Laser therapy may help weight loss, quitting smoking
Kristen Thompson/metro Vancouver
Rachel Shoniker helps people keep their new year’s resolutions.
The 32-year-old Nelson native runs the downtown Vancouver franchise of Imagine Laserworks, a clinic that uses laser therapy to help people quit smoking, lose weight, and overcome stress, depression and substance abuse.
She visited the White Rock branch after friends, all chain smokers, claimed to be cured of their habit after one smoking cessation treatment, without cravings or withdrawal symptoms.
Shoniker went in for several stress-relief treatments, and before long was opening her own franchise, where she focuses on smoking cessation and weight loss therapy.
"I was in a transition period, and this opportunity presented itself to me, and I decided to be open-minded," said Shoniker, who has a bachelors degree in Russian and German studies from the University of Victoria, and was in public relations before her career change.
"This is challenging, but it’s also super rewarding because you’re giving people control over their lives. The way I see it is people pay me to help them reach their goal, not for my services."
The laser treatment works like acupuncture, only without the needles. A small, low-powered laser stimulates points on the hands, ears and legs, releasing endorphines in the body and leaving clients feeling calm and relaxed.
She balances the laser treatment with a nutritional supplement component, which works towards improving physical and psychological health.
"I try very much to focus on it being a lifestyle change. Ninety-five per cent of people have changed their eating habits and increased their activity level because they have that confidence and motivation, and because they see the results and feel good."
She said January and February are typically the busiest months because of new year’s resolutions.
People will often have tried different smoking-cessation or weight loss methods, all to no avail, and are now willing to try non-conventional methods to kick their habit.
"It’s important to be open-minded. At most, people are skeptical because it’s a concept they’ve not heard of," she says, adding that people are far less wary once they realize it actually works.
Her clients, Shoniker says, are ecstatic with the results.
Her job is rewarding because she says she’s found a balance between being in the business sector and engaging herself in something that improves peoples’ lives.
"I really feel like I’m contributing," she says.