Weight-Loss by Ear Stapling?

Staple

Everyone from chiropractors to registered nurses is touting ear stapling as the be-all, end-all New Age weight-loss strategy. Plug your ear with one staple, the story goes, and the fat slides off you like butter on top of a hot yeast roll.

Practitioners claim piercing stomach-related pressure-points on the ear will:

a) release endorphins

b) stimulate the circulatory system, and

c) alter the body’s bio-electric field.

(Take your pick.)

Despite the dangers of infection from “back alley staplings,” customers claim the staples help them lose weight, stop smoking, sleep better, and get over chronic constipation. (Take your pick.)

Me? I’m more than a little skeptical about this one, for at least three reasons. One: not even the people offering the service agree on why it works. Two: treatments that claim to cure everything from obesity to insomnia are generally money-making schemes for quacks.

Three: just last night, on the flight from Atlanta to Jackson, I sat behind four ladies — three nurses and a beautician, I think — who had just become “certified” to deliver stapling services during a two-day workshop. Here’s their discussion, almost ver batim:

Lady 1: So, how are we going to sell this?

Lady 2: Oh, you know how people combine their years of experience and say “We’ve got more than thirty years experience with so-and-so?” We can do that, so we won’t sound like we’re new at this!

Lady 1: So, how much experience do we have?

Lady 3: We’ve all got two days. Put us together, that’s a week. “A week of combined experience!” That doesn’t sound very good.

Lady 4: Wait! I did a paper in high school on accupuncture! What was I … eighteen? So I can say I’ve been studying this for almost ten years. If y’all’ve ever done anything on accupuncture or even ear piercing, you could do the very same thing. You could even count how long you’ve been a nurse, really.

By the end of the conversation, these ladies had managed to stretch their attendance at a two-day ear stapling workshop in Atlanta into more than three decades of ear stapling goodness.

Staple

Everyone from chiropractors to registered nurses is touting ear stapling as the be-all, end-all New Age weight-loss strategy. Plug your ear with one staple, the story goes, and the fat slides off you like butter on top of a hot yeast roll.

Practitioners claim piercing stomach-related pressure-points on the ear will:

a) release endorphins

b) stimulate the circulatory system, and

c) alter the body’s bio-electric field.

(Take your pick.)

Despite the dangers of infection from “back alley staplings,” customers claim the staples help them lose weight, stop smoking, sleep better, and get over chronic constipation. (Take your pick.)

Me? I’m more than a little skeptical about this one, for at least three reasons. One: not even the people offering the service agree on why it works. Two: treatments that claim to cure everything from obesity to insomnia are generally money-making schemes for quacks.

Three: just last night, on the flight from Atlanta to Jackson, I sat behind four ladies — three nurses and a beautician, I think — who had just become “certified” to deliver stapling services during a two-day workshop. Here’s their discussion, almost ver batim:

Lady 1: So, how are we going to sell this?

Lady 2: Oh, you know how people combine their years of experience and say “We’ve got more than thirty years experience with so-and-so?” We can do that, so we won’t sound like we’re new at this!

Lady 1: So, how much experience do we have?

Lady 3: We’ve all got two days. Put us together, that’s a week. “A week of combined experience!” That doesn’t sound very good.

Lady 4: Wait! I did a paper in high school on accupuncture! What was I … eighteen? So I can say I’ve been studying this for almost ten years. If y’all’ve ever done anything on accupuncture or even ear piercing, you could do the very same thing. You could even count how long you’ve been a nurse, really.

By the end of the conversation, these ladies had managed to stretch their attendance at a two-day ear stapling workshop in Atlanta into more than three decades of ear stapling goodness.

Mark McElroy

I'm a husband, mystic, writer, media producer, creative director, tinkerer, blogger, reader, gadget lover, and pizza fiend.

16 comments

  • Nice story but not the norm for professional acupuncturists. What you mention (ear stapling) is of great concern as it would not fall within the scope of practice for most healthcare professionals especially RN’s. A professional acupuncturist is currently the only healthcare professional that must graduate from a 3-4 year ACAOM accreditted program in Acupuncture or Oriental Medicine that includes almost 900 hours of supervised clinical training in addition to 2000 hours of western and eastern medical training. In many states, we are the ones who are licensed after taking a licensing exam and regulated as professionals by various licensing boards. This is not even close to what some healthcare practitioners have and these are often the physicians and nurses that many see. In CA, Licensed Acupuncturists are trained as primarycare physicians as they are also in several other states. Sorry to see that you had such a ridiculous experience.

  • In most states a nurse CAN perform ear stapling (except Mississippi) Also most of the people doing them have been trained. and really believe in the theory. My web site in progres. Thin Pin.com

    I use superior cleaning techniques of the skin and have had no infections and great results. I also am an R.N. with 30 years experience, and also hold a cosmetology license.

  • This is great! The story above about the women on a plane is SOOO true. I have seen this pop up all over the country for the last two years now. People getting their so-called certification of ear stapling from anywhere from Ebay to “professionals” in the business a week.

    I DO perform the ear stapling procedure and to the best of my credential can say that I am around the 4th one in the U.S. (Well aside from those who initiated the procedure in the 70’s with titanium staples.)to take practice in this procedure. I have approximately 1 1/2 years of experience with EAR STAPLING….AND THATS IT!! I do use my knowledge and study of auricular therapy, holistic and osteopathic medicine, also the fact that I have been a medical surgical nurse for 9 years as a base for my business, but certainly not as experience. College course study with emphasis on holistic and osteopathic medicine. (finishing Doctorate in Oriental medicine)(NOT high school papers)..

    That is so profound…Well and funny. I am not at all claiming to be the know all, be all, of ear stapling. I do however let my reputation and client care speak for itself. I own and operate one of the countries most informative websites on ear stapling. I went as far as to include a forum section where daily questions are posted from all those who would like to gain knowledge about the staple. (NO THIS IS NOT A TRAINING COURSE!!) LOL!! Ear Stapling has worked wonders for many many people. I treat everything from weight loss, migraines, smoking cessation, and pain management. And not all in the same acupuncture site!! Opra Here I come!! LOL!! Just thought I would through in my two cents.

    Take Care and God Bless!!-Skye

  • I recently had the procedure done and though a bit skeptical about the whole thing, still I did it. The right ear didn’t hurt much more than an ear piercing however the left did hurt quite a bit. The nurse who performed the procedure then massaged my ear/jaw area for about a minute and all the pain was primarily gone. Now to the good news, I am a chronic migrane patient and have suffered with headaches for 30 years. I have headaches to the point of total shutdown and vomiting. The headaches would come on no less than 2 times a week. I have had ZERO headaches since the procedure. ZERO and I don’t know if it will help in my weightloss goals but I am optimistic and only time will tell. I will update you in a month or so. I say this to those who are skeptical or curious.. America is FAT, TIRED and Dying from Smoking so why NOT try this instead of filling our bodies with poison from trendy diet pills that are killing us internally! It hurts but its cheaper and safer than the pills. What do you have to lose? A little pain for something that really might help you.

  • Drew wrote: “America is FAT, TIRED, and Dying from Smoking so why NOT try this instead of filling our bodies with poison from trendy diet pills?”

    I think the better question is: “Why swap one dangerous, trendy, unproven treatment for another?”

    Fat? Tired? We’ve known the cure for years: eat less and move more. But that takes dedication, time, and effort.

    The “trendy diet pills” you revile and the stapled ears are essentially the same thing: useless short cuts taken by people who don’t want to invest in the only well-documented, widely-successful treatments for obesity: diets and exercise.

  • Mark if that diet and exercise thing works so well then why is obesity on the rise, we are so busy trying to make a living who has time for exercise, and you know to eat healthy you have to be wealthy and not all of us have those kind of budgets. There is a lot more to losing weight than diet and exercise. If you are overweight you know this. So if somwthing works regulate it.

  • Diet & exercise? Yeah.. that works for some people but I can truly say that I have tried it. Honest to God — cut my calories down to 1200 a day, exercise an hour a day — all of this without fail FOR MONTHS. I kept a journal of what I ate & the exercise I did. I can show it to you if you’d like. Did I lose weight? Yeah…. I lost 4 pounds in 4 months. If there is something MORE I can do to help myself get healthy, then I am definitely going to look into it… this being one option.

  • If you want to reduce your weight, you need to do a lot of exercise to accelerate your metabolism. It’s better if you do cardiovascular exercise, because this kind of exercise helps you burn fat…

    You should begin with a good eating plan, combining fats and sweets with fruits and vegetables. It will be better if you drink at least eight glasses of water daily to control your calories and your cholesterol.

    If you want you can use some pills to control your weight and to accelerate the process of burning fat.

    I know some pills which you can use to reduce your weight. Those pills are Xenical and Hoodia. Their results are excellent and fast.

    Visit this website to find more information:

    http://www.todoenmedicamentos.info

    This pharmacy is excellent because it has international delivery.

  • ear stapling are you effin serious. that is honestly rediculous. I exercise daily and eat healthy…I stay chunky but that is not what is important. Your health is important and sticking a staple in your ear is not by any means healthy. Even if it did make you skinner(which I highly doubt) you would still be unhealthy. fyi skinny is not heathly …. ethopeans are not healthy and they are skinny. Healthy is being able to run a mile in the required time limit for a specific age without feeling like you are dying. Healthy is being able to play baseball with your child homerun after homerun with out taking a breather. Now I can gurentee that there is not a staple or pill(that is legal) that can allow you to do those things. running(well youll probably still be walking) around with your ears stapled chugging soda and eating donuts..(why dont you just purchase bags of sugar and it that im sure its cheap) irregardless of if your skinny will not make you attractive. LMFAO

  • Heatherpie . . . sometimes uneducated people are wary of the unknown. My advice to you is: Educate yourself about the procedure before you comment.

  • i just had my ears stapled around 3 weeks ago. i am a 37 year old woman with a low thyroid.the first week went well….i gave up soda and am now drinking way more water than i ever have in my life!my certified acu doc also gave me a vitamin called protefood to take 2 times a day. have you heard of this vitamin? it really upsets my stumach! but my girlfriend loves it. also i need to go back because my right staple is loose. i have maybe lost 5-6 pounds. do you have any recomendations for me?

  • Sheri–

    I don’t know that Skye is coming back here soon–so, please permit me to put in my two cents.

    It sounds like you may be receiving a “quick fix” type of treatment–ear stapling and a supplement. Not exactly the way we were trained to practice oriental medicine!

    I’d recommend you go to http://www.nccaom.org and search for either a board-certified:practitioner of oriental medicine oran acupuncturist who also is certified in chinese herbology.

    Go to someone who will completely review your medical history and take your low thyroid into account. Although the practitioner will diagnose according to oriental medicine principles, your entire history and family history must be taken into account.

    I always recommend that my patients eat a nutritious diet rather than relying upon any supplement for proper nutrition.

    Each person is different and requires treatment designed for his or her needs. So, what is good for your girlfriend is not necessarily good for you! And obviously, it’s not because it upsets your stomach.

    You need to go to a practitioner who will go to the root of your condition, treat it and guide you through lifestyle changes.

    Best,Marianne (NCCAOM board-certified practitioner of oriental medicine–which includes acupuncture and herbal medicine)

    BTW, ear stapling was never included in our education–it’s a “quickie” weekend thing!

  • i just got this done today because two of my friends got this done. Both of them lost a little over 30 lbs in 3 months. They eat like slobs and dont diet or exercise. I always have ate healthy and exercise everyday and i stay chunky. So i need to try it i just cant take it antmore.

Who Wrote This?

Mark McElroy

I'm a husband, mystic, writer, media producer, creative director, tinkerer, blogger, reader, gadget lover, and pizza fiend.

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