Acupuncture Therapy for Weight Loss

Weight loss

Does Acupuncture Work for Weight Loss?

Acupuncture can increase your energy level, suppress your appetite, reduce cravings and irritability, and effectively reduce weight.

In combination with traditional methods of weight loss, subjects in several medical studies lost more weight when acupuncture was added to their weight-loss plan, as compared to control subjects. (These studies followed subjects for 4 weeks; longer term evidence is not available.)

However, no conclusions can be made on the effectiveness of acupuncture as a single weight loss method. Most medical studies have used acupuncture in combination with traditional methods of weight loss, such as dieting and exercise. The studies that did rely on acupuncture alone enrolled only were small and the results inconsistent, making it difficult to draw a conclusion.

Why Acupuncture May Produce Weight-Loss Results

Acupuncture is said to improve digestion, moderate metabolic rate, and regulate the body to correct any imbalances that are leading to weight control problems. There are two theories about why acupuncture may help in weight loss:

  • Acupuncture increases your general energy level, causing you to be more active than normal, which will in turn bring about weight loss.
  • Other therapists believe certain areas of the brain responsible for our eating habits respond to the stimuli from the therapeutic needles. The ear and the stomach are commonly used locations in acupuncture treatments for weight loss.

How to Lose Weight Safely

Acupuncture works best when you combine acupuncture therapy with a healthy diet and plenty of exercise. You may need to have weekly acupuncture treatments to feel the effects, or you may be able to get by with treatments every other week. How often you need help will depend on your individual constitution and emotional factors affecting your weight condition.

Follow these guidelines for healthy weight loss:

  • Eat a proper diet.
    Incorporating a diet high in protein and fiber will help you maintain a healthy lifestyle.
  • Drink plenty of fluids.
    Drinking water helps keep you hydrated while giving you a feeling of fullness.
  • Read food labels.
    You have to control your calorie intake in order to achieve your weight loss goals and maintain a healthy lifestyle.
  • Exercise, exercise, exercise.
    Exercise is vital, and will help burn fat and build muscle, which burns more calories.
  • Consider acupuncture therapy.
    Acupuncture may increase your overall energy level, making it easier for you to burn calories.
  • Lose weight slowly.
    Aim for 1 to 2 pounds a week.

What is Acupuncture?


Acupuncture is a 5000-year-old healing art that is considered by modern medicine to be a safe and natural practice with no side effects.

In acupuncture the body is seen as a grid of twelve dissecting energy channels which are called medians. These medians are believed to be active channels of energy along which flow the life force of Chi. It is believed that un-wellness is caused by interruptions in the flow of this vital energy.

The medicine of acupuncture uses very small needles (about the thickness of a human hair) which are injected into the skin in one or more specific sites throughout the body. The acupuncture practitioner will then gently stimulate the needles to open and harmonize the corresponding blocked energy median.

Acupuncture is safe and pain-free. We use only thinnest, single-use needles, and the insertion is very shallow—just under the skin. The acupuncturist will then leave the needles in place for several minutes, while you relax comfortably. The needles are then removed and discarded. Many patients report a sensation of feeling refreshed after an acupuncture session, which may be a result of improvement in the flow of Chi.

Acupuncture is not a one-time treatment—most conditions require several treatments for effective results. In addition, depending on the specific condition, a schedule of maintenance treatments may be recommended to cement the results.