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Electro-acupuncture (EA) enhances the muscle-building effects of oral essential amino acids in older males, Chinese clinicians have found. A total of 48 male participants over 60 years old were randomised to either EA with oral essential amino acids (EA + AA), or oral essential amino acids alone (AA). Acupuncture points on the limbs (bilateral Hegu L.I.-14 and Quchi L.I.-11, plus Biguan ST-31 and Huaroumen ST-34) were stimulated electrically once every three days for 12 weeks. All participants received essential amino acids orally, twice per day for 28 weeks. Combined EA + AA therapy increased muscle mass in a shorter time than oral AA only. Skeletal muscle mass improved significantly in the EA + AA group after 12 weeks, but not until after 28 weeks in the AA group. Both groups exhibited significant changes in body fat percentage (BFP), compared with baseline values. Between group differences were significant for BFP after 12 weeks of treatment, and after 20 weeks for muscle mass, both in favour of acupuncture.

The Effects of Electrical Acupuncture and Essential Amino Acid Supplementation on Sarcopenic Obesity in Male Older Adults: A Randomized Control Study. Obes Facts. 2018;11(4):327-334.

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