March 2011 : Acupuncture and Obesity

Obesity and Acupuncture

Many Acupuncturists advertise the ability to help people lose weight. It’s an attractive offer now that approximately 65% of American adults are overweight. But does it work? And if it does, how? If it were truly an easy and fast approach to weight loss, why isn’t everyone doing it already?

First of all, why are Americans suddenly so overweight? The problem of childhood obesity has been labeled epidemic by the Centers for Disease Control. What has changed so dramatically? The true answer isn’t one we really want to hear – it’s our own fault and only we can change it. First on the list of culprits is a ridiculously sedentary lifestyle. Exercise is seen as a chore. We have more and more conveniences in our lives and hardly ever have to put forth any physical effort to get something done. Our children sit and interact with a television or computer screen instead of running around outside with friends. We mostly watch sports as opposed to participate in them and no one walks anywhere once they have a car.

Next on the list of reasons for our societal obesity is the empty nutrition and high caloric content of a vast majority of the food we consume. If it comes to you thru your car window, it isn’t good for you or your children. If it comes in a box with lots of plastic packaging, it isn’t good for you or your children. Only whole, real foods like fruits, vegetables, nuts, and limited amounts of lean meat are what you need for proper nutrition. Water is all you need for proper hydration of your body. Again, if it has a pop-top, it isn’t good for you or your children.

So what does acupuncture do for you when you’re trying to lose weight? It can’t do nearly as much as you can do for yourself. Acupuncture and Chinese herbs can help with digestive issues you may be having that contribute to keeping extra weight on. Acupuncture can also help with the cravings and anxiety that come with changing your lifestyle to one that is healthier for you and your family. It can help support you physically and mentally while going thru the process of losing weight. But fundamentally, the answer lies in your own hands. You must be willing to make the changes that will help you become healthier. You must be committed to and focused on your goals.

There are no easy and fast approaches to losing weight. Don’t fall for all the tricks and gimmicks out there that say they will help you lose weight. Think about this – why is the weight loss industry a multi-billion dollar one while Americans continue to put on weight? You don’t need fancy equipment or a stack of pre-packaged meals. Quick fix options only backfire in the long term since you may lose a little weight but invariably put more back on. For American society to become healthier and leaner we must make some serious changes in our perception of food, convenience, and activity. Nothing else will work.

Become a Fan of LHHC Tampa on Facebook