…is one of my least favorite questions to get.
Years of experience have taught me that that exact question in those exact words means getting trapped in a script that I don’t know how to get out of.
“Do you work with nutrition?” or ” Do you treat thyroid problems?” I have no problem with. I can answer yes easily. But so far, everyone who has asked if I do ‘acupuncture for weight loss’ has meant “can you give me the magic easy fix advertisers have promised me is out there?”
For a while I said no, once I learned that I can’t give them what they are looking for. If I ever write a self-help book it will be called How To Loose 30 Pounds Over 3-4 Years, By Working Really Damn Hard And Changing Your Entire Lifestyle.
Not a quick fix, but it has the often overlooked benefit of working.
“No,” isn’t a great answer though, because it leaves other people with the impression that there are miracle workers out there, I’m just not one of them. So nowadays I go for the long-winded “While acupuncture can be a great support for people trying to change their relationship with food and overall health, it is not a magic cure or replacement for…” that puts even me to sleep. But it tends to scare off the unqualified patients and maybe give them something to think about.
They might follow up with the next question though, which is, “But I heard from someone that there is a point in the ear that you just stick a needle in and it, like, turns off your appetite.” And then I want to stab Dr. Paul Nogier in the face. (Sorry, Doc.)
And then I explain that yes, there is such a point. And that as long as the needle is in, you will feel hunger less strongly. Until the needle comes out, or you leave it in too long and the point becomes desensitized, and then you are right back where you started. Only hungrier. This is not a way to get healthier, or stronger, or better.
And in any case, feelings, drives and cravings are your body’s way of communicating with you. Letting you know when something is wrong, or needs attention. When you have an alarm going off, turning the alarm down is usually not a good way to deal with the problem.
So how do you deal with excessive hunger or cravings for sweets? By finding out what your body is actually telling you it needs, or needs taken care of, and treating the problem. And there, I can actually help.
Check back next week (or subscribe here) for more musings about cravings and nutrition.
Hi! I’m Havva Mahler, a practitioner of Chinese medicine: acupuncture, Chinese herbs, tuina, reflexology, sotai and massage and a lifestyle, motivation and nutritional consultant. You can normally find me at my clinic in Be’er Sheva or Sderot, or reading something about health and/or motivation. You can find out more about me here. Get in touch with me here. And sign up to get the next blog post delivered straight to your inbox here.