How Acupuncture Can Help Improve Your Circulation (& Warm You Up) This Winter

By Deanna Carell /

How Acupuncture Can Help Improve Your Circulation (& Warm You Up) This Winter

As the winter months continue and colder weather becomes an issue, acupuncture, it turns out, can help make your season a little warmer. Why?  It’s due to the ancient principles of traditional acupuncture, with researcher concluding that there is significant elevation in the whole body’s blood flow after treatment, allowing blood to reach your extremities that are always cold.

But is this too good to be true? According to Health CMI, studies have been done that prove this is the case, especially when the acupuncture point “Stomach 36” (ST-36) is needled. Using multi-channel photoplethysmography to map the blood flow in the body, they recorded that there were “significant elevations in the whole-body peripheral blood flow and parasympathetic activities” after acupuncture.

These findings only reinforce the ancient principles of acupuncture, while also showing huge differences in the body’s ability to pump blood to both the upper and lower limbs both during and after acupuncture was completed.

acupuncture needles

But there is nothing new with these conclusions: in 1996, the World Health Organization denoted that there are over 60 conditions that acupuncture can be helpful with, ranging from pain, psychiatric concerns, dermatological conditions, respiratory disorders and gynecological diseases. The scope for what acupuncture can help cure or aid in is not yet complete, so it’s not surprising on the modalities ability to help circulate blood and warm your outer extremities. 

Around the world, acupuncture is used to help treat many more conditions including stroke, dementia, epilepsy, Parkinson’s disease, and more.  Should we be surprised that it can help blood circulation as well? 

A Powerful Point on Your Leg – ST 36

The acupuncture point that is responsible for so much of the positive feedback on the increase in circulation is “Stomach 36” (ST 36), located on your lower leg, slightly below your knee.  The point is also commonly referred to as “leg 3 mile”: the story goes that in ancient China, when soldiers needed a push, point ST 36 was activated so that the troops could walk “3 more miles”. 

acupressure st-36

The functions of this point have been studied immensely and it is one of the most important points to help regulate the immune system. But because of its location on the leg, the benefits of activating this point help promote healthy blood flow to the extremities as well.  In addition to ST 36, other points that compliment it could be used as a prescription for increasing blood flow throughout the body, many of which would be points an Acupuncturist would activate during treatment.  

Another important modality used in the treatment of circulation are infrared heat lamps which are an added lamp which warms the tissues and also works to increase blood flow to the areas the lamp is used.

Let Acupuncture Warm You Up, Boost Immunity & Increase Circulation

The benefits of acupuncture are many, and with the cold days of winter, there’s no better time to give it a try or reconnect with your acupuncturist.  Want to learn more, reach out or learn more about getting started here

Deanna Carell is a licensed acupuncturist and owner of Deanna Carell Acupuncture located in Nutley, NJ. She is also the co-owner of Microessence, LLC a company specializing in microneedling courses, devices and natural skin care. Deanna most recently received her Doctorate in Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine (DAOM) from the Pacific College of Health and Science in San Diego and she received a Master’s degree from the Eastern School of Acupuncture and Traditional Medicine where she studied TCM and Kiiko style Japanese acupuncture.

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