Source : mindbodygreen.com
Acupuncture has been used for thousands of years to enhance fertility. The practice of placing thin sterilized needles in specific acupuncture points, typically in combination with customized herbal formulas, targeted nutrition, and lifestyle modifications, has long been believed to treat some of the causes of infertility.
While acupuncture is still used to help couples conceive naturally, studies now show it can also be helpful during assisted reproductive technology cycles like intrauterine insemination (IUI) and in vitro fertilization (IVF). Using acupuncture in conjunction with modern fertility treatments combines the best of Eastern and Western medicine, to work together toward the goal of conception.
Here is some of the science behind how working with an acupuncturist while trying to conceive can help:
1. Promoting ovulation
One of the most common reasons a woman cannot conceive is lack of ovulation (anovulation) or very irregular ovulation. One reason for anovulation is polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), a collection of systemic factors creating congested ovaries that do not ovulate at all or ovulate very irregularly. PCOS is the most common hormonal disorder and affects as many as 5 million women of reproductive age in the U.S.
Another reason for anovulation is hypothalamic amenorrhea, a technical name for when the brain and ovaries do not communicate and the ovaries are taking a nap. This is what happens when some women rapidly lose weight, are on too restrictive of a diet, or their BMI is too low and their periods stop. In both cases, hypothalamic amenorrhea and PCOS, studies show acupuncture can help women begin to ovulate regularly. For example, in one study, women with PCOS who received acupuncture treatments for 10 to 13 weeks saw an increase in ovulation frequency, compared to women who only received therapeutic counseling. It is believed this is because acupuncture can stimulate beta-endorphin production, which in turn can stimulate hormones that initiate ovulation and menstruation.
Incorporating targeted nutrition, supplements, and herbs under the guidance of an acupuncturist can be especially helpful for managing the other symptoms associated with these conditions as well, such as acne, insulin resistance, maintaining a healthy BMI, and digestive disorders.
30 YEARS OF HELL I endured the agony of endometriosis for three decades… until running and acupuncture ‘cured’ it
Source : The Sun
IMAGINE feeling like you've been run over by a truck for one week a month... every month.
That's what Cécile's period felt like during the worst episodes of her endometriosis.
Up until a year ago, the agonising gynaecological condition left the 42-year-old in so much pain she could barely drag herself out of bed to make a cup of tea.
Fast forward 12 months and incredibly, she's managed to run two marathons and a series of half marathons.
How? Well, Cécile claims that exercise has given her back her life by significantly reducing her symptoms - that and acupuncture.
'Untreatable, unbearable pain'
"My symptoms started shortly after my periods began, aged 12," she tells The Sun.
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Source : House Beautiful
In case you've been off the grid for the past few months, HGTV's Christina Anstead and her husband, Wheeler Dealers star Ant Anstead are expecting a baby boy, and it's the couple's first child together, but their fifth collectively. After struggling with infertility due to polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), the Christina on the Coast star believed she couldn't have any more children...until she went to an acupuncturist, she says.
After struggling to conceive her second child with ex-husband and Flip or Flop co-star Tarek El Moussa, Christina never believed she could get pregnant again. She told People in their latest issue that because of the stress she was under, she wanted to give acupuncture a go to help her deal with it. "I explained to the woman that I had polycystic ovaries. She told me, 'Oh, I used to have that too. I think I can [help]," Christina told the magazine. Not even a week later, the soon-to-be mama of five conceived.
Though Christina says she knows acupuncture won't necessarily help everyone struggling with infertility, professionals report it does have a positive effect on some women with infertility. According to the American Pregnancy Association, "acupuncture, frequently combined with herbal medicine, has been used for centuries to treat some, but not all, causes of infertility."
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Source : Get the Gloss
It's more powerful than therapy or drugs to balance emotions during turbulent times says Sarah Vine. Here she describes how acupuncture changed her life
Stress, I find, is a vicious circle. The more hectic life is the harder it is to find time take care of ourselves; the less we take care of ourselves the more stressed we become. When I’m up against it - and right now the challenges seem never-ending - I find it very hard to create the time and space I need to maintain an even keel. Work, teenagers, dogs, house, family - all seem to take priority over my own health. And so I cancel the gym, put off the dentist, reschedule the GP.
There is however one thing I never skip, no matter how bonkers things get. And that’s my acupuncture.
Most people think of acupuncture as the sort of thing you do to treat acute conditions, such as a frozen shoulder or a bad back. But what I’ve found is that if you see the right person on a regular basis, it can have a raft of other benefits too. Practised in a certain way, it acts as a kind of mental and physical therapy, rebalancing energy in the body, opening up blockages and generally contributing to a calming and quietening of the mind.
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Source : BBC.co.uk
For some women, the menopause and the years leading up to it, can be a time of troubling emotional and physical symptoms. Hormone replacement therapy (HRT) eases symptoms like hot flushes and sweats, but it's not suitable for all women.
Now, a small study published in BMJ Open suggests acupuncture may be worth considering.
The Danish study found that five weeks of acupuncture in women with menopausal symptoms reduced hot flushes, night sweats, sleep disturbances and emotional problems. Researchers at the University of Southern Denmark cautioned that they couldn't rule out that the results were down to the placebo effect.
The placebo effect is where a treatment works because a patient believes it will, rather than as a result of the treatment itself.
One of the study authors, Prof Frans Boch Waldorff, from the University of Southern Denmark, said: "We can't explain the underlying mechanism behind acupuncture, nor determine how much of the effect is caused by placebo.
"But this was a safe, cost-effective and simple procedure, with very few side-effects reported by the women.
"Women seeking acupuncture treatment for menopausal symptoms should be informed of the current evidence, and its limitations, so they can make a decision."
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Source : VanityFair.com
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have made a habit of breaking royal traditions, and it appears as if the birth of their first child in April will be no exception. The couple is weeks away from moving into their new home at Frogmore Cottage and are finalizing preparations for the baby as well. That includes planning a natural delivery, an acupuncture regimen for Meghan, and learning a labor technique called hypno-birthing, sources close to Meghan and Harry say.
As her due date draws near, according to sources, Meghan has sought the help of acupuncturist-to-the-stars Ross Barr to assist them as she comes to the end of her third trimester. “Meghan has been having regular acupuncture sessions to help her unwind and relax. It’s brilliant for the blood circulation and boosting blood flow to the uterus. She plans to use acupuncture right up to her due date,” says a source close to Barr. The couple reportedly checked into Barr’s private clinic in the run-up to their wedding to help them cope with the stress.
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Source : TheChalkboardMag.com
Forget the fact that most acupuncturists are doctors of traditional Chinese medicine and skilled herbalists, acupuncture itself is a wellness protocol that offers big benefits — especially for those living an urban lifestyle. (We’ve got our eye on you.)
If you’ve never experienced the benefits of acupuncture, the idea of getting poked with needles to relax might sound like a joke. But committing to routine acupuncture appointments is actually a very easy, low maintenance habit that can help to heal pain and fight chronic stress.
We spoke with Beverly Hills-based acupuncturist and herbalist, Dr. Robert Youngs, to talk to us about the benefits of acupuncture, the impact he sees with regular visits, and why its worth the commitment…
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Source: The Telegraph
Acupuncture classrooms and clinics are appearing worldwide, from countries such as Britain and the United States, to emerging economies including Brazil and Ethiopia.
Acceptance of the 2,000-year-old form of alternative medicine has spread far beyond Chinese communities. In recent years acupuncture has become the new healthy lifestyle buzz after developing a fan base among royals and celebrities, including Megan Merkel (now the Duchess of Sussex), the actor Matt Damon and the singers Sheryl Crow and Madonna.
Not only is it commonly used to treat pain, nausea and headaches, it is also applied in beauty clinics for conditions such as skin rejuvenation, stress release and weight loss.
Mike Cummings, medical director of the British Medical Acupuncture Society, said: “Acupuncture holds a unique position in our medical world today, because some of the benefits it brings to the human body find no substitute in other medical practices.”
It is encouraging to see that acceptance has accelerated amongst medical professionals, especially as the number of high-quality academic articles on acupuncture published in top medical journals has grown, and new research findings are proving the clinical effects of acupuncture.
The treatment involves an acupuncturist inserting fine needles into a patient’s body. No substances are injected through the needles. Instead, they are said to improve the smooth flow of life force energy, known in Chinese as qi, from the body’s primary organs to the skin, muscles, tendons, bones and joints.
These channels through which qi flows are called meridians, along which most acupuncture points are located. In other words, the needles work by repairing damage to the body’s infrastructure to ensure that qi can flow smoothly.
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Source : HealthCMi
Acupuncture alleviates sciatica and MRIs reveal that acupuncture causes important pain relief related changes in brain functional connectivity. Affiliated Huashan Hospital of Fudan University researchers gathered objective and subjective data in a controlled clinical trial consisting of patients suffering from sciatica. Visual Analogue Scale (VAS) scores indicate that acupuncture produces significant decreases in both pain intensity levels and frequency of pain. Additionally, MRIs show that acupuncture restores pain-free connectivity related activity in the brain; acupuncture changed the functional state of the brain such that patients had greater resting states.
The researchers determined that acupuncture regulates the default mode network (DMN). In addition, the DMN regulation induced by acupuncture treatment correlates to significant reductions in pain for sciatica patients. The DMN is a complex of interconnected activated and deactivated brain regions and the DMN is at its peak activity level when the brain is at rest. Acupuncture facilitated key changes to the brain to allow for the resting state to return. The research indicates that sciatica-related pain disturbs the normal DMN pattern and that acupuncture restores the pattern.
Using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), the research team discovered that acupuncture “raises negative activation in the brain’s default mode network (DMN) of chronic sciatica patients, especially in the dorsal medial prefrontal cortex and anterior cingulate cortex.” The cingulate cortex and the frontal cortex are known to be involved in pain-related subjective perception and cognition, memory, emotional responses, and attentional responses.
Prior research confirms that decreased negative activation in the DMN is associated with increased pain. Another fMRI study compared chronic lower back pain patients with healthy volunteers. The results showed that patients with chronic lower back pain had significantly decreased negative activation in the default mode network (DMN) of the brain. Negative activation is a form of functional connectivity found during the brain’s resting state.
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