Acupuncture Reduces Menopause Symptoms

Acupuncture therapy - Dr. Betty Keller Acupuncture NJ

Menopause can cause a variety of symptoms due to hormonal changes. Symptoms can include, hot flashes, night sweats, insomnia, anxiety, changes in mood, and weight gain.
There are a number of non-hormonal options for treating Menopausal symptoms that are available to women.
Lifestyle changes, including diet, exercise and stress reduction can help reduce these symptoms.
In addition studies have also shown that acupuncture can help reduce Menopausal symptoms.
Acupuncture is a method of encouraging the body to promote natural healing and to balance and improve function. This is done by inserting very thin needling at precise acupuncture points. Acupuncture promotes health and can treat a wide range of conditions. It can be very effective in reducing hot flashes, night sweats, insomnia, anxiety, and help balance mood and in combination with lifestyle changes it can help with weight loss.
Acupuncture helps restore balance, by stimulating the body’s natural healing process and promoting physical and mental well being.
The number of treatments needed differs from person to person. For menopause symptoms the average number of treatments we recommend is 10. These sessions usually last about 45 minutes. Acupuncture treatments can be given alone or in combinations with supplements and or Bio identical Hormones to manage menopausal symptoms.
Dr. Keller is an expert in treating menopausal symptoms with Acupuncture, supplements and Bioidentical Hormones. Working with her patients to find what works best for them.

To see if Medical Acupuncture can help you, call us at 201-485-7930
Optimal Wellness is located at
172 Franklin Ave Suite 4A Ridgewood New Jersey

For more information about The Benefits of Medical Acupuncture go to our website at

Bioidentical Hormone Therapy

Medical Acupuncture

 

Medical Acupuncture

Acupuncture: What is it?

Acupuncture is a method of encouraging the body to promote natural healing and to improve functioning. This is done by inserting very thin needles, or a cool laser, at very precise acupuncture points. It is used to relieve pain, treat a wide range of illnesses, and promote health.

What is Medical Acupuncture? Is it Different from Ordinary Acupuncture?

Acupuncture is a very old medical art, and there are many approaches to learning and practicing it. Medical acupuncture is the term used to describe acupuncture performed by a doctor trained and licensed in Western medicine that has also had through training in acupuncture as a specialty practice. Such a doctor can use one or the other approach, or a combination of both as the need arises, to treat an illness.

What is the Scope of Medical Acupuncture?

Medical acupuncture is a system, which can influence three areas of health care:

Promotion of health and well-being
Prevention of illness
Treatment of various medical conditions
While acupuncture is often associated with pain control, in the hands of a well-trained practitioner it has much broader applications. Acupuncture can be effective as the only treatment used, or as the support or adjunct to other medical treatment forms in many medical and surgical disorders.

The World Health Organization recognizes the use of acupuncture in the treatment of a wide range of medical problems, including:

Digestive disorders: gastritis and hyperacidity, spastic colon, constipation, diarrhea.
Respiratory disorders: sinusitis, sore throat, bronchitis, asthma, and recurrent chest infections.
Neurological and muscular disorders: headaches, facial tics, neck pain, rib neuritis, frozen shoulder, tennis elbow, various forms of tendonitis, low back pain, sciatica, osteoarthritis.
Urinary, menstrual, and reproductive problems.
Acupuncture is particular useful in resolving physical problems related to tension and stress and emotional conditions.

How does Acupuncture work?

The classical Chinese explanation is that channels of energy run in regular patterns through the body and over its surface. These energy channels, called meridians, are like rivers flowing through the body to irrigate and nourish the tissues. An obstruction in the movement of these energy rivers is like a dam that backs up the flow in one part of the body and restricts it in others.
The meridians can be influenced by needling the acupuncture points; the acupuncture needs unblock the obstructions at the dams, and reestablish the regular flow through the meridians. Acupuncture treatments can therefore help the body’s internal organs to correct imbalances in their digestion, absorptions and energy production activities, and in the circulation of their energy through the meridians.

The modern scientific explanation is that needling the acupuncture points stimulates the nervous system to release chemicals in the muscles, spinal cord, and brain. These chemicals will either change the experience of pain, or they will trigger the release of other chemicals and hormones, which influence the bodies own internal regulating system.

The improved energy and biochemical balance produced by acupuncture results in stimulating the body?s natural healing abilities, and in promoting physical and emotional well-being.

How Many Treatments Will I Need?

The number of treatments needed differs from person to person. For complex or long-standing conditions, one or two treatments per week for several months may be recommended. For acute problems, usually fewer visits are required, and for health maintenance, four sessions a year may be all that is necessary.

Are There Any Side Effects to the Treatment?

Usually not. As energy is redirected in the body, internal chemicals and hormones are stimulated and healing begins to take place. Occasionally, the original symptoms worsen for a few days, or other general changes in appetite, sleep, bowel or urination patterns, or emotional state may be triggered. These should not cause concern, as they are simply indications that the acupuncture is starting to work.

It is quite common with the first one or two treatments to have a sensation of deep relaxation or even mild disorientation immediately following the treatment. These pass within a short time, and never require anything more than a bit of rest of rest to overcome.

What Are the Needles Like? Do they Hurt?

Acupuncture needles are very thin and solid and are made from stainless steel. The point is smooth (not how with cutting edges like a hypodermic needle) and insertion through the skin is not as painful as injections or blood sampling. The risk of bruising and skin irritation is less than when using a hollow needle.

Because your doctor uses disposable needles, there is no risk of infection from the treatments.

Does Acupuncture Really Work?

Yes. In the past 2,000 years, more people have been successfully treated with acupuncture than with all other health modalities combined. Today, acupuncture is practiced in Asia, the new disbanded Soviet Union, and in Europe. It is now being used more and more in America by patients and physicians.

Acupuncture treatments can be given at the same time as other techniques are being used, such as conventional Western medicine, osteopathic or chiropractic adjustments, and homeopathic or naturopathic prescriptions. It is important that your physician-acupuncturists know everything that you are doing, so he or she can help you get the most benefits from all your treatments

Acupuncture- Dr. Keller is trained in palpatory acupuncture, which combines classical Chinese medical principles with modern pathophysiology in a way that facilitates the understanding and brings out the best in both.

To see if Medical Acupuncture can help you, call us at Optimal Wellness located in Ridgewood New Jersey 201 485 7930

For more information about The Benefits of Medical Acupuncture go to our website at

Optimalwellnessctr.comAcupuncture therapy - Dr. Betty Keller Acupuncture NJ

 

Cosmetic Acupuncture

Acupuncture therapy - Dr. Betty Keller Acupuncture NJWhat is cosmetic

acupuncture?

Cosmetic acupuncture can help to firm

and tone your skin, bringing about a

younger appearance and a greater

sense of well-being.

When applied to skin that is affected

by aging, cosmetic acupuncture helps

minimize wrinkles, lines and can help

to firm loose skin. With treatments, clients often enjoy additional benefits of

acupuncture, such as increased energy, better skin tone and a healthy glow

that comes from a deeper feeling of wellness.

Where is cosmetic acupuncture applied?

Cosmetic acupuncture is used on certain areas of the face.  Specifically,

it’s used to lift and firm up skin that sags around the chin and eyes,

reducing wrinkles and fine lines. It improves the complexion and

gives the entire face a fresher-looking appearance.

 How does cosmetic acupuncture help

you look younger?

The treatment uses acupuncture needles.  These are sterile, stainless

steel needles that are hair-thin. A medical acupuncturist inserts them

painlessly into the skin at specific points.  The body responds to the

insertion point as a micro-trauma, bringing better circulation, and

producing collagen and elastin in the immediate area.  This healing

response results in skin that becomes firmer, with a healthier glow,

and reduced signs of wrinkles.

Comparison to other treatments

Cosmetic acupuncture is much gentler than Botox or surgery.  It

requires no incisions or skin removal, acid peels or injections.

Acupuncture brings about subtle improvement. You will not get

the same results as a facelift, Botox or fillers. The results will also

not change your appearance the way that Botox, surgical facelifts

or under-skin fillers do.  You get a more youthful look naturally,

without the side effects or recovery time needed from these other

treatments.

Cosmetic acupuncture relies on the body’s healing process.  It does

not rely on drugs, chemicals or implants.  It has no side effects, and

avoids the need to spend time healing from more traumatic

procedures.

How many treatments are needed?

To get the desired results, it’s recommended to plan a series of

10 treatments.  Plan two treatments per week for 5 weeks.

Afterward, you can schedule just one treatment per month

as recommended to maintain your results. Results can last

from 3 to 5 years depending on your age and your schedule

of treatments.

Schedule your treatment at the

Optimal Wellness Center

Dr. Keller is trained in Mei Zen cosmetic acupuncture and

practices at the Optimal Wellness Center, in Ridgewood,

New Jersey. You can start look younger using your body’s

own natural healing response, and feel better too.

Schedule a consultation to see if cosmetic acupuncture is

right for you and to discuss your expectations. Make your

appointment by calling 201-485-7930 or contact Us.

 

Acupuncture and Stress Relief Part 2:

Acupuncture and Stress Relief Part 2: How acupuncture eases pain, improves mood, sleep, and body chemistry
by Dr. Betty Keller
We cannot eliminate stress from our live but we can learn to manage. That’s part of what we learned in Acupuncture and Stress Releif Part 1: How the Body Responds to Stress

Acupuncture is very effective in reducing stress and stress related conditions.

It is well documented that there is a strong connection between the mind and body. Clearly mental well-being is associated with physical well being. Acupuncture helps restore the imbalances of neurotransmitters and hormones brought on by chronic stress and thus help reduce stress and the harmful effects of chronic stress.

Acupuncture: How It Works
The modern scientific explanation is that needling stimulates the nervous system to release chemicals in the brain, spinal cord and muscles. These chemicals alter the experience of pain and also trigger the release of other chemicals, neurotransmitters, and hormones that influence the bodies own internal regulating system.

Acupuncture Decreases Cortisol and Other Stress-Related Hormones

Acupuncture is very effective in reducing stress and stress related conditions. It does this by modulating neurotransmitters and reducing stress hormones. Acupuncture needles stimulate the secretion of endorphins the body’s natural painkillers, as well as decrease cortisol – one of the major stress hormones.

In addition acupuncture increases serotonin, dopamine, and melatonin. These neurotransmitters help reduce pain, elevate mood, relax the body, improve sleep and help with an increased feeling of over all well being. People feel extremely relaxed during and after acupuncture treatments. Post acupuncture treatments, patients feel completely relaxed and often report improved sleep.

Multiple acupuncture treatments appear to up regulate the secretion of neurotransmitter and hormones, which explains the long-term effects of acupuncture. Acupuncture helps restore the imbalances of neurotransmitters and hormones brought on by chronic stress, and is a safe and effective way to treat stress and stress induced disorders.

What is Medical Acupuncture, and Who Can Provide It?

Acupuncture can be part of a doctor’s medical practice. It is part of my practice at the Optimal Wellness Center, in Franklin Lakes, New Jersey. Not all acupuncturists are doctors. A licensed acupuncturist can provide services without being a health practitioner.

As a professional medical doctor, I use acupuncture because the most effective treatment for some people uses contemporary Western medicine combined with complimentary techniques, including acupuncture. Sometimes the best treatment for difficult conditions, such as fibromyalgia, chronic pain, or weight loss, uses both acupuncture treatments and modern medical treatment. This is what integrative medicine is all about.

If you find that traditional medicine alone has not helped improve health for you, you may want to speak with a doctor who takes in integrative approach.

Acupuncture Helps Reduce Stress

Acupuncture and Stress Relief Part 1: How Your Body Responds to Stress
by Dr. Betty Keller
Stress is a part of our daily lives. In northern New Jersey, where I have my medical practice, we are so busy, we may not even be aware of how we respond to stress every day.

Too much stress can adversely affect your health. It is estimated that between 75 and 90% of primary care visits are in some way attributed to stress.

We all know that having a stress free life is impossible. In fact a strong reaction to stress also known as the fight or flight response is a physiologic response that is designed to increase survival.

Understanding your stress is the first step to having more power over it.
When you are faced with a threat whether real or perceived, your autonomic nervous system sets off a series of chemical reactions involving the hypothalamus, pituitary and adrenal glands. Also known as the HPAaxis. This results in the release of epinephrine (adrenaline) and glucocorticoids (cortisol) from the adrenal glands. This triggers physiological changes that help you survive immediate danger.

Adrenaline increases your heart rate, dilates your pupils, increases alertness and decreases blood flow to the skin, and your digestive system. Blood is redirected to your muscles for increased strength. Cortisol increases glucose, which is the main form of energy used by both your brain and body. Cortisol increases your blood sugar by breaking down muscle (protein) and increasing fatty acids to supply energy to the muscles. This increased energy supply gives the body the necessary power to respond to a physically and emotionally demanding situation. It allows you to fight harder or run faster, thus increasing your odds of surviving.

What is cortisol’s role is causing chronic disease? When you are in a stressful situation, large amounts of the hormone cortisol are released into the bloodstream. Over time, prolonged elevations of cortisol can have negative health consequences.

Here is what can happen when stress becomes chronic. Initially you have the alarm phase – the immediate reaction to a stress. Heart rate increases, breathing becomes rapid, digestive enzyme production decreases, and blood sugar levels increase.

The alarm phase is usually short, and self limited, hormone levels go back to normal until activated by another threat. No long-term negative health consequences occur. Unfortunately in today’s world many people have chronically elevated levels of these hormones due to stress. Our lifestyles and the world around us are full of potential stressful situations. You may feel continuing stress related to the economy, fear of terrorists, relationships, natural disasters, traffic, your job, etc.

We have become a nation of chronically stressed individuals
Whether perceived or real, stressful situations arise multiple times throughout the day. The stress response was helpful to our ancestors that had to fight or run from a wild bear. Unfortunately in our daily lives, we all have perceived threats through out the day. This stress has contributed to many chronic health problems.

If the stress response continues, the body starts slowing down, as it is unable to continue producing high levels of stress hormones. Eventually, many body functions can become exhausted. Exhaustion due to prolonged stress weakens the heart, blood vessels, adrenal glands, and immune system – partially due to the chronic elevations of cortisol.

Recent research also shows that chronically high levels of cortisol can result in weight gain and changes in body composition too. Cortisol promotes increases in blood sugar, which is converted from protein stores (muscle). This results in the loss of muscle (lean body mass) and in increase in body fat, especially around the mid-section.

One study showed an increased tendency in snacking during times of high cortisol levels in the blood. People who have trouble coping with stress often turn to food for comfort. In addition cortisol causes physiologic changes that increase food intake. Cortisol affects our hunger hormones leptin and ghrelin. Cortisol decreases leptin the hormone responsible for telling us we are full. It also increases ghrelin the hormone that tells us we are hungry. Both these hormonal changes cause one to increase their food intake.

In addition cortisol also increases insulin and neuropeptide Y, again both cause you to consume more food, particularly high fat or sugar comfort food. Therefore, chronic stress can lead to weight gain. Weight gain around the middle, known as “central adiposity,” is associated with the metabolic imbalances of “metabolic syndrome”, insulin resistance, and increased risk of heart disease.

So clearly chronic stress has a negative impact on our health causing or exacerbating heart disease, diabetes, hypertension, anxiety depression, osteoporosis, impaired immunity, dementia, and possibly cancer.

The good news is, your can decide to take care of yourself. You can decide to better manage your stress. A highly effective, but often overlooked therapy is acupuncture. Very briefly, acupuncture enables the body to boost the immune response, and lessen the bad effects of stress on many fronts. More about how acupuncture reduces stress and helps restore healthier conditions in the body is the topic of the next article

Medical Acupuncture

Acupuncture
Acupuncture: What is it?

Acupuncture is a method of encouraging the body to promote natural healing and to improve functioning. This is done by inserting very thin needles, or a cool laser, at very precise acupuncture points. It is used to relieve pain, treat a wide range of illnesses, and promote health.

What is Medical Acupuncture? Is it Different from Ordinary Acupuncture?

Acupuncture is a very old medical art, and there are many approaches to learning and practicing it. Medical acupuncture is the term used to describe acupuncture performed by a doctor trained and licensed in Western medicine that has also had through training in acupuncture as a specialty practice. Such a doctor can use one or the other approach, or a combination of both as the need arises, to treat an illness.

What is the Scope of Medical Acupuncture?

Medical acupuncture is a system, which can influence three areas of health care:

Promotion of health and well-being
Prevention of illness
Treatment of various medical conditions
While acupuncture is often associated with pain control, in the hands of a well-trained practitioner it has much broader applications. Acupuncture can be effective as the only treatment used, or as the support or adjunct to other medical treatment forms in many medical and surgical disorders.

The World Health Organization recognizes the use of acupuncture in the treatment of a wide range of medical problems, including:

Digestive disorders: gastritis and hyperacidity, spastic colon, constipation, diarrhea.
Respiratory disorders: sinusitis, sore throat, bronchitis, asthma, and recurrent chest infections.
Neurological and muscular disorders: headaches, facial tics, neck pain, rib neuritis, frozen shoulder, tennis elbow, various forms of tendonitis, low back pain, sciatica, osteoarthritis.
Urinary, menstrual, and reproductive problems.
Acupuncture is particular useful in resolving physical problems related to tension and stress and emotional conditions.

How does Acupuncture work?

The classical Chinese explanation is that channels of energy run in regular patterns through the body and over its surface. These energy channels, called meridians, are like rivers flowing through the body to irrigate and nourish the tissues. An obstruction in the movement of these energy rivers is like a dam that backs up the flow in one part of the body and restricts it in others.
The meridians can be influenced by needling the acupuncture points; the acupuncture needs unblock the obstructions at the dams, and reestablish the regular flow through the meridians. Acupuncture treatments can therefore help the body’s internal organs to correct imbalances in their digestion, absorptions and energy production activities, and in the circulation of their energy through the meridians.

The modern scientific explanation is that needling the acupuncture points stimulates the nervous system to release chemicals in the muscles, spinal cord, and brain. These chemicals will either change the experience of pain, or they will trigger the release of other chemicals and hormones, which influence the bodies own internal regulating system.

The improved energy and biochemical balance produced by acupuncture results in stimulating the body?s natural healing abilities, and in promoting physical and emotional well-being.

How Many Treatments Will I Need?

The number of treatments needed differs from person to person. For complex or long-standing conditions, one or two treatments per week for several months may be recommended. For acute problems, usually fewer visits are required, and for health maintenance, four sessions a year may be all that is necessary.

Are There Any Side Effects to the Treatment?

Usually not. As energy is redirected in the body, internal chemicals and hormones are stimulated and healing begins to take place. Occasionally, the original symptoms worsen for a few days, or other general changes in appetite, sleep, bowel or urination patterns, or emotional state may be triggered. These should not cause concern, as they are simply indications that the acupuncture is starting to work.

It is quite common with the first one or two treatments to have a sensation of deep relaxation or even mild disorientation immediately following the treatment. These pass within a short time, and never require anything more than a bit of rest of rest to overcome.

What Are the Needles Like? Do they Hurt?

Acupuncture needles are very thin and solid and are made from stainless steel. The point is smooth (not how with cutting edges like a hypodermic needle) and insertion through the skin is not as painful as injections or blood sampling. The risk of bruising and skin irritation is less than when using a hollow needle.

Because your doctor uses disposable needles, there is no risk of infection from the treatments.

Does Acupuncture Really Work?

Yes. In the past 2,000 years, more people have been successfully treated with acupuncture than with all other health modalities combined. Today, acupuncture is practiced in Asia, the new disbanded Soviet Union, and in Europe. It is now being used more and more in America by patients and physicians.

Acupuncture treatments can be given at the same time as other techniques are being used, such as conventional Western medicine, osteopathic or chiropractic adjustments, and homeopathic or naturopathic prescriptions. It is important that your physician-acupuncturists know everything that you are doing, so he or she can help you get the most benefits from all your treatments

Acupuncture- Dr. Keller is trained in palpatory acupuncture, which combines classical Chinese medical principles with modern pathophysiology in a way that facilitates the understanding and brings out the best in both.

Acupuncture Reduces Symptoms Of Fibromyalgia

Fibromyalgia Treatment: Acupuncture is Effective in Reducing Symptoms

Fibromyalgia is a syndrome that causes chronic widespread musculoskeletal pain. It is often associated with one or more other symptoms such as fatigue, stiffness, and insomnia. The pain of Fibromyalgia syndrome (also known as FMS) typically includes particular areas of increased sensitivity called tender points.

Fibromyalgia affects up to 2% of the population. The best treatment approach is integrative combining Western medicine, therapeutic lifestyle changes and complementary therapies. Complementary therapy, like acupuncture is effective in reducing symptoms of fibromyalgia. An important study published in the Mayo Clinic Proceedings showed that acupuncture reduced symptoms in patients with fibromyalgia including reduction in pain, fatigue, and anxiety. In addition, it was found to be as effective as some medications. Using the FIO score (a standard measure of fibromyalgia activity), acupuncture reduced the score by 7 points. This clinical benefit is comparable to pharmacological interventions such as tricyclic antidepressants (a decrease of 7 points) and the pain medication Tramadol (a decrease of 6 points)

According to the lead author, Dr. David P. Martin, M.D., PhD, “We found that acupuncture significantly improved symptoms of fibromyalgia. Symptomatic improvement was not restricted to pain relief and was most significant for fatigue and anxiety.”

It is believed that acupuncture may actually block pain impulses from reaching the brain. Acupuncture increases production of endorphins, the body’s natural painkillers. The gentle insertion of acupuncture needles at specific sites causes a measurable release of endorphins into the blood stream. These natural pain killers help decrease pain. Repeated treatments are felt to up-regulate endorphins causing increased production of endorphins and thus a sustained reduction in pain.

Acupuncture is felt to increase a patient’s pain threshold, which is normally low in patients with fibromyalgia. It also increases the production of neurotransmitters, which carry impulses between nerve cells. Acupuncture increases serotonin, which is also typically low in fibromyalgia patients. Seratonin is the neurotransmitter responsible for “feeling happy”. It controls mood by helping with sleep, calming anxiety and reducing depression.

Neurotransmitters stimulate or inhibit nerve impulses in the brain that relay sensations such as pain. Elevated levels of neurotransmitters can increase a patient’s tolerance to pain.

Benefits of Acupuncture For Fibromyalgia Patients
Less pain
Better sleep
More energy
Relaxation / Stress Reduction
Anxiety reduction
Reduction of depression
Possible boost to the immune system
Better overall health
Acupuncture is a safe and effective way of reducing symptoms in patients with fibromyalgia.

Fibromyalgia Treatment with Acupuncture in Bergen County, NJ
Dr. Betty Keller specializes in acupuncture, combined with Western medicine in treating fibromyalgia. Her medical practice is in Franklin Lakes, New Jersey, serving surrounding areas and Bergen County.

To request an appointment to visit her office at 777 Franklin Ave | Franklin Lakes, NJ 07417, please contact us: 201-485-7930.

Can Acupuncture Help You Lose Weight?

Acupuncture and Weight Loss Works by Reducing Stress and Promoting a Healthy Lifestyle

Summary:  While acupuncture isn’t a cure-all, it can help make your weight loss plan work for you.  Acupuncture — an ancient medical treatment using small needles at precise points — stimulates the nervous system.  One result is pain reduction, by triggering the body’s own hormones that stimulate a sense of well-being.  You feel more energetic and mobile, which makes it easier for you to exercise and enjoy being more physically active.  Following a healthy eating plan is an important part of successful weight loss.  Acupuncture has been shown to reduce cravings and stress levels that can make it harder for you to follow healthy lifestyle changes.  Many people looking to lose weight and keep it off find that acupuncture is just what they need to over come  cravings, boost  energy, decrease  appetite, and reduce  stress.  It may be the little extra help you need to succeed.

What is acupuncture?

Acupuncture is a medical treatment to encourage the body to promote natural healing and to improve functioning. This is done by inserting small needles into precise acupuncture points.

The classical Chinese explanation is that channels of energy run in patterns through the body.  These channels are called meridians. Acupuncture helps restore the natural flow when there is an obstruction in these energy channels.

The modern scientific explanation is that needling the acupuncture points stimulates the nervous system to release chemicals in muscles, the spinal cord, and the brain.  These chemicals can decrease or eliminate pain; they can also trigger the release of other chemicals and hormones, which influence the body’s own internal healing system.

The improved energy and biochemical balance produced by acupuncture results in stimulating the body to heal itself and promote physical and emotional wellbeing.

How can acupuncture help me lose weight?

We all know weight loss is a complex subject, and a program must be multifaceted to be effective. A good program would include, a healthy diet, exercise, stress reduction and behavioral modifications. As an adjunct therapy acupuncture can help. It is not magic, and is not a substitute for adopting a healthy lifestyle.  However it can be effective in making it easier to lose weight and keep it off in those individuals who are willing to make appropriate healthy lifestyle changes.  Studies have shown that people following a healthy diet and exercise plan can lose more weight when acupuncture is included in their weight loss program. If you need ideas to get started on your weight loss program, call or contact us to learn more about acupuncture as part of a whole-person treatment plan.

Healthy lifestyle and weight loss treatments, Franklin Lakes NJDr. Keller’s treatment plan includes  personal follow up consultations to support you. Find out more about how Dr. Keller helps you choose and reach your weight loss goals.

How does acupuncture help with weight loss?

When acupuncture needles are inserted into specific points in the ear or the body the body releases endorphins.  Endorphins are proteins similar to opioids.   When these proteins are released into the body they cause a sense of well being.  They also act as an analgesic, which means they can reduce pain.  These endorphins have a calming and relaxing effect on the body. When a person is calm and relaxed it makes it easier not to overeat and gain weight.

Acupuncture can relieve stress, a major contributor to weight gain.

When needles are placed in specific point in the ear they stimulate the auricular branch of the vagus nerve. This nerve functions to increase the smooth muscle tone of the stomach, which decreases your appetite by causing a sense of fullness. Stimulation of this nerve also causes an increase in serotonin.  Serotonin is a neurotransmitter produced in your brain. When released it gives you a  ‘feeling of happiness’ and helps to keep you calm.  In addition, serotonin also helps to suppress your appetite.  This may be particularly important in a subset of overweight people who have low levels of serotonin.

What happens at a treatment session?

Needles are placed in specific points in the ear and body based on your particular eating type. There are specific points in the ear that correspond to different eating habits. Depending on your particular needs different points will be used. After the area is clean with an alcohol wipe a small disposable needle is inserted into a precise acupuncture point.  After the needles are inserted they will be left in place for about twenty minutes while you relax.  Before leaving press tags are placed in the area that is best suited for your treatment. These small beads are attached to a small piece of tape and placed in the area most appropriate for you. They can be stimulated for 10 seconds gently when needed to suppress appetitive or cravings or induce a feeling of calm.

How many treatments are needed?

The number of treatments depends on your personnel wellness goals.  Dr.Keller will assess you at each visit and determine the appropriate number of treatments for you.

What happens when the treatments are completed?  Will I gain all the weight back?

Congratulations, if your treatments are completed you have reached your wellness goal.  You now have made permanent healthy lifestyle changes and these changes will help you maintain you’re your new healthy weight.  The positive effects of acupuncture will persist.  This may be because not only does acupuncture release endorphins and serotonin and other beneficial chemicals it may also cause the body to continue to release a higher level of these chemicals even after the treatments have stopped.  Once you have reached your goals you and Dr.Keller may decide to have a treatment every four to six months to stay on track with your wellness goal.

Those who follow a healthy diet and exercise plan in combination with acupuncture should see a boost in their weight loss and energy levels.

What are some of the advantages of adding acupuncture to your weight loss program?

  • Both men and women of all fitness levels can benefit from acupuncture.
  • Patients can help reduce their stress while losing weight.
  • Acupuncture helps suppress your appetite.
  • Acupuncture may help reduce fat, increase lean muscle mass, and improve joint mobility.
  • Acupuncture can also be used to relieve pain, a benefit, which will make exercising easier.
  • You may find that in addition to healthy life style changes that acupuncture is just what you need to over come your cravings, boost your energy, decrease your appetite, and reduce your stress.  It may be the little extra help you need to succeed.

As with any weight loss program, acupuncture treatments for weight loss will not work for everyone. You will need to evaluate your health and fitness goals. Contact us to to learn more about weight control therapies and to decide if trying acupuncture for weight loss is right for you.

Healthy lifestyle and weight loss treatments, Franklin Lakes NJDr. Keller’s treatment plan and personal follow up consultations guide you in making a transition to a  healthier lifestyle, where a lighter weight is one natural outcome. Come see more about how Dr. Keller helps you choose and reach your weight loss goals.

Acupuncture and Stress Relief Part 2: How acupuncture eases pain, improves mood, sleep, and body chemistry

We cannot eliminate stress from our live but we can learn to manage. That’s part of what we learned in Acupuncture and Stress Releif Part 1: How the Body Responds to Stress

Acupuncture is very effective in reducing stress and stress related conditions.

It is well documented that there is a strong connection between the mind and body. Clearly mental well-being is associated with physical well being. Acupuncture helps restore the imbalances of neurotransmitters and hormones brought on by chronic stress and thus help reduce stress and the harmful effects of chronic stress.

Acupuncture: How It Works

The modern scientific explanation is that needling stimulates the nervous system to release chemicals in the brain, spinal cord and muscles. These chemicals alter the experience of pain and also trigger the release of other chemicals, neurotransmitters, and hormones that influence the bodies own internal regulating system.

Acupuncture Decreases Cortisol and Other Stress-Related Hormones

Acupuncture is very effective in reducing stress and stress related conditions. It does this by modulating neurotransmitters and reducing stress hormones. Acupuncture needles stimulate the secretion of endorphins the body’s natural painkillers, as well as decrease cortisol – one of the major stress hormones.

In addition acupuncture increases serotonin, dopamine, and melatonin.  These neurotransmitters help reduce pain, elevate mood, relax the body, improve sleep and help with an increased feeling of over all well being. People feel extremely relaxed during and after acupuncture treatments. Post acupuncture treatments, patients feel completely relaxed and often report improved sleep.

Multiple acupuncture treatments appear to up regulate the secretion of neurotransmitter and hormones, which explains the long-term effects of acupuncture.   Acupuncture helps restore the imbalances of neurotransmitters and hormones brought on by chronic stress, and is a safe and effective way to treat stress and stress induced disorders.

What is Medical Acupuncture, and Who Can Provide It?

Acupuncture can be part of a doctor’s medical practice.  It is part of my practice at the Optimal Wellness Center, in Franklin Lakes, New Jersey. Not all acupuncturists are doctors.   A licensed acupuncturist can provide services without being a health practitioner.

As a professional medical doctor, I use acupuncture because the most effective treatment for some people uses contemporary Western medicine  combined with complimentary techniques, including acupuncture. Sometimes the best treatment for difficult conditions, such as fibromyalgia, chronic pain, or weight loss, uses both acupuncture treatments and modern medical treatment. This is what integrative medicine is all about.

If you find that traditional medicine alone has not helped improve health for you, you may want to speak with a doctor who takes in integrative approach.

Acupuncture and Stress Relief Part 1: How Your Body Responds to Stress

Stress is a part of our daily lives.  In northern New Jersey, where I have my medical practice, we are so busy, we may not even be aware of how we respond to stress every day.

Too much stress can adversely affect your health. It is estimated that between 75 and 90% of primary care visits are in some way attributed to stress.

We all know that having a stress free life is impossible. In fact a strong reaction to stress also known as the fight or flight response is a physiologic response that is designed to increase survival.

Understanding your stress is the first step to having more power over it.

When you are faced with a threat whether real or perceived, your autonomic nervous system sets off a series of chemical reactions involving the hypothalamus, pituitary and adrenal glands. Also known as the HPAaxis.  This results in the release of epinephrine (adrenaline) and glucocorticoids (cortisol) from the adrenal glands. This triggers physiological changes that help you survive immediate danger.

Adrenaline increases your heart rate, dilates your pupils, increases alertness and decreases blood flow to the skin, and your digestive system. Blood is redirected to your muscles for increased strength. Cortisol increases glucose, which is the main form of energy used by both your brain and body. Cortisol increases your blood sugar by breaking down muscle (protein) and increasing fatty acids to supply energy to the muscles. This increased energy supply gives the body the necessary power to respond to a physically and emotionally demanding situation. It allows you to fight harder or run faster, thus increasing your odds of surviving.

What is cortisol’s role is causing chronic disease?  When you are in a stressful situation, large amounts of the hormone cortisol are released into the bloodstream.  Over time, prolonged elevations of cortisol can have negative health consequences.

Here is what can happen when stress becomes chronic.  Initially you have the alarm phase – the immediate reaction to a stress.  Heart rate increases, breathing becomes rapid, digestive enzyme production decreases, and blood sugar levels increase.

The alarm phase is usually short, and self limited, hormone levels go back to normal until activated by another threat. No long-term negative health consequences occur.  Unfortunately in today’s world many people have chronically elevated levels of these hormones due to stress. Our lifestyles and the world around us are full of potential stressful situations. You may feel continuing stress related to the economy, fear of terrorists, relationships, natural disasters, traffic, your job, etc.

We have become a nation of chronically stressed individuals

Whether perceived or real, stressful situations arise multiple times throughout the day.  The stress response was helpful to our ancestors that had to fight or run from a wild bear. Unfortunately in our daily lives, we all have perceived threats through out the day. This stress has contributed to many chronic health problems.

If stress continues the adaptation phase kicks in, allowing the body to continue the fight or flight response. This is where cortisol comes in, converting protein stores to blood sugar to continue to supply energy to muscles.  Sodium is retained to keep body fluid levels up and blood pressure elevated.  This is why continued stress can lead to diabetes, heart disease, and hypertension.

We can all relate to catching a cold or coming down with a virus when we are under stress. That’s because cortisol redirects immune cells, which lowers your immunity, causing increased risk of infections. Cortisol can also lead to depressed cartilage and bone formations, increasing risks of osteoporosis. In addition it can also cause damage to the part of the brain the hippocampus responsible for short-term memory, and it alters nerve cell functions in the brain leading to anxiety and depression.

If the stress response continues, the body starts slowing down, as it is unable to continue producing high levels of stress hormones.  Eventually, many body functions can become exhausted.  Exhaustion due to prolonged stress weakens the heart, blood vessels, adrenal glands, and immune system – partially due to the chronic elevations of cortisol.

Recent research also shows that chronically high levels of cortisol can result in weight gain and changes in body composition too.  Cortisol promotes increases in blood sugar, which is converted from protein stores (muscle).  This results in the loss of muscle (lean body mass) and in increase in body fat, especially around the mid-section.

One study showed an increased tendency in snacking during times of high cortisol levels in the blood. People who have trouble coping with stress often turn to food for comfort.  In addition cortisol causes physiologic changes that increase food intake. Cortisol affects our hunger hormones leptin and ghrelin. Cortisol decreases leptin the hormone responsible for telling us we are full. It also increases ghrelin the hormone that tells us we are hungry. Both these hormonal changes cause one to increase their food intake.

In addition cortisol also increases insulin and neuropeptide Y, again both cause you to consume more food, particularly high fat or sugar comfort food.  Therefore, chronic stress can lead to weight gain.  Weight gain around the middle, known as “central adiposity,” is associated with the metabolic imbalances of “metabolic syndrome”, insulin resistance, and increased risk of heart disease.

So clearly chronic stress has a negative impact on our health causing or exacerbating heart disease, diabetes, hypertension, anxiety depression, osteoporosis, impaired immunity, dementia, and possibly cancer.

The good news is, your can decide to take care of yourself. You can decide to better manage your stress. A highly effective, but often overlooked therapy is acupuncture. Very briefly, acupuncture enables the body to boost the immune response, and lessen the bad effects of stress on many fronts.  More about how acupuncture reduces stress and helps restore healthier conditions in the body is the topic of the next article.

How Cosmetic Acupuncture Restores Youthful Beauty Without Pain, Side Effects or Surgery

What is cosmetic acupuncture?

Also known as acupuncture facial rejuvenation, it’s a treatment that enhances your youthful appearance and your overall sense of well-being. Not only is it effective in reducing wrinkles, lines and firming loose skin. Clients often feel increased energy, better skin tone and a healthy glow that comes from deep within.

Facial acupuncture helps lift and firm up skin that sags around the chin and eyes, softens deep lines and erases fine lines.  It improves the complexion and gives the entire face a younger appearance.

 How does cosmetic acupuncture help you look younger?

This treatment uses acupuncture needles – which are sterile, stainless steel needles that are as thin as a human hair.   Insertion into the skin is painless, and works by creating areas of micro trauma, improving circulation, and producing collagen and elastin in the tissues where applied.  This brings on a natural glowing complexion, firmer skin, and reduces the appearance of wrinkles.

Because it does not involve incisions, acid peels or injections, it does not provide results like Botox, surgical facelifts or structural fillers under the skin.  You get a more youthful look naturally, without the side effects or recovery time needed from these other treatments.

 How many treatments are needed for best results?

To get the desired results, it’s recommended to plan a series of 10 treatments.  Schedule two treatments per week for 5 weeks with your practitioner.  Then, plan just one treatment per month as recommended to maintain your results.

 Advantages of cosmetic acupuncture

There are many advantages to facial acupuncture over other treatments.  It is completely natural, and does not introduce drugs, fillers or chemicals into the body.  It has no side effects, and doesn’t require downtime to heal from more traumatic procedures.  It’s also a lot more cost-effective, and can last from 3 to 5 years depending on your age and your schedule of treatments.

If you want a more youthful appearance without artificial chemicals, or surgery, and you’d rather use your body’s own natural healing response, facial acupuncture is a good option for you.  Another benefit is the increased energy and vitality that many people experience with acupuncture.  Not only do you look better, you feel better too.

Dr. Keller is trained in Mei Zen cosmetic acupuncture and practices at the Optimal Wellness Center in New Jersey.

Acupuncture Relieves Pain from Osteoarthritis of the Knee

Acupuncture is effective for reducing pain and improving joint function in osteoarthritis of the knees

According to results published in the Annals of Internal Medicine December 21st, 2004. Acupuncture provides pain relief and improves function in individuals who have osteoarthritis of the knees. The results were significant “for the first time a clinical trial with sufficient, rigors, size and duration has shown that acupuncture reduces the pain and functional impairment of osteoarthritis of the knee” said Stephen E Shrauss, M.D. NCCAM Director. He further noted that the results of this study showed that acupuncture can be an effective addition to the treatment of patients with osteoarthritis of the knee.

Osteoarthritis affects more than 20 million Americans causing a significant amount of physical disability among those suffering from osteoarthritis of the knee.

This study was extremely important by providing another treatment option to help millions of patients by decreasing their pain and increasing their function. Research suggests one of the ways acupuncture may decrease pain is by altering pain signals. When acupuncture needles are inserted into a specific site, it is felt that they may alter the pain signal by directly stimulating nerves, altering the signaling along nerve cells. In addition, acupuncture increases the release of endorphins, which are the body’s natural painkiller. The release of endorphins and neurotransmitters like serotonin reduce the perception of pain by the brain.

Although we do not know precisely how acupuncture reduces pain, scientific research confirms that it is safe and effective treatment option for many conditions including osteoarthritis of the knee.

Acupuncture is an effective way to reduce pain and increase function in patients suffering from osteoarthritis of the knee.

Acupuncture is Effective in Treating TMJ Disorders

What are TMJ Disorders?

The temporalmandibular joint is the term used for the joint connecting the upper and lower jaw.  Disorders affecting this area — commonly referred to as TMJ —  refer to pain or dysfunction in this joint.

TMJ is usually associated with pain and stiffness. There may also be clicking or popping noted when chewing or opening the mouth fully, like when one yawns. TMJ is linked to stress, teeth grinding, dental problems and excessive gum chewing.

Treating TMJ

There are many effective treatments for TMJ including acupuncture. Scientific research supports acupuncture as a safe and effective treatment for TMJ.

Recent studies have reported that following acupuncture, patients had measurably less problem muscle activity. Muscle activity measured by EMG was reduced at rest, protrusion, and clenching. S. Rancan D.D.S. M.D.S. et al., authors of Acupuncture and TMJ Disorders: A 3 month follow up EMG study, published their findings in The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine. (Vol 15, number12, 2009). In addition an increased bite force was measured. Patients were able to bite down harder without pain) They further concluded that acupuncture led to a remission in their patients symptoms.

Another recent article published in The Clinical Journal of Pain, (July/Aug 2010 vol26 Issue6) also concluded that acupuncture is effective in reducing pain in patients with TMJ. In this article, Acupuncture in the Treatment of Pain in Temporomandibular Disorders: A Systematic Review and Meta -Analysis of Randomized Controlled Studies, the authors analyzed 4 studies. The studies showed that acupuncture reduces pain, improves chewing function, and increases the maximal opening of the mouth. They concluded that acupuncture works and that:

“Acupuncture is more effective than placebo in reducing pain intensity.”

How does acupuncture reduce pain in patients with TMJ?

Ancient Chinese theories suggest that acupuncture works by opening blocked channels in the body and restoring a balanced flow of energy.

Western research suggests one of the ways acupuncture may decrease pain is by altering the pain signals. When acupuncture needles are inserted into specific sights it is felt that they may alter the pain signal by directly stimulating nerves altering the signaling along nerve cells. In addition acupuncture increases the release of endorphins, which are the body’s natural painkillers. The release of endorphins and neurotransmitters like serotonin reduce the perception of pain by the brain.

Although we do not know precisely how acupuncture reduces pain, scientific research confirms that it is a safe, and effective treatment option. Furthermore research also shows that the benefits derived from acupuncture are not a placebo effect.

The bottom line is that works!

Acupuncture is a safe and effective in treating many painful conditions including TMJ.

About the Author:  Dr. Betty Keller specializes in treatment of chronic pain including TMJ.  She provides acupuncture therapy, integrated with conventional medical therapy at the Optimal Wellness Center in Franklin Lakes, New Jersey.

Fibromyalgia Treatment: Acupuncture is Effective in Reducing Symptoms

Fibromyalgia is a syndrome that causes chronic widespread musculoskeletal pain.  It is often associated with one or more other symptoms such as fatigue, stiffness, and insomnia.  The pain of Fibromyalgia syndrome (also known as FMS) typically includes particular areas of increased sensitivity called tender points.

Fibromyalgia affects up to 2% of the population.  The best treatment approach is integrative combining Western medicine, therapeutic lifestyle changes and complementary therapies.  Complementary therapy, like acupuncture is effective in reducing symptoms of fibromyalgia.  An important study published in the Mayo Clinic Proceedings showed that acupuncture reduced symptoms in patients with fibromyalgia including reduction in pain, fatigue, and anxiety.  In addition, it was found to be as effective as some medications.  Using the FIO score (a standard measure of fibromyalgia activity), acupuncture reduced the score by 7 points.  This clinical benefit is comparable to pharmacological interventions such as tricyclic antidepressants (a decrease of 7 points) and the pain medication Tramadol (a decrease of 6 points)

According to the lead author, Dr. David P. Martin, M.D., PhD, “We found that acupuncture significantly improved symptoms of fibromyalgia.  Symptomatic improvement was not restricted to pain relief and was most significant for fatigue and anxiety.”

It is believed that acupuncture may actually block pain impulses from reaching the brain.  Acupuncture increases production of endorphins, the body’s natural painkillers.  The gentle insertion of acupuncture needles at specific sites causes a measurable release of endorphins into the blood stream.  These natural pain killers help decrease pain. Repeated treatments are felt to up-regulate endorphins causing increased production of endorphins and thus a sustained reduction in pain.

Acupuncture is felt to increase a patient’s pain threshold, which is normally low in patients with fibromyalgia.  It also increases the production of neurotransmitters, which carry impulses between nerve cells.  Acupuncture increases serotonin, which is also typically low in fibromyalgia patients.  Seratonin is the neurotransmitter responsible for “feeling happy”.  It controls mood by helping with sleep, calming anxiety and reducing depression.

Neurotransmitters stimulate or inhibit nerve impulses in the brain that relay sensations such as pain.  Elevated levels of neurotransmitters can increase a patient’s tolerance to pain.

Benefits of Acupuncture For Fibromyalgia Patients

  • Less pain
  • Better sleep
  • More energy
  • Relaxation / Stress Reduction
  • Anxiety reduction
  • Reduction of depression
  • Possible boost to the immune system
  • Better overall health

Acupuncture is a safe and effective way of reducing symptoms in patients with fibromyalgia.

Fibromyalgia Treatment with Acupuncture in Bergen County, NJ

Dr. Betty Keller specializes in acupuncture, combined with Western medicine in treating fibromyalgia.  Her medical practice is in Franklin Lakes, New Jersey, serving surrounding areas and Bergen County.

To request an appointment to visit her office at 777 Franklin Ave | Franklin Lakes, NJ 07417, please contact us:  201-485-7930.