Patient asks, Can acupuncture help my digestion?
Bloating? Yes. Acupuncture treatments work to move the qi, which increases the circulation in your belly of blood, oxygen, and the food you just ate.
Constipation? Yes. Acupuncturists expect a healthy body to move their bowels 1-3 times per day. If you go much less than that, we consider you to have some constipation. There are many acupuncture points we use to support more movement in the digestive system and they aren't all located on your abdomen. Sometimes, we also use Cupping (an adjunct method to acupuncture) on the belly which feels awesome and helps to increase local circulation to the intestines.
Loose stool or Diarrhea? Yes. A 2002 review article in Gut Magazine summarizes some of the current data with this: “Acupuncture promotes gastric peristalsis in subjects with low initial gastric motility and suppresses peristalsis in those with active initial motility.” So if you feel like you move your bowels too much or too little, acupuncture can help. If the diarrhea is due to parasites, the acupuncture can boost your immune system and there are also some effective herbal formulas we can use to flush out your system and bring you back to a healthy digestive baseline.
Don't be shy about talking to your acupuncturist about your digestion... remember, Everybody Poops!