Acupuncture and moxibustion is effective for obesity

Background: To evaluate the clinical efficacy of acupuncture and moxibustion therapy compared to non-acupuncture therapy in the treatment of simple obesity in adult.

Methods: Randomized clinical trials concerning acupuncture and moxibustion therapy as a treatment of simple adult obesity were searched in the following Chinese and English databases: Chinese National Knowledge Infrastructure, China Science and Technology Journal Database, WanFang Database, Chinese Biomedical Literature Database, PubMed, Web of Science, Embase, Medline and Cochrane Library. Two researchers independently screened suitable literature according to inclusion and exclusion criteria, extracted data, and evaluated the quality of included studies using the Jadad score scale. After that, data analysis was performed using RevMan 5.4.1 software, Stata 17.0 software and SPSS 25.0 software.

Results: A total of 14 studies involving 1116 adults with simple obesity were included in the meta-analysis. Results revealed that BMI, body weight, waist circumference, total effective rate, triglyceride in the acupuncture group were superior to those in the non-acupuncture group, while there was no statistical difference in improving low density lipoprotein, high density lipoprotein and total cholesterol. As to the selection of acupoints, the acupoints of the stomach meridian of Foot Yangming have the highest frequency of use, with a frequency of 30 times, accounting for 35%. The acupoints can be divided into three clusters: the first category: RN9-SP9-SP6-RN4; the second category: ST40-RN6-SP15-ST36; the third category: ST25-RN12.

Conclusion: Acupuncture and moxibustion is effective in treating adult simple obesity; however, due to the low score of the included studies, we still expect the results of higher-quality literature to provide a higher-level evidence-based basis for clinical decision-making. Furthermore, for the treatment of adult simple obesity, acupoints analysis revealed that Tianshu (ST25), Zhongwan (RN12), Zusanli (ST36), Fenglong (ST40) and Qihai (RN6) can form the basis for the treatment of simple obesity in adult.


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About Attilio

Doctor of Chinese medicine, acupuncture expert and author of My Fertility Guide and My Pregnancy Guide.

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