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Using Houston Acupuncture For Metabolic and Thyroid Health
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Acupuncture Can Relieve Many of the Symptoms Associated with Metabolic and Thyroid Disorders

Traditional Chinese medicine, including acupuncture, has been used to treat thyroid conditions for centuries. While the thyroid itself is only partially understood by medical researchers, the use of acupuncture is approved or even recommended by many of those researchers.

When acupuncture is recommended, it’s usually as an adjunct therapy that complements western practices like drug therapy and surgery. When deployed in this fashion, acupuncture and other eastern medical concepts can provide greater relief than either western or eastern modalities alone.

How Can Acupuncture Better Support Metabolic and Thyroid Health?

Among practitioners of eastern medicine, acupuncture and herbal therapies are frontline options in mitigating symptoms arising from thyroid conditions. Exactly how acupuncture can help depends on what’s being treated, but some of the most common thyroid issues that acupuncture is used with include:

Hypothyroidism, including Hashimoto’s Disease

Hypothyroidism is caused when the thyroid’s hormone production drops below normal levels. Some forms of hypothyroidism include Hashimoto’s disease and chronic lymphocytic thyroiditis. The progression of hypothyroidism can be subtle, setting in over many years. Once it’s noticeable, symptoms typically include fatigue, weakness, muscle and joint pain, depression, issues with concentration, and many other complications.

Multiple studies have shown promise in acupuncture’s ability to resolve some of those symptoms and improve quality of life. Acupuncture is a proven adjunct for pain management and can improve blood flow, reducing muscle stiffness and pain. Also, the British Acupuncture Council also notes that acupuncture can help stimulate the thyroid into producing additional hormones providing better balance.

Hyperthyroidism, including Cushing’s disease

On the other end is hyperthyroidism, which is the result of excessive thyroid hormone levels. The most common form of hyperthyroidism is Cushing’s disease, which is often the result of a pituitary adenoma (a noncancerous tumor) developing inside the pituitary tissue and producing adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH). In the presence of ACTH, the pituitary gland secretes the stress hormone cortisol, which itself can produce a variety of symptoms if left unchecked.

Like with hypothyroidism, acupuncture can offset many of the symptoms associated with hyperthyroidism, including anxiety, depression, headaches, muscle stiffness and muscle pain. Some eastern practitioners also recommend herbal therapies to support thyroid balance.


In patients suffering from hyperparathyroidism, the parathyroid glands produce too much parathyroid hormone (PTH). Although the parathyroid glands are tiny - only the size of a rice grain - they are responsible for regulating the body’s uptake of calcium and phosphorus. As calcium and phosphorus are essential building blocks of bone tissue, issues with the parathyroid glands can lead to osteoporosis and other bone disorders.

Symptoms of hyperparathyroidism include joint and abdominal pain, muscle weakness, anxiety, fatigue, nausea and vomiting, and eventually bone loss. As an adjunct, acupuncture can help alleviate many of these symptoms and support better overall wellness.

Adrenal fatigue or insufficiency

Chronic stress or illness can result in adrenal insufficiency, which is what happens when the adrenal glands don’t produce enough hormone to properly regulate some of the body’s functions. In patients with adrenal insufficiency, symptoms such as fatigue, body aches and low blood pressure are common, along with weight loss in some patients.

As acupuncture can help restore the body’s hormonal balance, it’s also used to address adrenal insufficiency. In this instance, acupuncture and herbal therapies can help stimulate the adrenal glands to produce additional hormones. Acupuncture is also effective at pain management, which can offset the muscle pains associated with adrenal insufficiencies.


Thyroid hormone imbalances are a noted cause of fatigue, whether the cause is too much or too little hormone. In patients with too little thyroid hormone (hypothyroidism), metabolism may run too slow and leave the patient with chronic fatigue. In patients with too much thyroid hormone (hyperthyroidism), some functions of the metabolism - including heart rate - may go into overdrive and exhaust the patient in this way.

In both instances, acupuncture can help restore thyroid hormone balance and optimal metabolic function. And in people where the thyroid isn’t implicated, acupuncture’s ability to stimulate the nervous system and aid in better rest/recovery can help improve fatigue symptoms.

How Does Acupuncture Fit with Western Treatment Modalities?

Western and eastern doctors approach their patients from two different angles, but the mission is the same: Help their patients achieve their best possible outcome. Both disciplines have helped millions of people achieve a higher quality of life, even if they don’t overlap in many areas.

Our practice believes a mix of east and west is the best approach for patients. Here’s how each medical philosophy contributes to that approach:

What western medicine is good at

Western medicine’s strength is its diagnostic precision, as western doctors are excellent at using the patient’s symptoms and medical history to develop effective treatments. Some of those treatment methods, including drug therapies and surgery, have helped many and provided better quality of life to many more.

What eastern medicine is good at

Eastern medicine takes a holistic approach to patient treatment, preferring to consider the body as interconnected systems rather than compartmentalized organs. This holistic approach means eastern medical practitioners are more interested in preserving the body’s balance rather than honing in on a single part of the body for treatment. As such, practitioners strive for disease prevention rather than treating symptoms as they emerge, which makes eastern medical modalities effective as adjuncts and supports.

As you can see, eastern and western medical philosophies almost perfectly complement each other, which is why an increasing number of practices are using both for their patients.

Consider Houston Acupuncture for Your Metabolic and Thyroid Health

Living with a chronic thyroid disorder is difficult and treating them can be a challenge, too. If you’re dealing with a thyroid condition and aren’t attaining enough relief from medications alone, eastern medicine may help. It’s important, though, to pick a practitioner that’s licensed and experienced in the field.

Our practice has both, as we’re an experienced and licensed Houston acupuncture provider. That means we use sanitized, approved acupuncture for treatment only, and know what acupuncture points to use for thyroid conditions. This ensures our patients get the best from their acupuncture sessions.