When people start a detoxification plan, they often think about boxed cleanses and cleaning up their diet for a week or two. Acupuncture is not often associated with the detoxification process, though it can be an extremely helpful addition to whatever cleansing technique you have in mind – whether it be guided by a naturopath or done on your own.
Acupuncture both augments detoxification and decreases its side effects. Depending on the state and history of your health, your diet, exercise regimen, and stress, you may have more or less side effects from a rapid and radical change in your diet. Supplements, such as those in boxed cleanses, are often provoking, in that they are designed to move toxins out of the liver, colon, etc. However, as I mentioned in my previous post, if the organs of elimination are not functioning optimally, these toxins have nowhere to go and cause unwanted reactions such as headache, fatigue, muscle pain and tension, nausea, lightheadedness, rash or other skin disorders, gas and bloating, constipation or diarrhea, sleep disruption, among others. Adding acupuncture into the mix can significantly decrease the likelihood of these symptoms appearing and can help mitigate those that are already present.
How can acupuncture do both at the same time? Chinese medicine was designed to bring the health of an individual back into equilibrium. In other words, acupuncture gives the body the necessary tools it needs to restore health. If the organs of elimination are open, acupuncture may push the liver to detoxify more. Acupuncture may also help you get deeper and more restful sleep, as this is the main way the body heals. If you are currently experiencing a myriad of side effects, acupuncture can help to mitigate these and create stability in the system. Whether acupuncture acts as a restoratively or provokingly depends on what your body needs at that time. This is the beauty of Chinese medicine; it works with your body to bring you to a better state of health.
Whenever people are considering a cleanse, or even a major diet or lifestyle change, I highly recommend acupuncture. It is more challenging for your body to adapt to large changes, and acupuncture acts as a guiding light for your system as it balances out. Of course you can pursue changes without acupuncture, but treatments makes the experience much easier, and tend to improve your health overall. It’s a great idea to continue after a cleanse or detox in order to minimize the need to do it again!