(Reprinted with permission from The Locals Guide, March 2012)
Locals try a shot of B-12 to lose weight
By Sara Matthis
Special Sections Editor
What if you combined the power of a vitamin B-12 shot with the leverage of acupuncture?
Well, you might just shed that extra weight.
“I started in January and I’ve lost 17 pounds in six weeks,” said Sue Hodgson. “I’m looking forward to reaching my goal of 25 pounds.”
The B12 shots she’s talking about are administered by local acupuncturist Ashley Hoyt with a very fine-gauge needle into traditional weight loss points targeted by acupuncture practice. Acupuncture is based on traditional Chinese medicine that seeks to regulate the body’s function by regulating its energy, or qi. Thin needles are inserted into specific locations connected by channels known as meridians.
The acupuncture points for weight loss are in the lower legs — the fleshy part of the inside of the shin, near the ankle and in the flesh of the outside knee. Hoyt said the B-12 she administers is freshly compounded (mixed), and contain no preservatives.
“My clients get all the benefits of B-12 and further target their health goals by using the different acupuncture points,” Hoyt said.
While Hodgson’s main focus is weight loss, it is not a whimsical goal. The retired teacher and part-time local also has to contend with rheumatoid arthritis and a genetic risk for stroke. Weight loss will minimize her risk and slow disease progression in both cases.
“With the B-12 shots, I have lots of energy, I was always kind of a hyper person, but now I have tons of energy. I walk everyday and I follow a sensible diet,” she said. “In reading up on B-12, I’ve also learned that it’s good for preventing a stroke. My mom had a stroke and so I’m interested in that part, too.”
Vitamin B-12 has been proven to help many disparate areas of human health. It increases energy and speeds metabolism for weight loss; regulates the nervous system for positive mental health including slowing Alzheimer’s disease; promotes a healthy digestive system; protects against heart disease including stroke; boosts the immune system; is good for healthy skin, hair and nails; and helps protect against breast, colon, lung and prostate cancer.
“Recent studies have linked many of those diseases — such as cancer and cardiac disease — to a patient’s weight,” said Hoyt.
Hoyt said she completed a 60-hour certification course focusing on injectable acupuncture treatments that lead her practice to this juncture.
“The class focused on combing injectable homeopathic remedies and vitamin boosters with acupuncture medicine,” she said.
Since her certification, Hoyt has treated clients with B-12 injections seeking weight loss, pain relief, stress reduction and digestive disorders.
“One of my clients is a mother with a full-time job. By the time Thursday rolled around, she was struggling to make it through the day. Plus, she was suffering from extended menstrual bleeding,” Hoyt said. “The B-12 injections decreased the level of fatigue and ended the extra menstrual bleeding.”
Hodgson is not only one of Hoyt’s weight loss success stories, she’s also a believer.
“I kind of ‘poo-pooed’ acupuncture. But I haven’t taken a pain pill since I’ve started getting ‘pinned’ by Ashley,” she said. “In other words, I am a believer.”
The Clinic for Alternative Medicine charges about $35 per visit, much less than the average dieter would spend on a weekly allowance of diet shakes.
Ashley Hoyt, doctor of acupuncture, owns and operates the Clinic of Alternative Medicine, at 3420 Duck Avenue, Key West. The phone number is 305-296-5358.