History & How It Works

ChinaAcupuncture theory is rooted in Taoist philosophy. Although acupuncture practice dates from much earlier, with evidence of stone needles from 2000 BC, the earliest known medical acupuncture text is Huang Di Nei Jing (The Yellow Emperor Classic of Internal Medicine), dated around 300 BC. Acupuncture practice gradually evolved and was refined over the centuries; it has been researched in recent decades in both China and Western countries. In China today, acupuncture is routinely used in hospitals alongside Western medicine to treat both acute and chronic cases.

Acupuncture is based on the theory that Qi (pronounced chee) circulates throughout the body in channels. Blockage or deficiency of energy flow will lead to disease and discomfort. Acupuncture uses very fine, single use, disposable needles to affect the flow of energy in the body and to bring balance to the patient.

Much research has been done to try to explain acupuncture’s efficacy in terms of Western science. One theory explains acupuncture in terms of blocking of nerve conduction; another says that endorphins (the brain’s ‘feel good’ hormones) produced during acupuncture treatments are responsible for its effects. Recently, a University of Vermont professor has been looking at the physical effects of inserting a needle and how that might affect cell function. While we don’t have any concrete answers defining how it works, acupuncture has been shown to be effective over the millennia.

To see JoAnn discuss more about how acupuncture works and how it can benefit you, click here.



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