In my office, “how does acupuncture work” is a very common question. Often new patients have no idea what to expect, and there is a bit of a magical aura around acupuncture. Especially when I put a needle in the ankle, and immediately the opposite wrist feels better. But it isn’t magic, it’s medicine, and there are 5 prevailing theories that the modern scientific community has come up with to explain acupuncture:
Augmentation of Immunity Theory
Acupuncture increases levels of triglycerides, specific hormones, prostaglandins, white blood counts, gamma globulins, opsonins, and overall anti-body levels, which improves immune function.
Acupuncture stimulates the release of endorphins, neurotransmitters found in the brain with morphine-like properties.
Acupuncture stimulates specific neurotransmitters (like serotonin or noradrenaline) . These neurotransmitters regulate the nervous system, allowing us to properly react to external and internal stimuli. This is the regulation of our reactions to things, like becoming overly stressed, or wanting to go to sleep all the time. [Read more…]