Acupuncture can boost carabao productivity, studies show
After findings from his studies suggested that acupuncture can improve the fertility of female carabaos and raise their milk output, acclaimed veterinarian Dr. Jezie Acorda was prompted to promote the practice among carabao dairy farmers.
Acorda has been pioneering the use of acupuncture among carabaos and other ruminants. He claims he has proven that acupuncture indeed increases the productive and reproductive performance of water buffaloes.
Recently, speaking before an audience comprised mostly of veterinary medicine students and faculty at the University of the Philippines, Los Baños, Acorda asserted his findings could be a big help to small farmers, who have to rely on a low-cost, yet natural and sustainable, system of production and veterinary medicine.
Acorda disclosed his own study of acupuncture on carabaos at the Southeast Asian Regional Center for Graduate Study and Research in Agriculture (Searca) professorial chair lecture titled “Role of Acupuncture in Increasing Productive Efficiency of Water Buffaloes.”
According to Acorda, the potential of water buffaloes for meat and dairy has not been maximized in the Philippines because of low fertility and low milk production. Acorda also pointed out that acupuncture used in the production of analgesia and therapy of various disorders has been extensively studied in other ruminants, particularly in dairy cattle, beef cattle, sheep, and goats. But he also admitted that research on the use of acupuncture in water buffaloes is quite limited which is mostly conducted by himself.
Acorda’s studies showed that hypodermic needle acupuncture and the use of herbal solutions for aquapuncture can help avert respiratory and digestive diseases in water buffaloes. It can also be used to augment medical procedures.
“More research is needed to see how acupuncture can address reproductive and productive efficiencies in water buffaloes. While arguments against the use of alternative medicine remain, to smallholder livestock raisers, what is important is that these methods can bring a cure,” Acorda said.