Treating Diabetes with Acupuncture

Diabetes is a disease in which insulin is not produced or not properly used by the body and is a primarily caused by a dysfunction of the pancreas.  It is estimated that 25.8 million people have Diabetes in the United States today.  In order to manage diabetes, it is essential for people to make healthy lifestyles choices in diet, exercise and other health habits.

Acupuncture and herbal medicine have been used to treat diabetic patients for over 2000 years. Acupuncture and oriental medicine addresses each patient individually to eliminate symptoms associated with diabetes and reduce the need for insulin. Treatments will focus on regulating the circulation of blood and Qi and balancing organs to improve the functioning of the pancreas.

Several studies have demonstrated that acupuncture can correct metabolic disorders such as hyperglycemia, overweight, hyperphagia, excessive thirst, inflammation, blurry vision, fatigue and more. In addition, acupuncture can improve insulin sensitivity. Acupuncture treatment for Diabetics are usually on-going and typically used long term, as acupuncture treats symptoms but does not cure diabetes.  Treatments can also treat complications of diabetes such as peripheral neuropathy.

Chinese medicine has identified over 20 acupuncture points that can help control blood sugar symptoms.  Acupuncture is an excellent treatment for assisting younger people more recently diagnosed with diabetes in controlling blood sugar as well as reducing the cardiovascular complications and managing cholesterol levels.

Chinese herbal formulas are an important component to the treatment of diabetes. Different formulas may be affective for different people, so practitioners may try several different approaches. Studies have shown that American ginseng can improve glucose tolerance and is often added to herbal formulas. More studies have recently found that berberine has insulin sensitizing effects. Many other Chinese herbs have been used successfully for thousands of years to treat and reduce the associated symptoms of diabetes. A recent study that included 1,391 people showed that Chinese herbal formulas helped to control blood sugar in people with pre-diabetes at high risk of developing diabetes. In China acupuncture and herbal medicine are used with traditional Western diabetes drugs like insulin injections.

Beneficial foods for diabetic patients includes spinach, pears, soybeans, millet, Chinese yam, water chestnuts and sea cucumbers because they clear heat and nourish fluids in the body.  Bitter melon helps to control blood sugar levels and can be found in most oriental stores. Diabetic patients should avoid hot and spicy foods as well as alcohol.

When treating diabetes, Acupuncture and oriental medicine can assist the body to regain its normal healthy functioning. Chinese medicine practitioners recommend a combination of Western and Chinese medicine to treat diabetes.   Add Acupuncture to your arsenal when fighting Diabetes!

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