Weight Loss Using the Porcupine Diet
Ready, set, go … a dashing start to a Weight Loss Program
As much as we wish and hope there is no miracle cure for weight loss. We all hear about commitment to nutrition, exercise, body and life style changes are the true solutions to weight loss. But a truly committed person, who is inspired to lose weight, not only for their appearance; instead just for the sake of being healthy, can use acupuncture and Chinese medicine to help them begin, achieve, and maintain their weight loss goals. If you are ready to begin losing weight or have been trying to lose weight and are having difficulties, acupuncture can be a valuable adjunct therapy to your weight loss program.
In recent studies published in the Medical Acupuncture-A Journal for Physicians by Physicians, acupuncture helped promote weight loss. The key word to keep in mind is “promote”. In the study 20 women between the ages of 22 and 42, all with BMI (Body mass Index) higher than 27, were divided into 2 groups. The group of women who followed a regimen of 2,000 calories per day diet, daily exercise and weekly ear acupuncture treatments lost an average more than twice as much weight as those only dieted and exercised, even if they did not comply exactly with the treatment plan.
You say Acupuncture, How does it help?
It is important to address both the physiological and psychological aspects of weight loss. Since Acupuncture and Chinese herbs treat the physical, mental, and emotional components to any illness, there are several ways that they can benefit you while you are trying to lose weight.
· Regulates Metabolism: Acupuncture also helps to regulate metabolism.
A history of irregular eating, overeating and even thyroid dysfunction all contribute to a slow metabolism. Acupuncture can help to increase metabolism by stimulating the thyroid and endocrine glands as your body adjusts to the changes in your diet and exercise. Affecting the endocrine system also helps to stabilize blood sugar levels.
· Stops Food Cravings: Regular acupuncture treatments can help curb food cravings. Support from acupuncture helps to eliminate cravings and increases the will power to overcome them.
· Benefits Digestions: Over time, things like crash diets, irregular eating habits and excessive greasy or fattening foods all take their toll in the digestion. Chronic symptoms such as bloating, gas, heartburn, constipation or diarrhea are all signs that the digestive system is out of balance. Acupuncture can help to harmonize the digestive organs and aids proper digestion to ensures that you are getting the nutrients you need from your food so you feel less hungry.
· Calming and Relaxing: When acupuncture needles are inserted into specific points on the body and in the ear it stimulates the release of endorphins. Endorphins have a calming and relaxing effect on the body. Naturally releasing endorphins makes it easier to deal with stress, frustration and anxiety, which can be triggers for emotional eating, overeating and bingeing on fattening foods.
· Cleansing: Acupuncture treatments during weight loss help to cleanse your system. Toxins that have been built up over time from excess weight and adipose tissue (fat) can cause symptoms such as fatigue, acne and depression. These can be relieved or eliminated with acupuncture whether or not you are trying to lose weight.
Herbal Therapy and Nutritional Information
Dietary recommendations are individualized from a Chinese medical perspective. Many people trying to lose weight struggle with maintaining certain dietary restrictions or get sucked into “fad diets.” Most people don’t see results, it’s not due to a lack of will power but, in part, to the nutrition and sustenance your body needs. Not everyone is meant to live without carbohydrates or be a vegetarian. Chinese medicine incorporates your personal health and the dietary recommendations that are specific to your constitution. Nutrition plans based on Chinese medicine are made to support not just weight loss, but curb food cravings, sustain energy and leave your body feeling an overall sense of health and well being.
When it comes to herbs those that have been used commercially, such as Ephedra, that aren’t meant to be for weight loss aids. It is unsafe to ingest any herbs in which they aren’t meant for proper weight loss. This is why it is important to have your acupuncturist prescribe Chinese herbs that can safely be used for your body constitution. Herbs taken on a daily basis continue to work on the body’s digestive system by balancing and strengthening the digestive organs. This in turn helps metabolism, appetite, and unhealthy food cravings.
The amount of acupuncture treatments necessary depends on the patient’s goals for losing weight, the speed at which they want to lose, and their commitment to a new, healthier lifestyle. In general, in the beginning it is important to come for consistent weekly or bi-weekly treatments to help get you started. Once you are feeling comfortable with your new weight loss plan, the number of treatments will decrease anywhere from one to two visits a month. When you have reached your weight loss goals, you will move on to a maintenance phase and will only have to come every month or every other month, when the seasons change, to keep your system balanced and healthy.