Many people coming to The Acupuncture Clinic – Hastings often ask is there anything that acupuncture can do for blood problems such as anemia. Patients are often surprised to hear that acupuncture and Chinese herbs have been used for centuries to treat the symptoms of anemia such as tiredness, weakness and pale complexion. Anemia is in fact the most common disorder of the blood in the modern western medical practice and if severe can cause palpitations and shortness of breath.
The latest scientific evidence shows that acupuncture can actually increase the serum ferratin and lower the Total Iron Binding Capacity (TIBC). The test, TIBC, is used to measure the body’s ability to bind iron.
The researchers used just one acupuncture point known in Chinese as zu san li which translates as three leg mile. This acupuncture point has had the history of being used as a point to strengthen the body so much that a person could walk an extra three miles at the end of a day’s walking. The Three Leg Mile acupuncture point in Chinese medical terminology has the function of improving spleen function.
In traditional Chinese medicine there is a saying, the stomach takes in the food and the spleen processes the food. Stimulation of appropriate acupuncture points can improve nutrient and hence iron absorption. The point above can also treat tiredness, paleness, palpitations and shortness of breath, all symptoms associated with anemia.
It is only natural that the diet needs to be addressed as well but acupuncture can be the catalyst to improve the digestion and absorption of the food you eat.
Acupuncture is not just sticking a needle in the leg or somewhere. There are specific anatomical locations and sensitive pressure areas that the trained acupuncturist feels before inserting the needle. Needles are of different lengths and thicknesses depending on what type of effect the practitioner is aiming to achieve.
Once the needle is inserted, the practitioner uses a number of specific stimulation techniques where the needle is twisted in certain directions or lifted up and down a specific number of times.
The research that was done above, involved specific needling lift and thrust techniques to stimulate the energy of the acupuncture point to enhance its strengthening ability.
Patients often report that iron supplements make them constipated. In addition, the cause of the anemia needs to be addressed in order to get longer lasting health and balance.
Acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine is an effective way to help improve nutrient absorption and treat the symptoms of anemia.