The way we approach dieting today is seriously flawed. Many of us set ourselves up to lose before we even begin by approaching our diets from a viewpoint that’s centered solely on physical change. Our desire to fit the unrealistic beauty standards pressed upon us by the media makes us gullible to every trend out there from countless calorie-counting, “magic pills”, and workout fads, to more extreme measures attained through expensive surgeries. Most of these options offer false promises and very rarely provide long-term results. Thankfully, Dr. Mark Mincolla, author of THE WHOLE HEALTH DIET seeks to challenge these trends with his holistic problem solving approach to weight loss. His method of attack centers on the root cause of our failed history with dieting—using food to numb our emotional, mental, and spiritual pain. His antidieting plan recognizes the mind, body, spirit connection—and the necessary commitment that must be made to healing these areas in order to achieve optimal health. In the excerpt below, Dr. Mincolla focuses on body and spirit in this modern day bout with obesity by accessing one of the oldest therapies known to man. Here’s a step-by-step guide to using acupressure as a weight loss tool:
THREE-POINT ACUPRESSURE EXERCISE
There are over one thousand acupuncture points on the human body. Each one has its own unique energetic properties, and when any one given point is combined with other specifically designated points, the energy healing applications are infinite. The WHD’s Three-Point Acupressure Exercise to balance metabolism emphasizes three very important acupuncture points. The three points are stomach 36, small intestine 19 (a point referred to as the “hunger point”), and conception vessel 6. This exercise should not be performed in late stages of pregnancy.
Weight gain from imbalanced metabolism is the result of a breakdown in the energy flow between the brain’s regulatory hypothalamus, the metabolic endocrine system, and the liver. Studies have shown that acupuncture, acupressure, and qigong can help balance the leptin and ghrelin levels, thereby regulating appetite, cravings, and calorie-burning potential.
Stomach 36 is located on the front of the lower leg, below the kneecap, one finger-length outward from the edge of the shinbone (the tibia). This point has a great many applications, but has a specific affinity for tonifying poor digestion.
Small intestine 19, the “hunger point,” is located on the front of the tragus (the prominence at the opening of the ear), in the center on the transitional fold. This point has been used for thousands of years to suppress appetite and stimulate metabolism and improve digestion.
Conception vessel 6 is one of the most important acupuncture points in the human body. It is located 1¾ inches below the center of the umbilicus. This point stimulates the dormant energy of the body, thus increasing general metabolic output. It is also known to tonify the stomach energy and improve digestive efficiency.
Performing the Three-Point Acupressure Exercise is quite simple. First, find a quiet place to sit and relax for three to five minutes. Begin by clearing all existing oxygen from your lungs. Immediately follow the cleansing breath by taking a deep inhalation. Hold the breath for a count of four seconds, then release.
Now place your index finger directly on the stomach 36 point, applying moderate pressure. Keep your finger pressed down on the point for approximately thirty seconds. Next, pulse your finger up and down, slowly and repeatedly, alternating between shallow and deep pressure, for an additional thirty seconds. Finally, once again place your index finger directly on the point with moderate pressure for thirty seconds, then release. Next, follow the same directions for small intestine 19 and conception vessel 6, in that order.
The Three-Point Acupressure Exercise should be practiced once a day, preferably in the morning. Remember, do not perform this exercise in late stages of pregnancy.
Excerpted from The Whole Health Diet by Dr. Mark Mincolla with the permission of Tarcher Perigee, an imprint of Penguin Random House. Copyright © 2015 by Mark Mincolla.
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