The combination of acupressure, hypnotherapy and transcendental meditation resulted in a significant decrease of blood-sugar levels among people with type 2 diabetes, according to recent research.

The study, “Combined Therapy Using Acupressure Therapy, Hypnotherapy and Transcendental Meditation versus Placebo in Type 2 Diabetes,” involved 40 patients diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. The patients ranged in age from 25 to 60 years.

Researchers assigned 20 of these patients to the combined therapy group, where they were to receive and participate in a combination of acupressure, hypnotherapy and transcendental meditation. These sessions lasted 60 to 90 minutes each, and they were conducted once a day for 10 consecutive days.

For the acupressure portion of these sessions, the practitioner focused on “how to bring the digestive system to its optimum level,” stimulating spleen point Sp-3 or Sp-6, as well as the liver point Liv-1 and the lung point Lu-7. The practitioner then activated the brain meridian and spleen control point P-7.

“According to acupuncture, diabetic retinopathy is mainly due to liver weakness,” state the study’s authors. “If the liver is activated with acupuncture points, not only does overall digestion improve, but also we can avoid diabetic retinopathy.”

The other 20 subjects in this study were assigned to a placebo control group. The participants in the control group were given two placebo capsules, each of which contained 3 grams of wheat flour, and were instructed to take one of the capsules in the morning and one at night for 10 consecutive days.

The blood-sugar levels of these diabetic subjects were the main outcome measure for the study. The blood-sugar level of each participant was measured before the 10-day study period, after the 10-day study period and again two weeks after the study period ended.

Results of the research revealed that the mean blood-sugar level among participants in the combined therapy group was significantly lower when measured after the 10-day study period and again two weeks later. In the placebo group, no significant changes were observed.

“Our study supports a link between alternative healing therapies and improvement of type 2 diabetes,” state the study’s authors. “This creates an argument for structured programs teaching lifestyle change, non-pharmacologic interventions and alternative therapies, in conjunction with conventional treatment.”

Authors: Roohallah Bay and Fatemah Bay.

Sources: International University for Complementary Medicine, Zoroastrian College, India; Medical Sciences University of Golestan, Iran. Originally published in 2011 in the Journal of Acupuncture and Meridian Studies, 4(3), 183-186.