling?
It’s true, the needling techniques used in Dry Needling are among the first we learn in school. Dry Needling is an Acupuncture technique and as such should be performed only by professionals with an appropriate level of training such as a licensed acupuncturist or medical acupuncturist. Knowledge of anatomy and physiology is only one portion of the required skill set to safely and effectively use needles as a therapeutic tool. It is not a skill set that can be mastered in just a few hours.1
Acupuncturists understand the physiological basis for acupuncture as well as the underlying East Asian Medical Systems theory that underpins traditional treatment approaches (diagnosis, needling techniques, etc). Just because our licensure scope of practice isn’t full of biomedical definitions of acupuncture, it doesn’t mean that we don’t understand the physiological effect of our needles on our patients' bodies. A close examination of the acupuncture research literature easily shows the validity of this. Some acupuncture points and trigger points can be described using almost identical language when using biomedical definitions of these structures:
Trigger Point is a sensitive area in the muscle or connective tissue (fascia) that becomes painful when compressed. Pressing on a trigger point can cause referred pain and can help identify the external area in the body generating the pain.
Ashi acupuncture involves treating areas causing pain and dysfunction that are usually unknown to the patient, and which actually constitute the root cause of their physical pain or dysfunction. Adopting Ashi acupuncture as the primary treatment method when treating physical pain, numbness, tingling or burning due to inhibited circulation or nerve impingement, as well as a range of motion issues, is critical to clinical success.2
The term Ashi - literally 'Ah yes!' - Qian Jin Yao Fang (Thousand Ducat Formulas): ‘In terms of the method of Ashi, in speaking of a person who has a condition of pain, when squeezing, if there is a spot inside [we] do not ask if it is a [recognised] acupuncture point, because [we] located a painful spot and they said, “Ah yes!”. Needling and moxa-ing [the points] have proven effective in the past, thus they are called Ashi points.3
Use of Ashi or Trigger Points has been part of accepted acupuncture practice for over 4,000 years - the advent of biomedical terminology to describe them does not negate the long-standing history of these points as part of acupuncture practice. Simply needling a trigger point without addressing the underlying pattern of the patient (as is done in “dry needling” by those without in-depth training) can lead to poor outcomes for patients. Further, without appropriate training the idea that a “twitch” response is necessary for therapeutic benefit can lead to unnecessarily deep and aggressive needle techniques, undue pain and risk of injury to the patient. Lastly, without an understanding of acupuncture theory, efficacy of such techniques is often short-lived.
This issue is also complicated by the fact that most research into acupuncture and dry needling uses the same points, so it’s important to understand that many “trigger points” coincide with mapped acupuncture points and have actions far beyond the release of simple muscle tension.
“Trigger points can be verified objectively using magnetic resonance or ultrasound elastography or with intramuscular electromyography,”4 - As can acupuncture points - it is unclear in this article if trigger points are described as having the same anatomical structure as acupuncture points.
To get the most out of your “dry needling”, it is important to see a practitioner who understands the deeper framework behind these points, when to safely use trigger point needling, and when to use the other techniques and points to address any underlying issues causing the dysfunction in the first place.