Acupuncture treatment for diabetes

By  ,  Onlymyhealth editorial team
Jan 24, 2013

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  • Acupuncture for diabetes helps to lower blood glucose levels.
  • It lowers the release of pancreatic hormone glucagon.
  • Acupuncture also controls diabetes symptoms like polyphagia.
  • It improves blood circulation to the peripheral tissues.

The blood sugar levels are elevated in people with diabetes. In addition to elevated blood sugar level people with diabetes may have certain symptoms like dry mouth, increased thirst and frequent urination, increased frequency of urination during the night, increased hunger, blurred vision, dry and itchy skin, increased fatigue or drowsiness, weight loss, and slow-healing sores or frequent infections.


Glucose is the type of simple sugar that the cells use for energy. In people with diabetes blood glucose levels is elevated due to deficiency of insulin hormone. Insulin is a hormone that helps in metabolism of blood glucose. Insulin is produced in the body by the pancreas.

Acupuncture for diabetes

How does acupuncture help diabetic patients?

Acupuncture can effectively reduce blood sugar levels, in people with diabetes. It has been shown to be especially effective in people with type 2 diabetes (non-insulin dependent diabetes). Type 2 diabetes is the most common form of diabetes. According to studies done on the effect of acupuncture on diabetes, acupuncture can help diabetic patients in the following ways:

  • It helps to lower blood glucose levels

  • It lowers the release of pancreatic hormone glucagon (this hormones increases the blood sugar level)

  • Controls certain symptoms of diabetes like polyphagia (the urge to eat too much), polydipsia (excessive thirst) and polyuria (excessive passage of urine);

  • Improves blood microcirculation and  contractility of heart muscles

  • Improves blood circulation to the peripheral tissues

  • It has antiatherogenic, antioxidant and immunomodulating effects (these help to reduce the complications of diabetes)

  • Improves the lowered pain threshold

The Acupuncture Treatment for Diabetes

Acupuncture aims to restore and maintain health by stimulation of specific points on human body by insertion of needles. These points are called the acupuncture points and there are hundreds of acupuncture points in human body. There are about 20 acupoints in the body that are effective in lowering blood sugar.


Before starting acupuncture treatment the acupuncturists will take a detailed history and examine you. Your acupuncturists will choose the acupuncture points based on your history, age, stage of disease and examination findings. Acupuncture points for treatment of diabetes can differ from individual to individual. Your acupuncturist may recommend use of herbs that have a hypoglycemic effect along with acupuncture. Some of the herbs that are used include Baihu Jia Renshen Tang, Ginseng, Bawei Dihuang Wan, Yu Quan Wan, Liuwei Dihuang Wan, and Fangfeng Tongsheng San.


Acupuncture has been shown to be more effective;

  • In people who have had diabetes for only a few years,

  • People with mild diabetes and

  • Younger diabetic individuals.

In addition to controlling blood sugar levels acupuncture in people with diabetes can help to control cholesterol levels and decrease the risk of medical complications, such as cardiovascular diseases.

Image Source: Getty

Read more articles on Acupuncture.


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