reasons why people get acupuncture #4 – balance hormones!
It’s a bit reductionist to think of life as a bucket of chemicals, and at the same time, the factual complexity is mind blowing!
While it’s important and super cool to understand endocrine glands and the hormones they secrete, one of the simplest and most effective ways to treat hormonal imbalances, is through Traditional East Asian Medicine. Because this is such a HUGE topic, this article focuses mainly on a just a few hormones and a few of their functions.
What are Balanced Hormones?
Hormones are the communication molecules of the body, telling every system how to behave, how to metabolize, sleep, when to menstruate or not, how to regulate body temperature, and on and on. The intercommunication of the 60+ hormones is truly a miraculous marvelous symphony. It’s so finite and delicate and complex, that sometimes medications help imbalances, but sometimes they miss the mark. Acupuncture to the rescue. Because acupuncture is energetic, it helps the body to regulate and balance itself. By design it allows a return to homeostasis, which is when everything is in balance.
Hormone Production & Detoxification
Many hormones, including the sex hormones such as estrogens, progesterone, and testosterone, and stress hormones like cortisol, are synthesized from cholesterol. Because stress is the response to perceived danger or threat to survival, that response, such as increased cortisol or adrenaline, is prioritized. When constant perceived stress is present, this means resources can be diverted from the less necessary (sex/reproductive) in order to keep you “alive”. This is why many people are diagnosed with low estrogen, progesterone, testosterone, etc.
On the other hand, hormones also need to be metabolized, broken down, and recycled or excreted. When this is impaired, too much of a hormone can build up. What can interfere? Well, it’s the liver’s job to metabolize nearly everything we ingest and every hormone. And liver toxicity or sluggishness is very commonplace in our hectic modernized society. With an overwhelmed liver, estrogen and other chemicals can build up, and this too can lead to hormonal imbalance symptoms. Again, a big topic, so can’t get into all of it in this short discussion. But the solution is supporting the liver’s natural detoxification pathways in order to balance.
Hormones, Fertility, and a Natural Approach
Our approach to fertility at Energy Flow goes beyond analyzing hormone levels. Fertility is a reflection of overall health of mind-body-spirit, and this is why Traditional East Asian Medicine (TEAM) is such a successful approach for conceiving and maintaining pregnancy. It’s the synergy of the acupuncture working with the entire hormonal symphony, the natural stress reduction effects, and the balancing and nurturing of the time-tested herbal formulas that account for this. Our medicine is not reductionist, it’s holistic. This makes all the difference, and can bring joy back to the baby-making journey.
Acupuncture and Herbal Medicine, along with other natural therapies, reduce stress, promote circulation, and improve natural communication pathways so that hormone balance and production regulates. We also take into account liver health, to relieve the strain on the liver, improving its ability to naturally detoxify the body and ease metabolism of hormones.
A Success Story of how Acupuncture and Herbs balance hormones
Melissa was diagnosed with Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS), but didn’t have some of the stand-out symptoms commonly associated with this metabolic disorder. her doctor had found that her estrogen and progesterone were low and testosterone high. She was in her mid twenties, yet had had only a handful of periods in her life due to anovulatory amenorrhea – her body was not releasing an egg every month and thus not menstruating. She came to me to get help conceiving a second child. Her first was conceived with assisted reproductive therapy, but she wanted to get to the root cause this time.
Literally after 2 acupuncture sessions and some herbs, she got a period. Well that worked quickly! We continued to work on the chronic digestive issues since everything is connected, and continued to support hormonal regulation with acupuncture, herbs, and TBM (Total Body Modification). The next month, the period didn’t come, and I thought, well of course the cycle won’t be regulated this quickly. But I was wrong – she was already pregnant naturally!
Trust Your Body to Know
No matter the diagnosis from your conventional doctor, don’t take that as gospel. Your body’s wisdom runs deep, and with the right nudges it can be set back into rhythm. The conductor, musicians, and audience just all need to be in harmony!