Acupuncture For Gastroparesis: Easing Symptoms Naturally

by | Mar 19, 2024 | Acupuncture

Acupuncture for gastroparesis brings together the time-tested wisdom of traditional Chinese medicine with today’s health needs in a natural, soothing way. At Family Wellness Acupuncture in Irvine, CA, Ryoko Takayama and her team offer this gentle yet potent form of relief to those grappling with delayed gastric emptying—a condition that slows down how quickly your stomach can clear its contents.

This often leads to discomforts like feeling unusually full early during a meal or battling nausea. It’s intriguing to note that, although research on acupuncture’s effectiveness for gastroparesis presents mixed results because studies aren’t always conclusive, countless individuals still experience significant relief through this ancient practice.

Intrigued? Let’s dive deeper into how it might help you find some much-needed comfort.

Key Takeaways

  • Acupuncture helps ease gastroparesis symptoms like nausea and bloating by stimulating specific body points.
  • Family Wellness Acupuncture in Irvine, CA, led by Ryoko Takayama, specializes in using acupuncture for natural relief from gastroparesis.
  • Besides acupuncture, other natural treatments include nutritional adjustments and the use of supplements to improve digestive health.
  • Research on acupuncture’s effectiveness shows mixed results but some patients find significant symptom relief.
  • Lifestyle changes such as eating smaller meals and avoiding hard-to-digest foods can also help manage gastroparesis symptoms.

Understanding Gastroparesis

Woman with upset stomach

Gastroparesis is a condition involving delayed stomach emptying, leading to symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, and bloating. It can be caused by nerve damage, diabetes mellitus, or unknown reasons.

Gastroparesis Signs and Symptoms

Feeling full soon after starting a meal is a common sign of gastroparesis. This condition slows down the stomach’s emptying process, leading to discomfort even with small amounts of food.

Many also experience nausea, bloating, and regurgitation – where partially digested food moves back up the digestive tract. Such symptoms make eating a challenging task for those affected.

With this slowed digestion comes risks like malnutrition and dehydration since the body can’t absorb nutrients or fluids properly. Sickness often follows meals, complicating daily life and overall wellbeing.

Understanding these signs helps us identify potential cases of gastroparesis early on. Now, let’s explore how acupuncture plays a role in treating these uncomfortable symptoms naturally.

Causes of Gastroparesis

Moving from the signs and symptoms, let’s dive into what triggers gastroparesis. A variety of factors can bring this condition to life. For starters, diabetes stands out as a primary cause—high blood sugar over time damages the vagus nerve, affecting stomach movement.

Surgeries involving the abdomen or esophagus also play a significant role by potentially harming nearby nerves or tissues.

Other contributors include nervous system diseases like Parkinson’s or multiple sclerosis which interfere with digestive system signals. Hypothyroidism and viral infections add to this list by slowing down bodily functions or directly impacting the stomach’s muscles.

Understanding these causes helps us target treatment more effectively, especially when considering acupuncture and other natural remedies.

The Role of Acupuncture in Treating Gastroparesis

Acupuncture Treatment for Gastroparesis

Acupuncture stimulates specific points on the body to improve gastric motility and reduce symptoms of gastroparesis. Studies show that acupuncture can help manage nausea, vomiting, and abdominal pain in gastroparesis patients.

If you’re considering natural treatments for gastroparesis, Family Wellness Acupuncture in Irvine CA offers acupuncture services by Ryoko Takayama. Find out more at

How Acupuncture Works

Acupuncture stimulates specific points on the body, known as acupoints, using fine needles. This process signals the nervous system to release chemicals in the muscles, spinal cord, and brain.

These chemicals can change our experience of pain or trigger the release of other substances and hormones that influence our body’s self-regulating systems. Improving circulation, reducing inflammation, and enhancing muscle relaxation are just some ways acupuncture helps us heal naturally.

Our approach targets complex medical conditions holistically. For gastroparesis, treatment focuses on improving stomach muscle contraction and food movement through gentle needling techniques along with moxibustion.

These methods encourage better digestive health without relying solely on medication or invasive procedures. With skilled practitioners applying their knowledge in Japanese style acupuncture—incorporating therme and cupping—we aim for a comprehensive treatment strategy that addresses symptoms at their root cause.

Efficacy and Safety of Acupuncture

Research shows uncertainty in short-term benefits of acupuncture for gastroparesis symptoms. Studies suggest effects may closely match those of sham acupuncture, highlighting minimal differences.

Most investigations into this approach carry very low-certainty evidence and struggle with study design flaws.

Regarding safety, reports on acupuncture complications are incomplete. This gap hinders a clear assessment of its risks for gastroparesis patients. Despite these concerns, some studies note a potential marginal benefit when combining acupuncture with gastrokinetic drugs versus using the drug alone.

Moving forward, let’s explore available acupuncture services for gastroparesis management.

Acupuncture Services for Gastroparesis

An acupuncture treatment room with traditional Chinese medicine decor.

With a focus on natural healing, the services provided at Family Wellness Acupuncture in Irvine, CA by Ryoko Takayama offer effective relief from gastroparesis symptoms.

By stimulating the vagus nerve through electroacupuncture, these treatments can enhance stomach emptying and alleviate nausea.

The expertise of Dr. Lalonde ensures safe and evidence-based acupuncture services specifically tailored for gastroparesis patients seeking more than just traditional medical interventions.

Through meticulous attention to individual needs and incorporating Chinese herbal remedies where needed, Family Wellness Acupuncture offers an effective holistic approach to managing gastroparesis symptoms naturally.

For more information about their services, visit

Other Natural Treatments for Gastroparesis

Woman smelling flower after acupuncture for Gastroparesis

Strengthening the Vagus Nerve can help alleviate gastroparesis symptoms. Nutritional adjustments and the use of supplements are also beneficial in managing this condition. If you’re seeking more than just conventional treatment, Family Wellness Acupuncture in Irvine CA offers holistic therapies including acupuncture from Ryoko Takayama.

Visit for more information on natural approaches to managing gastroparesis.

Strengthening the Vagus Nerve

Acupuncture and herbal medicine can help support vagus nerve function and digestion. These natural remedies aim to improve symptoms by assisting in enhancing the functionality of the vagus nerve.

This, in turn, aids in managing gastroparesis effectively through a holistic approach that focuses on supporting digestive health.

Nutritional Adjustments

  1. Consume low – fiber foods to ease digestion.
  2. Stay hydrated to aid in the movement of food through the digestive system.
  3. Incorporate smaller, more frequent meals for better digestion.
  4. Avoid foods that are hard to digest, such as fatty or highly seasoned items.
  5. Consider working with a registered dietitian for personalized dietary guidance.

Use of Supplements

Supplements can play a crucial role in managing gastroparesis symptoms and supporting overall health. Here are some beneficial supplements for gastroparesis:

  1. Probiotics: These can help balance the gut bacteria, aiding digestion and reducing symptoms such as bloating and abdominal pain.
  2. Digestive Enzymes: Supplementing with enzymes like amylase, lipase, and protease can assist in breaking down food, improving nutrient absorption, and easing digestive discomfort.
  3. Vitamins and Minerals: Vitamin B-12, iron, and magnesium supplements may be recommended to address deficiencies often associated with gastroparesis.
  4. Herbal Supplements: Ginger, peppermint, and artichoke extract are known for their potential to alleviate nausea, indigestion, and stomach discomfort.
  5. Omega-3 Fatty Acids: These can help reduce inflammation in the digestive tract, potentially easing gastrointestinal symptoms related to gastroparesis.
  6. Meal Replacement Shakes: Nutrient-dense shakes can provide essential vitamins, minerals, and protein when solid food is difficult to tolerate.
  7. Fiber Supplements: Soluble fiber supplements may aid in regulating bowel movements while minimizing constipation or diarrhea commonly experienced with gastroparesis.

The Impact of Lifestyle Modifications on Gastroparesis

Lifestyle modifications for gastroparesis include chewing thoroughly, having frequent, smaller meals, opting for low-fat and low-fiber foods, staying hydrated, and incorporating gentle exercise.

These adjustments can significantly manage symptoms and improve the overall quality of life for patients.

The modifications are essential. They aid in managing symptoms effectively while improving the patient’s overall well-being. By adopting these changes such as chewing properly, consuming smaller meals more frequently, sticking to low-fat and low-fiber foods, maintaining proper hydration levels and integrating gentle physical activity into their routine – patients with gastroparesis can experience considerable relief from their condition.


Ready to find natural relief for your gastroparesis symptoms? Acupuncture may be the holistic solution you’ve been seeking. Don’t wait to begin your journey toward better health today! Choosing us means we will help you find the healthy results you want.

Book your first appointment with us right now by phone at (949) 836-2857 or online at

Have a question? Connect with us here:


1. What is acupuncture for gastroparesis?

Acupuncture for gastroparesis involves traditional Chinese medicine techniques to ease digestive disorders naturally, focusing on stimulating specific body points to improve symptoms.

2. Can acupuncture really help with diabetic gastroparesis?

Yes, clinical trials have shown that acupuncture can provide relief from diabetic gastroparesis symptoms by enhancing gastric motility and reducing discomfort.

3. How does acupuncture compare to standard treatments?

Research, including systematic reviews and meta-analyses, suggests that when combined with standard care like dietary adjustments and medications, acupuncture may offer additional benefits in managing symptoms.

4. Are there any risks associated with using acupuncture for digestive issues?

Acupuncture is generally safe when performed by certified practitioners; however, it’s essential to consult a healthcare professional before starting any new treatment plan.

5. What should I expect during an acupuncture session for gastroparesis?

During the session, a trained acupuncturist will insert thin needles into specific points on your body related to digestive health—aiming to restore balance and stimulate the parasympathetic “rest and digest” system.

6. How often should I get acupuncture treatments for my condition?

The frequency of sessions varies based on individual needs and severity of symptoms—a gastroenterologist or qualified naturopathic practitioner can recommend a personalized treatment plan after evaluating your condition.



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