U.S. newspapers continuously report the increase in the number of
individuals among all age groups who suffer from diabetes. One research
group suggests that in the not-too-distant future, half of the Hispanic
population may have diabetes. It seems that diabetes becomes more
prevalent as society becomes more affluent, as there is more food
Diabetes is caused primarily by dysfunction of
the pancreas. How can acupuncture help diabetic patients? Scientific
studies and clinical tests in international research centers in the past
10 years* have shown that acupuncture can help diabetic patients in the
- lower blood glucose content;
- lower the release of pancreatic glucagons;
symptoms of polyphagia (the urge to eat too much), polydipsia
(excessive thirst) and polyuria (excessive passage of urine);
- prevent slowing of motor nerve conduction;
- improve microcirculation and myocardial contractility;
- enhance blood outflow and regulate vascular peripheral resistance;
- exert antiatherogenic, antioxidant and immunomodulating effects;
- obliterate antheroscelerosis of the legs;
- induce secretion of endogenous beta-endorphin;
- elevate a lowered pain threshold; and
- increase cell proliferation and neuropeptide Y levels.
Patient before acupuncture treatment.
As discussed in my first article in the June issue, the effects of
acupuncture are immediate after each session. Pictured below are
infrared images (before and after acupuncture treatment) of a diabetic
patient who had laser surgery on the eyes (without much success). The
effect of acupuncture is dramatically illustrated by the change in the
patient's color pattern. The color code is as follows: White is the
highest temperature, followed by red; orange; yellow; green; blue; and
The patient was treated twice. The second treatment occurred about one week after the first.
Patient and first acupuncture treatment.
The maximum temperatures around the eyes, forehead and the mouth were
reduced by 1.32 C, 1.26 C and 1.0 C after the first treatment,
respectively. Maximum temperatures around the eyes, forehead and the
mouth were reduced by 0.65 C, 0.26 C and 0.46 C after the second
treatment. The reduction in maximum temperatures was less for the second
treatment than for the first treatment.
Before the first
treatment, the differences between maximum and minimum temperature
around the eyes, mouth and forehead were 2.65 C, -0.07 C and 1.49 C.
Before the second treatment, the differences between maximum and minimum
temperatures were 1.81 C, 0.06 C and 0.27 C.
improvement on the eyes and the forehead based on the reductions of
their difference in maximum and minimum temperature. We attributed the
improvement of 0.64 C around the eyes and 1.22 C around the forehead to
the first treatment with acupuncture and massage. There was hardly any
change to the difference of maximum and minimum temperature around the
The high temperature around the forehead probably
was due to high blood pressure. Since the improvement was rapid, one
expects the high blood pressure can be controlled much easier.
high temperature around the eyes was due to damage from diabetes and
the surgical operations on the eyes. Nevertheless, there was an
improvement of 0.64 C. This is a very good indication that the patient
responded positively to acupuncture treatment.
serious diabetic patient who had acupuncture continuously twice a week
for a year, there was continuous improvement of eyesight and bodily