Acupuncture Continuing Education

Acupuncture & Chinese Medicine Agree On Sleep Research

Acupuncture and Chinese medicine theory predicted the effects of sleep deprivation as discovered in a new clinical study. New research concludes that sleep deprivation and odd hours of sleep lowers levels of insulin (a hormone that controls blood sugar) and lowers the metabolic rate thereby leading to weight gain. Participants in the study averaged a drop of approximately 8 percent in the resting metabolic rate, which could lead to a gain of over 12 pounds of fat per year.

This does not come as a surprise to acupuncturists. Chinese medicine theory asserts that sleep hygiene is essential to good health. It is accepted within Chinese medicine that sleep habits affect serum lipid levels and the BMI (Body Mass Index) in light of recent medical studies. According to Chinese medicine, 8 hours is enough sleep for most individuals, however, more sleep is necessary for ill or weak patients. Children require approximately 11 hours of sleep per day (including naps). Adults should go to sleep between 9 and 10pm and children should retire earlier.

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References:
1. Sci Transl Med 11 April 2012. Vol. 4, Issue 129, p. 129ra43. Sci. Transl. Med. DOI: 10.1126/scitranslmed.3003200
2. Yoshitaka et al. Association of Usual Sleep Duration with Serum Lipid and Lipoprotein Levels. 2003.
3. Robert D. Vorona, et al. Overweight and Obese Patients in a Primary Care Population Report Less Sleep Than Patients With a Normal Body Mass Index. Arch Intern Med. 2005;165:25-30.

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