Acupuncture for weight loss
It’s so easy and quick to gain a few extra kilos and so difficult and slow to lose them. An unhealthy diet, lack of physical exercise, the environment and genetics are some of the factors that can lead to weight gain; so does having an energy imbalance. And this is where acupuncture comes in.
“The Earth is surrounded by electromagnetic fields that have a direct influence on all of us”, says Philippa Harvey, a specialist in Traditional Chinese Medicine at SHA Wellness Clinic, “not in an esoteric sense, but in an electronic one. For a healthy balance of energy, we need to understand the impact of electrons, ions and protons on the human body”.
Thousands of years ago, the fundamental laws of electricity had not been discovered and, of course, the devices that harness electricity had yet to be invented, but the interrelationship between us and that vital energy that flows through nature and living things and gives life and meaning to all matter was already known. “This concept of essential force called Qi (pronounced chi) is not unique to traditional Chinese medicine but is found in almost all ancient civilisations. In Hinduism it is known as Prana (inspired air) and in Christianity it could be considered the soul”, says Philippa.
This vital energy flows through channels, called meridians, and an imbalance is caused when these channels get blocked. “Imagine the human body as an electronic circuit, a kind of smartphone. The device may be in perfect condition, but it doesn’t work right if we have too many apps open at the same time or the battery is low. By using acupuncture needles on these points, we can remove the blockages and get the energy flowing again”, adds Philippa.
SHA’s holistic approach is based on traditional Chinese medicine, which always seeks to get to the root of the problem rather than focusing solely on treating the symptoms. And being overweight is no exception. It is important to first determine what’s behind the need to eat (anxiety, emotional emptiness, sadness, anger, fear) before moving on to an acupuncture session. As Philippa explains, “the needles are like a screwdriver that we can use to increase or decrease the amount of Qi in a specific point of the meridian system. Thus, in addition to controlling food cravings, we stimulate weak organs and speed up the metabolism. The sessions last about half an hour and are painless, at most a slight prick can be felt. And I would recommend one session a month to keep the electronic system flowing in the best possible way”.
Of course, if you eat a diet rich in processed foods, fats, sugars and fizzy drinks and lead a sedentary lifestyle, the benefits of acupuncture for weight loss are severely limited. On the other hand, it has been shown to be highly effective as a complement to a healthy diet and daily physical exercise.
If you haven’t yet discovered what acupuncture can do for you, now is the ideal time because it fits perfectly into the new Western lifestyle, which has turned its eyes back to nature and natural therapies. “Now more than ever, people are taking more responsibility for their health and not just their illness”, says she Philippa.